The pleasure derived from another person’s misfortune.
The film opens with a typical weekend breakfast chat show called ‘Sally on the Weekend’. Sally is interviewing an eccentric Austrian professor who is shamelessly plugging his new book ‘Schadenfreude’. The book and indeed the word, explores this dark concept of how we take a sadistic pleasure out of other people’s misfortune’s. “Just like the press” he points out.
The media circus then moves to New Street Junction, a dead end suburb, which can only boast the most sign-posts in Britain. The press are decending again on the local cannon fodder, just a year after they were scrutinised and ridiculed by a trashy tabloid show ‘The Scoop’. The malicious, self-important TV presenter of the show, Jeremy O’Reilly, has been invited back by the landlord of the local pub and his regulars as they seek their revenge.
They plot a practical joke, but just when the world’s media are intently watching, the plan goes horribly wrong and culminates in the death of the self important local actress, Paige Boston. A media witch hunt ensues and a frenzy kicks off as presenters, journalists and gossipers all begin to spin the story. Welcome to a week in modern media and the question “Who killed Paige Boston?”
SCHADENFREUDE – A NOUN:
On a typical Sunday morning chat-show, Sally, a typical daytime TV chat-show host is interviewing an eccentric Austrian professor who has a new book to plug. The book, entitled Schadenfreude, explores the idea that human beings tend to take pleasure in the misfortunes of others. As the professor points out, nowhere is Schadenfreude more prevalent than in the media.
At the heart of the film is the community and neighbourhood of New Street Junction, a place whose only claim to fame is having more signs than anywhere else in Britain; the Press are descending on the locals of this dead-end suburb for the second time.
A year ago the malicious and self-important TV presenter Jeremy O Reilly – with the help of his cohorts Marge and Penrott – ridiculed New Street Junction’s inhabitants on his tabloid show, The Scoop. A year later they and other members of the press have been invited back by the Landlord of the local pub; he and his regulars are seeking their revenge. As the Landlord, The Gambler, his wife The Midwife, Fat Stu, Jobs The Inventor, Rupa The Hacker, and infamous local Li’l Pisshead carry out their practical joke, things go horribly wrong and Paige Boston winds up dead. The witch hunt begins and frenzy ensues as presenters, policemen, gossips and journalists all race to spin the story in an attempt to answer the question:
Who Killed Paige Boston?
Welcome to Schadenfreude.