Happy New Year, Colin Burstead (2018, Ben Wheatley)

Family get-together/squabble movie. It’s less murdery than Wheatley’s other films, and went straight to TV, so I assumed it’d be minor, but it’s really nice, my favorite since at least Sightseers. Kill List star Neil Maskell is beardy vaping Colin, whose sister Hayley Squires (Babs of In Fabric) invites their shunned brother David (Sam Riley: Ian Curtis in Control). David arrives, everyone blows up, he causes a scene as expected, is kicked out then called back, then he flips the movie by being really nice to his parents while Colin’s rage escalates until he storms out. Shot handheld with very snappy editing. I’d had fun with the Wheatleys, but it looks like he’s got himself into Netflix Remake territory with the upcoming Rebecca… maybe I’ll catch up with The Wrong Door series instead.

Other actor highlights: dad is Bill Paterson (dad of Fleabag) and mom is Doon Mackichan, a TV comedy regular ever since The Day Today. Asim Chaudhry is behind the series People Just Do Nothing. And Richard Glover (Sightseers, A Field in England) is Lord Richard, who runs the place they’re renting for the party.

Come on, the headlamp has to be a Kill List reference:

Adam Cook in Cinema Scope 78:

It is through some seriously impressive tonal sleight-of-hand that Wheatley keeps us fixed on the comical and sensationalistic aspects of his intricate plotting only to ultimately segue into something poignant and touching … The humour comes from a keen understanding of human pettiness and the convoluted relationship between people‚Äôs actions and how they feel; so as the latter is revealed, the less funny the proceedings become, and we are left with a complex and troubling assortment of sadness, trauma, and vulnerability.

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