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Masterpiece Cinema - Last Night

 article about Top movie reviews
Hey, folks.

So here we are for a second week and a
second column. Were working with the title of Masterpiece Cinema for
the moment, but I'm not really overly happy with that, so if you have a
better idea for a name, email it to me.

That pretty much takes care of the housekeeping duties, so how about we get to this weeks movie?

Last Night

Starring Don McKellar, Sandra Oh, Sarah Polley, Trent McMullen.
Written by Don McKellar
Directed by Don McKellar

Genre:
Drama (There are so many End of the World movies now that, like
football movies and high school movies, they deserve their own section
at Blockbuster)
Released: 1998
Running time: 95 minutes.
Rated: R (American rating for sexuality, language and brief violence).
IMDb link: http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0156729/

Now
here's a modern classic that very few people have heard of or seen (at
least in the circles in which I run). Written and directed by Canadian
auteur Don McKellar, Last Night tells the story of the end of the world.

Unlike
most films that tackle this subject, Last Night deals with the subject
manner in a very realistic, subdued way. Theres no Bruce Willis action
figure tie-in, there's no alien bug monsters, there's no Stephen
King-esque super flu. In fact, were never even definitely told what
kind of doom is impending (though the light in the sky implies fairly
heavily that either a meteors about to hit or the suns going to
explode. Both Very Bad Things to be happening).

Writer/director
McKellar stars as Patrick Wheeler, a guy whos hoping he can get through
the tears and tediousness of his family get-together before he can go
off and die the way he wants to with a nice bottle of wine and the
stereo playing a favourite song.

At the same time, Sandra
(played by Sandra Oh, who I recognized from Arli$$, but once again no
one I know has seen that show), is trying to get across town so that
she and her husband can also die the way they want to by mutual suicide.

Patricks
best friend, Alex, has holed himself up in his apartment during the
final hours of the human race, making his way through his To Do list
the things he always wanted to do sexually but never had the
chance/guts to do. This includes having sex with a black woman, his
high school teacher, and a virgin, amongst many other things.

These
are only three of the stories that are told throughout this tense piece
of cinema, and it's not long before all the characters lives are
interweaving, each of them near desperation point as the end of the
world gets ever closer.

Sounds kind of depressing, doesn't it?
And it is. But it's still an incredibly great movie to watch that
really grabs you and doesnt let you go, leaving you breathless and
heartbroken at the end. It's a story told with sensitivity and ability,
and stars some great Canadian talent (including Sarah Polley from Go
and infamous director David Cronenberg, who worked with McKellar again
later on in Cronenbergs eXistenZ).

And hey, McKellars appeared
on Degrassi: The Next Generation, as the butthole fianc of old school
character Caitlin Ryan. Anyone that cool is well deserving of your tape
rental dollars. If they ever release it down here in Australia on DVD,
you can bet Ill be adding it to my collection. I highly recommend you
do the same.

Next Week: Liked Amelie? We take a look at the directors earlier work.


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