It’s almost mid November and Christmas mood is definitely in the air… in fact it’s been in the air for some time if you look at retail stores everywhere as early as late September, LOL! Well, I haven’t quite put up my holiday decorations yet but I know I will be in the mood for Christmas movie-watching soon, and this UK dark comedy definitely piqued my interest!
In true British fashion, (while the rest of the world faces impending doom), a group of old friends reunite to celebrate Christmas in the comfort of an idyllic country home.
Oh boy… it’s not exactly the most wonderful time of the year, is it? Not sure about the timing given we’re pretty much still in a pandemic. According to IMDb trivia, its star Keira Knightley said the film was finished shooting just before UK’s first Covid and they had to reshoot it in September of last year.
To be honest, I hadn’t read the premise when I clicked on the trailer… well it sure seems that way at first as we see a beautiful family doing a Zoom chat with granny and then getting ready for a Christmas dinner with friends. Though of course something seems off right away when Keira’s character said ‘Here’s to the lives that we’ve shared!’ and another says something about the ‘Queen is in a bunker somewhere filled with tins of baked beans and dog food.’ Say what?!
Well, the Brits are known for their dark humor and what could be more wacky than a Christmas apocalypse… it’s not Santa coming down from your chimney, it’s the angel of death in the form of deadly poisonous gas. Yikes! Dark comedies are tricky, especially when you mix a hopeful, jolly time like Christmas with end-of-the-world bleakness. I read that the script was written before Covid hits, so what a twist of fate that the film ends up being released during a seemingly-endless pandemic where impending doom is not exactly that far fetched.
Not all doom and gloom though… I’m excited to see Knightley teaming up with Matthew Goode (who should be in way more movies!) … Jane Austen fans would know them as Elizabeth Bennett and George Wickham (in Pride & Prejudice and Death Comes to Pemberley miniseries, respectively).
There’s also Lucy Punch (love her in the series Vexed with Toby Stephens!), Annabella Wallis, Trudie Styler (yes, Sting’s wife is playing the grandma!) and Lily-Rose Depp as the only American in the ensemble cast. This is the feature-film debut for writer-director Camille Griffin, whose son Roman Griffin Davis won acclaims in JoJo Rabbit. Roman is in the film along with his two siblings, Gilby Griffin Davis & Hardy Griffin Davis.
Well, the trailer promises something hilarious and heart-rending … just don’t expect the typical merry, feel-good holiday fare, though it just might make us appreciate the lives we still do have after seeing this movie!