If it’s one thing the English do well, it’s farce *gestures vaguely at entire sociopolitical state of the nation*. And while Sally Potter’s black-and-white comedy is the epitome of the genre, it’s a far cry from your Weekend at Bernie’s and Pink Panthers, focusing instead on the more relatable passive-aggressive undercurrents of an uppermiddle class soirée, and the hilarity that follows.
An all-star cast ensures the witty, droll script is effortlessly delivered, with Kristin Scott Thomas as a high-flying politician with cause to throw the titular soirée, while standout Patricia Clarkson, Cillian Murphy and more round out the ensemble with suitably amusing turns.
Politics, relationships, and philosophy are ridiculed in equal measure, as Potter’s script ricochets between the group’s simmering antagonisms, and longhidden secrets emerge to calamitous results.
While it’s arguable it’d be better served as a stage production, the mega-cast justifies its cinematic status, while snappy pacing and a taut edit ensures that, like the best kind of party, it flies by. Smart, snarky and ludicrous, this is one shindig you’ll want to RSVP to.