Sunday, May 04, 2014

Penny Thoughts ‘14—The Last Supper (1995) ***

R, 92 min.
Director: Stacy Title
Writer: Dan Rosen
Starring: Cameron Diaz, Ron Eldard, Annabeth Gish, Jonathan Penner, Courtney B. Vance, Bill Paxton, Nora Dunn, Ron Perlman, Charles Durning, Mark Harmon, Jason Alexander, Rachel Chagall

“The Last Supper” is a little indie black comedy that slid in under the radar in the mid-90s, which is surprising because much of its cast was in the process of quickly climbing the rungs of fame. It is not some religious representation, as some might gather from its title. It’s more like an episode of “The Outer Limits” for the politico mindset.

The movie is about some post grads living the sort of commune type of lifestyle that a career of being a student encourages, spewing their thoughts about the world’s injustices but never really doing anything about them until one evening when one of them is given a ride home after his car breaks down. The guy who brings him turns out to have some pretty extreme views on the world that border on fascism. One thing leads to another and an altercation leads to the man’s accidental death. Then these liberals get it into their heads that this is how they might actually be able to do something about the social injustices they perceive in the world, and soon they have a yard full of bodies.

The movie is clever in how it presents its ideas and sticks to their premise of inviting people to dinner to give them a chance to show they aren’t totally unredeemable. It’s nice to see the liberals loose their way for once. Eventually they’re considering killing people just because they aren’t well read. Ron Perlman plays a Rush Limbaugh type of pundit who becomes their ultimate goal for a dinner guest. When they finally do get him at their table he surprises them by presenting very reasonable arguments and viewpoints.

Its twist is fun, and it has some pretty good laughs in it to go along with a thought-provoking premise. It isn’t an incredible movie, but it’s worth a look if you’re looking for something a little off the beaten path. It’s also quite interesting to go back and see a big name star like Cameron Diaz before her name was quite so big.

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