I Wrote my First Movie Review While Giving Birth to a Camera. It has followed me ever since. Please don't mind the Mess.
James Montague and Craig W. Sanger
This review of the motion picture film movie The Vast of Night is being written during the early part of June of the year of our pants 2020. It’s been a pretty rough year for us Earthlings. If you’re here reading this that means your invasion was successful and we’re all wiped out. Or maybe you’ve saved some of us to use as cheap labor, maybe breed with some of your alien hybrids. Whatever you’re into. We won’t judge. If you review some of our search histories (ahem) you’ll know that a lot of us (Brad) do specific searches for alien/human hybrid/cosplay/hentai.
Before you and your alien overlords read this review perhaps you’d like a recap of the past year.
Pandemic. That sucked.
Cops killing black people. That sucks, but if you did your research before coming here you know that it happens all the time.
People writing online reviews of movies because they have nothing better to do since there are no theaters open to see movies on the big screen/shoot up. It’s happened a lot during the past couple of months.
And that’s where you come in since presumably we’re all gone.
Just to be clear, if you feel like probing, just dress like a Catholic priest to make the transition a little easier. Another quick recap of our recent history will more than explain what the means. It’s f*cked up, I know.
Now onto the review…
Synopsis of the Night
The Vast of Night opens sometime in the 1950s. We know this because George MacFly (Crispy Crispin Glover) is still in high school and is really pervy. His future son Marty (Michael J. Fox) catches him watching a woman ---
Yes. Yes it is. Let’s do this again.
The Vast Synopsis
The Vast of Night opens sometime in the 1950s. You can tell because everyone is super white and smokes because back then smoking was good for you. We’re at a Cayuga High School basketball game. As stated before, every single player is white so the basketball is terrible.
We meet one of our protagonists. His cool cat name (I think this is 50s jargon, IDK) is Everett (Jake Horowitz) and he works at the radio station. He’s at the game because there is something hinky with the sound system. He’ll take a look at it and then go to work.
Everett can do nothing about the sound system because they called the wrong person. As he’s walking to the station he runs into his friend Fay “Betty” Crocker (Sierra “Mist” McCormick). She’s a super keen 16-year old who also smokes. #Healthy
Fay is excited because she got one of those new fangled machines called a “tape recorder”.
Just look it up. I think back then they were as big as a small automobile.
Everett and Fay are “recording” their voices on the tape recorder and listening to it during the playback. What will they think of next?
Everett is walking vast and furious to the station.
Fay is going to work at the switchboard where she works as a switchboard operator.
It’s a 1986 movie starring Tawny Kitaen.
If you know so much quit asking questions.
While at work board switching and switch boarding at the switchboard, Fay hears a mysterious sound that interrupts Everett’s radio broadcast. Needless to say she’s more than a little unsettled.
Like “wrrrrr” then “Sqeeerrr”.
Fay calls Everett at the station and asks if he heard the sound. Everett says no. Fay made a recording of the sound and has Everett listen to it.
Everett soils in his pants because what he hears is so unsettling.
Like “wrrrrr” then “Sqeeerrr”.
No, because there’s just no time for that kind of nonsense.
Everett has a bright idea to play the sound for the station’s listeners and if someone knows what that sound is to please call in. As a thank you the lucky listener will get a 2 cartons of cigarettes. One for themselves, and one for the baby. #Healthy.
After a while, someone calls in.
Someone who is familiar with the sound.
Everett and Fay want to know, but they really don’t want to know.
Because that sound (according to the caller) is nothing but bad news.
I won’t tell you. You’ll have to watch the movie.
What Works With The Vast Of Night
- The opening credits allude to an incredibly famous television show and the next 90 minutes unfold like an extended episode of said show. Homage or straight-up stealing? You’ll have to decide for yourself, but it won’t matter because it’s enjoyable for most of its running time.
- Even if everything feels like you’ve seen something like this before, there are more than a couple of sequences of genuine suspense, some of it stemming entirely from dialogue.
What Doesn’t Work With The Vast of Night
- There are also more than a couple of times when 90 minutes is about 30 minutes too long. It feels like the filmmakers padded scenes just to fulfill the theatrical runtime requirement. You’re never really bored. Okay, sometimes you’re a little bored, but I promise it’s more than worth the journey.
- Some stylistic choices in terms of framing and transitions are pointless and only add to (SEE- part about padding runtime). They call way too much attention to themselves, and not in a good way.
The Vast of Night is far from perfect, but it’s more than worth a watch. You get the strong feeling that director Andrew Patterson’s next movie will be vastly improved.