“Rough Night” Review ✦✦✦✧✧

22 August, 2017

Director: Lucia Aniello
Screenwriters: Lucia Aniello, Paul W. Downs
Director of Photography: Sean Porter
Scarlett Johansson, Jillian Bell, Kate McKinnon

Synopsis: A workaholic bride-to-be reluctantly agrees to attend a bachelorette party hosted by her college friends but their night of partying turns sour after they accidentally kill a male stripper while under the influence.

Rough Night Review:

Written as a standard ‘recipe for disaster’ farce but heavily reliant on the banter shared between its lead players, “Rough Night” snorts cocaine and kills strippers before a bad joke even has time to land a punchline, throwing its night of fun out the window without resorting to the comedic drivel of last year’s terrible string of party movies. Less “Office Christmas Party” and more madcap thriller with a hilarious sense of humour, the movie taunts with the idea of becoming a rehashed episode of “Dexter” before opting for “Sister Act” over an all-female re-run of “CSI: Miami”.

Benefitting greatly from the precision of archetypal humour, “Rough Night” plays to the strengths of a handful of comedians as Kate McKinnon and Jillian Bell provide the kookiness needed to offset Scarlett Johansson’s tight-lipped delivery. Turning a few awkward gags into a truly notable performance, ScarJo scoffs at her casting as much as the audience does, knowing she’s too good for the role yet revelling in every moment of it as her lame fiancé sips wine while she lets loose on the dancefloor, gluing together a dysfunctional troupe of ridiculously mismatched friends who provide the love and support needed to overcome adversity.

Avoiding the trappings of identity politics by landing a joke in everyone’s direction, “Rough Night” laughs at sex workers and mafia men with the same gall as it chuckles in the direction of hippies and closet lesbians, finding common ground between its leading ladies as McKinnon flip-flops her way into hilarity. Returning like a born and bred Australian and flying off a jet ski in a sequence of pure childish magic, McKinnon shines in her truest form, stealing every scene and providing unforgettable closing tune “The Kiwi Song” while Zoë Kravitz and Ilana Glazer prove the be two of the finest low-key lovers of the year as the soon-to-be divorcee and angry activist who stick together like Tweedledum and Tweedledee while catastrophe unfolds before their eyes.


Review Date
Rough Night