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Last Night


I had a lot of trouble deciding on a film to watch last night, so I’ll be honest in saying I literally only chose Last Night because I hadn’t seen a Keira Knightley movie in a while. I was also curious to see Sam Worthington in a non-action film, but realistically it was all about Knightley. Unfortunately, there was very little about Last Night that was actually interesting.

Grade:

Joanna (Knightley) and Michael (Worthington) are going through a bit of a rough patch in their marriage when they attend one of Michael’s work parties and Joanna becomes unnecessarily jealous of Michael’s relationship with a coworker (Eva Mendes). The majority of the film covers the next evening when Michael is in Philadelphia on a business trip and Joanna runs into an old flame as they both struggle fighting the temptations to be unfaithful.

No one in this film is likable. Joanna is insecure to a fault and allows that to get in the way of enjoying her time with Michael, who can’t seem to develop emotions about anything. Meanwhile, Laura (Mendes) is a somewhat terrible person for her actions, despite having a minor role, and Alex (Guillaume Canet), the former flame, seems to instantly forget about his girlfriend in Paris while he semi-stalks Joanna. They are simply bad people doing deceitful things and this becomes apparent within the first ten minutes.

If a film hasn’t even reached the ten-minute mark and I can tell I won’t like it, something is wrong. Right away, Joanna pushes herself to the forefront as an unpleasant person disguised as a wholesome British woman. She has nice qualities – I don’t want to be too negative – but she is incapable of forcefully making decisions. Meanwhile, Michael – played unconvincingly by Worthington – seems indifferent to the world as if he is looking for a way to start a new life. You never get the sense that he truly is happy with his current life, despite his protests to the contrary.

The whole film feels like Conversations with Other Women, but you don’t care about Joanna and Michael’s future like you did with Eckhart and Carter’s characters. The two aspects of the film that I enjoyed were Knightley using an American accent to deal with a machine and the French Patrick Dempsey (Canet) actually showing some heart. Also, Griffin Dunne – most recently of House of Lies fame – has an amusing, personality defining role.

 

In the end, we get another open-ending that isn’t open-ended because it is blatantly obvious where the relationship is headed. Some will say the script is well written, but only in the sense that we get a good look at a somewhat realistic relationship crumbling under the weight of temptation (physical and emotional). Regardless, my opinions of Knightley and Worthington didn’t change. You won’t miss much by not watching; you won’t gain much from watching.

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