Last Night In Soho Movie Review
OVERVIEW | If you are a horror fan, or a fan of Edgar Wright, you will have a good time with this story. It’s not necessarily the type of horror film that will haunt your dreams, but it is a fun psychological thriller experience. I highly recommend you try to catch this one in theaters, because of how masterful the sound and editing are in this film.
October 29, 2021
Last Night In Soho Movie Review | One of my most anticipated films of the year, Last Night In Soho (2021) is the latest Edgar Wright picture to grace the big screen. A different kind of experience compared to the rest of his catalog, this flick is a full on horror thriller. Edgar Wright has made a career out of cheeky films that tend not to take themselves too seriously, that lean into the silliness with curated music selections, and great editing. I was excited to learn that he was stepping out of his comfort zone and trying something new with the horror genre. In this film, we follow a fashion student studying in London, who after moving into a new flat, starts to experience vivid dreams of a glamorous woman from the 1960’s. These dreams begin to take a dark turn and her experiences when awake and asleep start to blur her reality.
I was curious to find out how Edgar Wright’s style would shine through in Last Night In Soho, and I was pleasantly surprised at the evolution of his craft in relation to a completely new genre. We tend to see directors that find success in a specific genre, don’t usually sway too far out of their comfort zones as their career progresses. With films such as Shaun of the Dead (2004), Hot Fuzz (2007) and Scott Pilgrim Vs The World (2013), Wright found himself in a comfortable pocket finding success with comedy centric films. Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz were built around a horror foundation, but the silliness outweighed the scary. Then in 2017, he wrote and directed the action thriller Baby Driver, which was his first venture away from the comedy focused genre. Even though Baby Driver wasn’t silly like his first few films, he found just as much success and his style evolved with it.
Last Night In Soho Movie Review
One of the best aspects of Edgar Wright films are the ways in which he bridges scenes with his editing style. He tends to lean into the audible experience of his films to enhance the way the story progresses from moment to moment. Typically utilizing hand picked song selections to express the feelings of the characters. This style shines through wonderfully in Last Night in Soho. The main character is hooked on classic 1960’s tunes that her grandma raised her on. Throughout the story, we are introduced to a number of songs that help to move her experience along and bridge the gap between reality and her fever dream state. Through the use of clever sound design and timing, Last Night in Soho is a master class in editing. There are several moments where the main character is suddenly awoken from her dream state and we are gracefully pulled out of the horrors she’s experiencing with an audible bridge between her two realities. They are extremely subtle, but very affective at conveying the detachment from reality our character is going through. Last Night in Soho has the best and most creative sound design I have heard this year so far.
This film is also graced with wonderful performances from the main cast. Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy and Matt Smith provide passionate and convincing performances for their characters. I’m a big fan of these three actors and I was excited to see all of them in the same film. Anya Taylor-Joy and Matt Smith have terrific scene chemistry and a lot of the most gripping parts of the film are the scenes in which these two are interacting in the seedy underbelly of 1960’s Soho. Unfortunately we don’t get a lot of dialogue interaction between McKenzie and Joy/Smith due to her character being more of a third wheel perspective to their story, but she is incredible in this film. Thomasin McKenzie first caught my attention with her moving performance in JoJo Rabbit (2019), and I’m extremely excited to see her career progress. I feel like her and Anya Taylor-Joy are the up and coming bright futures for Hollywood and I can’t wait to see them in more and more films.
Last Night in Soho is absolutely gorgeous to look at. The art department truly nailed the look and feel of 1960’s London, which helped to strengthen the psychological voyage the main character takes us through in her dreams. It also helps to heighten the creepiness factor of when her two realities begin to blur. This film is rooted in the world of fashion and I think the wardrobe department deserves a lot of credit to the success of this piece as well. All of the outfits and costumes the characters wear reinforce the time period the story takes us through.
I love pretty much every aspect of this film, but I feel like the story doesn’t stick it’s landing. I was fully invested in the entire story until the last few minutes. I just feel like the tail end of the 3rd act gets a little lost and leaves me with a lot of questions. It kind of feels like an ending you would experience in a M. Night Shyamalan film. The ending doesn’t completely ruin the rest of the story for me, but it still leaves a little bit of a bad taste in my mouth.
If you are a horror fan, or a fan of Edgar Wright, you will have a good time with this story. It’s not necessarily the type of horror film that will haunt your dreams, but it is a fun psychological thriller experience. I highly recommend you try to catch this one in theaters, because of how masterful the sound and editing are in this film. | Last Night In Soho Movie Review