Friday Film Review--"Final Cut"
Sundance Film Festival 2022 planned to be an in-person event but Covid -19 forced a last minute pivot from in-person to on-line.
As much of an honor as it was to have been selected, "Final Cut" was the only film pulled from the line up due to the change. It was a savvy move by producers. Had I been streaming it on my TV at home, I would have deleted it within fifteen minutes and looked for something else. However, had I bought a ticket and been ensconced at the Eccles center, I would have waited it out and been rewarded for my patience.
It reminded me of the first time I saw the late comedian, Andy Kaufman. He emerged through the "The Tonight Show" curtains looking absolutely panicked. In broken English, he awkwardly performed several pitiful, really pi-ti-ful impressions of various stars. He was so bad, literally sweating and it was painful watching him. Then, for his final impression, he turned his back to the cameras, flipped up his collar, and spun around to do the most amazing Elvis impersonation ever.
That’s what this watching this film is like. The film team knew the audience would have to be tolerant for the first half hour in order to appreciate the rest of the film. So, they pulled it. This May, it premiered as the opening night film at the Cannes Film Festival and was released in France the same day.
"Final Cut" is a zombie comedy and the French remake of a 2017 Japanese film entitled "One Cut of the Dead" which became a cult sensation. We all know what that means. Think "Rocky Horror Picture Show", "The Big Lebowski"- some people love it and others hate it.
Director Michel Hazanavicius, who wrote the screenplay, also directed the Academy Award winning film "The Artist", another unique project. The clever title "Final Cut" refers not only to ‘the last scene’ but also to the last of many bloody slashes made throughout the film. The story is about a film crew remaking the original Japanese film when the shoot is overtaken by a group of real zombies.
It’s bloody. It’s odd. But it’s also unique and creative. I enjoyed seeing an unconventional film Sundance audiences would have loved if they’d been able to see it in person.
"Final Cut" is in French with English subtitles. I could not find a rating. It runs 1 hour and 50 bemusing minutes and will hopefully, soon make it to theatres or streaming platforms in the USA.