It surprisingly feels like many people haven’t seen Camille Griffins Silent Night.
It’s not anything great but it feels like a movie that would stir up some sort of discourse. Something that a similar (granted bigger) movie like Don’t Look Up brought with it. For what it’s worth, it’s an entirely original Christmas movie but not one for the whole family to enjoy. A super dark Christmas Rom Com Horror hybrid, Silent Night is about a group of rich brits getting together for their final Christmas celebration thanks to a worldwide environmental disaster. Poisonous storms are set to sweep through the luxurious countryside before dawn, killing everyone.
So there’s just enough time to be merry and bright one last time before you take your government issued suicide pill and peacefully drift off into the unknown at the same time as your loved ones….unless you’d rather die painfully potentially all alone, suffocating slowly. If you forget about how the night is supposed to end, it’s a rather fun time. Great cast led by Kiera Knightley, Matthew Goode, Roman Griffin Davis, Annabelle Wallis, Lily-Rose Depp, Sope Dirisu, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, Lucy Punch and Rufus Jones. You may find yourself not wanting the festive night to end. Because at the end of that night is regret, sadness, a waving of the white flag– we fucked the planet up for good and so this is our punishment– death. Mother nature is no longer nurturing.
Silent Night is a natural disaster movie disguised as a Christmas movie. It hides the impending doom for as long as it can with such a perfect festive evening but it’s clearly not enough to keep the dirty little secret under the rug for very long and that’s telling. It’s no longer a matter of if but when and the fact that the characters in Silent Night assumes that time for such a disasterous event is now, is telling as well. Even if they were led to believe all of this by the scientific community. We’ve screwed up our planet so badly that even if this isn’t the one that ends humanity, we are safe to assume it could be. That’s immensely depressing to think about.
What Silent Night also does best is expose how flawed the whole idea of dying peacefully and together with those closest in your life can really be, and it gets ridiculously messy and depressing.
You have 5 minutes before the pill kicks in so you better be ready for the end. And it turns out that a lot of the characters just aren’t ready for the long goodbye, forgetting beverages, your favorite doll, forgetting to say goodbye to a loved one, mistiming the ingestion of your pill or just not taking one at all, the point is there is just so much that can go wrong and it does. Who could blame someone for not being ready for an untimely end. I know I wouldn’t be.
But the darkest part of all is the ending. If you think the concept itself is disturbing just wait until you see what’s left behind by the mass hysteria of an environmental disaster. Even if that natural disaster isn’t fatal this time or the next time—it’s only a matter of time before the big one– the final one– hits.