These days there are plenty of reasons to be wary of going in to a movie theater. There are are least 19 of them, with several variants thereof. But one of horror’s time-honored traditions is to find more supremely violent reasons to stay out of a picture house. The new Uruguayan film The Last Matinee hearkens back to those movies with a supremely gory and stylistic love letter to ’80s Italian horror. Take a look at the very NSFW red band trailer.
Maximiliano Contenti’s The Last Matinee takes place in 1993 Montevideo. On a super rainy day, a handful of people decide to check out the final showing of a not-very-good horror movie at a majestic old movie palace on its way out. The perfect place to take a first date, to get drunk with friends… or to be a crazy psycho murderer. Filmmaker Ricardo Islas plays the horrifying killer; especially funny considering the “bad horror movie” on the screen is Islas’ own Frankenstein: Day of the Beast. Gotta love someone who doesn’t take himself seriously.
With its neon lighting and synth score, The Last Matinee calls to mind movies like Lamberto Bava’s Demons, in which patrons of a packed cinema on opening night fall victim to a monstrous, carnivorous plague. A much smaller cast here, but no less grotesque. It’s a fun, irreverent riff on the hyper-violent slasher movies of the ’80s, with a little bit of the giallo aesthetic thrown in for good measure.
The audience attending the last showing of a horror film in a small downtown cinema are terrorized by a murderer who begins to pick them off, one by one. The only person to notice that something strange is going on is the projectionist’s daughter.
The Last Matinee will come to digital, DVD, and on-demand on August 24.