What would you do if the world was going to end tomorrow? Don McKellar (writer/director/actor) considers his characters carefully. He won't go down the Strange Days style apocalyptic road. He couldn't afford to. Last Night is low on visual excess.

The world is taking its leave on the stroke of midnight - no reason given. It is 6pm, bright sunlight. Supermarkets have been stripped. People roam the streets. There is a rave in the city centre, with big name bands. Panic stays dormant. McKellar's cast are private people. He plays Patrick, who still mourns the loss of his wife and only wants to sit on a roof alone, with champagne and easy listening. His friend, Craig (Callum Keith Rennie), is determined to notch up a black girl, a virgin, his favourite teacher (Genevieve Bujold) and maybe a man before the orgasmic finale. His parents behave like it's Christmas and become nostalgic and prayerful.

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Sandra (Sandra Oh), a Japanese Canadian, is trying to get home to her husband (David Cronenberg), the most anal retentive man on the planet, so they can kill each other together. Patrick tries to help. The roads are blocked with abandoned cars. Sandra becomes emotional, Patrick doesn't. People behave normally - well, almost - with their inhibitions intact, still engaged in small talk.

Only in the final moment is the heart moved. Otherwise, the film feels cold, although it is impossible not to be impressed by McKellar's restraint in the face of justifiable rage.

Reviewed on: 19 Jan 2001
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People come to terms with the fact the end of the world is nigh.
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Director: Don McKellar

Writer: Don McKellar

Starring: Callum Keith Rennie, Genevieve Bujold, Don McKellar, Sandra Oh, David Cronenberg, Sarah Polley, Roberta Maxwell, Robin Gammell

Year: 1999

Runtime: 95 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: US


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