Last Night in Soho

Last Night in Soho ★★

usually at its worst, edgar wright’s work annoys and frustrates me but that mostly boils down to a difference in comedic taste. i honestly went into last night in soho with a slightly more open mind because i felt like his stylistic flourishes might work better in horror as opposed to comedy. but rather than being pissed off by dorky quips and soyfacing, i was left feeling rather empty at a film that is all flash in the pan. 

certainly there is a lot of visually impressive psychadelic imagery but it’s far more self consciously showy than any of the gialli that ive seen. wrights impression of giallo seems to be “bisexual lighting” and not much else. the elaborate camera movement and visual effects are too vibrant and bright. there’s no darkness or suspense. nothing about the film is particularly frightening or transgressive. the story is filled with sex clubs, prostitutes and pimps but you’d hardly be able to tell. it has a clear feminist bent but because of that, it feels like wright is too afraid to be shocking, problematic or provocative in any way. 

all that you’re left with is an antiseptic giallo riff. stylish but sexless. you get some shots of scheming hands but none of the blood and guts. no doubt in my mind that wright has seen and appreciates giallo films but he’s eliminated so much here of what makes gialli complicated, challenging, and unsettling. last night in soho isn’t actively irritating, just pointless and forgettable.

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