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Running With Scissors

CastAnnette Bening, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jill Clayburgh, Brian Cox, Joseph Fiennes, Evan Rachel Wood, Alec Baldwin, Vanessa Redgrave, Kristin Chenoweth, Colleen Camp, Patrick Wilson
Year released2006
Spoiler alert
Blog entry

Young Augusten, referring to his poet mother Deirdre: “I was so crazy about her.”
”My mother was crazy about me too.” (0:00)

Deirdre recites her work: “My grief is more than I can easily contain. My grief builds this town anew...” (0:02)

Deirdre: “My grief is more than I can easily contain.” (0:06)

Deirdre: “You didn’t tap into your creative unconscious Fern.”
”She’s use metaphor to explore her dead marriage, her pain... Sexton’s therapist told her to write poetry as a way to exorcise her rage.”
”You funnel that rage into the only escape you have, your art.”
”Get the rage on the page women.” (0:10)

Deirdre tells her husband Norman, “You’d like nothing more than to see me slit my wrists.”
Norman: ”You know, you are hysterical. You’re so goddamn hysterical.”
Deirdre: “I’m hysterical? You think this is hysterical?”
”You’re so repressed that you mistake creative passion for hysteria.”
Augusten: “Will you two stop fighting?”
Deirdre: “He’d rather... wait for me to cut my own throat.”
Augusten: “Why can’t we just be a normal family?” (0:11)

Deirdre tells psychiatrist Dr. Finch, referring to Norman, “Oh, he’s passed out drunk.”
Finch: “So, your anxiety level.”
Deirdre: ”I’m very anxious.”
Finch: “What I’m getting at is constipation, both literal and subconscious.”
Deirdre: “When I write I’m writing from my unconscious...”
Finch: ”Back to your anxiety for a moment. Do you have thoughts of suicide? Deirdre, do you have suicidal thoughts? Do you ever think of killing yourself?”
”And how often would you say you have these thoughts of suicide?”
Valium.” He hands her a pill. (0:15)

Deirdre and Norman in psychotherapy session with Finch. Finch: “You were trapped in your childhood by a castrating mother, and as an adult male you have sought the same female archetype.”
Deirdre: “I’m married to a narcissist.”
Finch tells Norman what he is writing: “Norman Burroughs is... an unapologetic alcoholic.” (0:20)

Augusten and Deirdre in psychotherapy session with Finch. Deirdre, referring to Norman: “He threatened to kill himself if I turned down his proposal.” (0:22)

Dr. Finch’s wife Agnes tells the cat, “Oh, Freud.” (0:27)

Dr. Finch’s daughter Natalie tells Augusten, “John Moses is the kid of one of my dad’s patients.” (0:30)

Natalie tells Augusten, referring to a black device labeled “Reiter Electrostimulator,”
“It’s an electroshock therapy machine. My dad used to use it on patients all the time...”
Augusten: “So why is Dr. Finch seeing patients in his house now?”
Natalie: “... he’s lost a lot of patients.”
”Are you retarded?”
Deirdre: “I’m blocked Dr. Finch.”
Augusten: “I can’t tap into my subconscious.”
Finch: “There’s only one treatment available that could resurrect your creative spirit.”
Natalie: “Electroshock therapy.”
Natalie places electrodes on Augusten’s head and cheeks: “Put in your mouth guard.”
Natalie tells her sister Hope, referring to Augusten, “He’s repressing a memory. We need to go deep into his subconscious mind.” (0:30)

Deirdre, sedated, tells Augusten, referring to Norman’s anger, “He’s projecting it onto me.” (0:35)

Augusten writes in his diary, “This place is worse than any loony bin.” (0:38)

Hope: “You know Natalie, you’re so oral you’ll never get to anal.”
Finch: “Excellent Natalie, your hysteria is spectacular. You’re moving from the anal onto the phallic.”
Augusten, referring to Hope: “She has a cat named Freud.”
Hope: “Freud is dying.”
Natalie: “Hope, Freud wasn’t talking to you...”
Hope: “She contacted me during REM sleep...”
Agnes: “You better not be engaging in pot...”
Hope: “Until Freud dies...” (0:39)

Burial for Freud. Augusten: “According to Hope, Freud died of kitty leukemia. According to me, Freud died of being trapped...” (0:41)

Natalie tells Augusten, “When they find out what goes on in that house, it’d be like Frankenstein when the villagers surround the castle...” (0:43)

Finch’s adopted son Neil asks Augusten, “Where does that leave you, at the crazy house with the even crazier Finch?”
Augusten: “Do you think he’s crazy?”
Neil: ”Like when... I’d have a rage seizure...”
Augusten: “But couldn’t you have just been his patient?”
Neil: ”Crazy.” (0:45)

Augusten, referring to Neil, “... it sure beat another crazy dinner at the Finch house.” (0:48)

Deirdre tells Augusten, “Don’t act out in anger.” (0:52)

Augusten: “Journal, I’m confused.” (0:53)

Augusten asks Deirdre, “You’re giving me away to your shrink?” (0:56)

Finch tells Augusten, “This is mild anti-anxiety medication...”
”Well, the only loophole... would be for you to commit suicide.”
Augusten: “You want me to kill myself?”
Finch: “Well, if you try to kill yourself, I could explain to the school that you are psychologically unfit to attend, and that you needed intensive treatment. It could be a staged suicide attempt.” (0:58)

In a psychotherapy session Finch tells Neil, “Direct all that rage at me if it makes you feel better.”
Neil: “I can’t focus because of the voices!”
Neil rages. (1:10)

Deirdre tells Agnes, “But then I’d miss my therapy.” (1:11)

Deirdre in a session: “That’s why I’m blocked Dr. Finch.”
Finch: “You’re not blocked because of Fern, Deirdre. You’re constipated creatively because of the rage you’re not expressing.”
Referring to patient Dorothy: ”She paints her fingernails to match her mood.” (1:13)

Finch: “Where will I treat the people who need me?” (1:16)

Hope tells Natalie the secret ingredient in her stew is “Freud.”
Neil: “Freud’s dead Hope.”
Natalie: “You... lunatic. I knew you were insane!”
Neil: “I don’t eat pussy, psycho.” (1:20)

Deirdre: “Today we are going to explore sense memory.” (1:21)

Augusten tells Dorothy, “You look at my mom’s craziness as something to entertain you.” (1:24)

Augusten: “Unlike my mom, I guess I had finally tapped into my subconscious... Instead I’m in my mother’s psychiatrist’s house... I want to be grounded for sleeping with a 35-year-old schizophrenic.” (1:27)

Staff restrain Deirdre and insert a bite block. (1:33)

Deirdre recites to her audience: “Grief... as if the house had grown smaller in my grief.” (1:34)

Augusten: “After only a week of observation, my mother has been released from the loony bin.” (1:34)

Deirdre tells Norman’s fiancee Suzanne, “Our first date was at the movies, My Fair Lady. I was so nervous my palms were sweaty...”
Norman: “I don’t drink anymore, Deirdre. I haven’t had a drink in three years.”
Deirdre: “What did he tell you about me, that I was crazy? He’s the crazy one.” (1:34)

Augusten: “Like a sheep or a dog that can predict an earthquake I’ve always been able to sense when my mother is about to go crazy.” (1:37)

Deirdre tells Augusten, “But I do believe that may have been my last psychotic episode. I think I finally broke through to my creative unconscious.” (1:39)

By telephone Augusten tells Hope, “My mom’s gone crazy again...” (1:42)

Augusten tells Neil, “Finch gave her a sedative.”
”You sound crazy.” (1:42)

By telephone Natalie tells Augusten, “He feels like you’re taking your mother’s side in this and he needs your support because he wants to have her committed for good to a hospital.”
Augusten: “I don’t think she needs to be committed.”
Natalie: “Our only skills are restraining psychotics.” (1:46)

Title: “NATALIE graduated from college with a degree in psychology.” (1:56)

Author Augusten Burroughs, himself. (1:57)

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