Film review – Last Night in Soho

Last Night in Soho (MA)

Directed by: Edgar Wright

Starring: Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Review by: Julian Wright

Edgar Wright turns his attention to nostalgia, mystery and murder with the nightmarish Last Night in Soho.

Eloise “Ellie” Turner (Thomasin McKenzie), who is obsessed with sixties fashion and music, leaves her small, quiet town and heads to big city London to study fashion design – her passion and future career.

Her excitement and enthusiasm soon fades when she is bunked in cramped student accommodation with mean girl Jocasta (Synnove Karlsen) and is made to feel like an outsider by her peers.

Unable to fit in, Ellie finds a small flat to call her own, rented to her by landlord Ms Collins (Diana Rigg) who has some firm rules for her new tenant.

Ellie begins to dream about young woman from the sixties Sandie (Aya Taylor-Joy), who pursues her dream of being a dancer, but falls in with the wrong manager Jack (Matt Smith), who forces her into an exploitative trade.

But Ellie is convinced Sandie was a real person, and when the visions show Sandie’s murder, Ellie suspects the murderer is still alive, and is possibly one of the elderly customers at the bar she works.

Past and present, dreams and reality are beautifully blended and blurred in this thriller/horror with co-writer/director Edgar Wright’s dash of signature humour. His use of mirrors and in-camera tricks are incredibly clever and exciting to watch.

Last Night in Soho is a visually sumptuous film, with Wright employing Chung-hoon Chung as cinematographer to lens what is now one of the most gorgeously looking horror films this year. But it is more than just aesthetics for Wright.

While Wright tends to get a little heavy handed with the delivery of his “message” in the later stages of the film, this post “Me Too” thriller provides substance with its scares and is more than just a visual feast with an adoration for the sixites.

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