Last night – movie review

To tell the truth, there is no established rule that prevents the release of a film set at Christmas at any time of the year. However, it is curious that on the eve of this new year we can enjoy Last night, a black comedy and Christmas horror film that is difficult to describe, but with a unique and deeply terrifying charm.

Last night, feature debut by the British filmmaker Camille Griffin, is unexpected, but if it had to be explained in greater detail, we would say, then, that it is an apocalyptic Christmas movie with certain reminiscences of Melancholiaby Lars Von Trier. What can go wrong during a gathering of friends at Christmas dinner? Absolutely everything.

One of the main qualities of Last night it has to do with its director’s ability to fuse genres. This is how he builds an elegant English comedy that is as funny as it is depressing. That is to say, the film works thanks to that constant disruption between drama and comedy. As an audience we don’t know whether to laugh or cry and vice versa, but we enjoy it equally. Last night is released as a typical family comedy. But little by little it becomes a depressing and twisted story, but one that never loses a hint of satire, irony and black humor.

From the beginning it is quite disconcerting to listen to Christmas carols and music of the season as “Silent Night”, by Michael Buble or “Merry Christmas”, by Jose Feliciano; while the guests at the Christmas dinner begin to appear on the screen with several secrets in between. Suddenly, terror begins to trickle down among the guests. They, aware of the tragic end, point at each other to reveal their darkest instincts and thoughts.

Keira Knightley anti-Christmas movie Last Night

Keira Knightley y Matthew Goode (Downton Abbey; The Crown) are perfect as hosts. In turn, the film features the performances of Annabelle Wallis (Evil one), Lily-Rose Depp (The king), Sope Dirisu, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, Lucy Punch, and Rufus Jones. All motivated by fun, unexpected and intriguing dynamics between them.

But, perhaps, the great surprise of Last night corresponds to the pre-adolescent cast headed by Roman Griffin Davis (son of the director and protagonist of Jojo Rabbit); his twin brothers Hardy Griffin Davis and Gilby Griffin Davis, and Davida McKenzie (sister of Thomasin McKenzie). His histrionic ability to digest an acid script with a strong psychological charge is admirable. His characters far surpass their adult counterparts, thanks to that sincere, direct and survival attitude in the face of adversity.

In fact, director Camille Griffin takes advantage of that aspect to portray the imperfect relationship between parents and offspring. That frustration of parents of not being able to protect their daughters and sons from danger and the fateful end to which they seem to be doomed. From there, the film pours more questions than answers. Even after the denouement, it is difficult to let go of the question: what would you do in his place?

No doubt Last night represents the concerns of the moment. The film unfolds as a satire on climate change, the pandemic, the uselessness of government in times of crisis, and the consequences of mass hysteria. Of course, it tries to be a moral fable, whose message may be indigestible for certain audiences.

Roman Griffin Davis movie Last Night

Without a doubt, Camille Griffin’s debut in the management chair has been a pleasant surprise by telling us a daring and ingenious story, in the midst of remakes and franchise sequels. Last night dazzles by its fantastic elements in the midst of everyday situations where the characters experience despair and that urgent need to make their repressed dreams a reality alike.

Perhaps that is why there is no better way to talk about the horrors of real life, but through comedy. Last night It is a wonderful cinematographic exercise with a funny social criticism poured into a story with apocalyptic overtones and with the potential to become the quintessential anti-Christmas movie. With an uncomfortable resolution that most likely makes us think of an irremediably sad and bleak fate similar to the end of the world.

Due to the health crisis caused by COVID-19, at Cine PREMIERE we recommend that you review the necessary health measures with the health authorities (especially the General guideline for the mitigation and prevention of COVID-19 in closed public spaces) before going to the cinema to see a movie.

Brenda Medel I love watching, talking, writing and dreaming about cinema. My favorite series is called ‘The Twilight Zone’. I am always singing. All day I think about food. And I don’t take off my sunglasses even to sleep.

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