Last Christmas is a Christmas set romantic comedy featuring Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding. Emilia Clarke plays Kate a women whose life is falling apart, following a heart problem the Christmas before, she is working a dead-end job, running out of friends and about to have to go and live back at home. Yes, this character has been done 100 times before, but there is something so wholesome and relatable about the way Clarke plays the character, that you instantly root for her.
The same can be said of Kate’s love interest Tom, he is mysterious and enigmatic, keeping the world at an arms length. Once again there is nothing new about this character type, but Golding’s portrayal is so charming and, endearing that you can’t wait to see him; just like Kate.
The love story between them feel relatable and, the audience really wants them to get together by the end of the film; especially after one heartfelt scene when Kate tells Tom about her heart problems.
However, it is not meant to be. Spoilers here if you haven’t seen it.
Just when it seems as though Kate and Tom are going to get together, it is revealed Tom’s dead. He died last Christmas and, his heart was given to Kate through an organ transplant. When the twist hits you, you will feel one of two ways about it: either you will think it is a bittersweet masterstroke or, it will break your heart. I fell into the latter camp.
My other complaint about the film is there is a needless Brexit plotline in it that feels forced in, Last Christmas would function perfectly well without it, it doesn’t really come up much and, I do wonder why it was included. I feel as though it was to be current and political, but I feel it dated the film and made me groan.
The performances were all also fantastic, Golding and Clarke especially, in fact, I think this might be Emilia Clarke’s best performance yet, she is the heart and soul of the film. The direction is also strong by Paul Feig, it is very clearly a Paul Feig film with all the trimmings, which I personally love but, he is an acquired taste; if you like his other films you will like this.
I think the ending is heartwarming and sweet, as it puts the focus more on Kate’s character development rather than her getting the guy and having the happily ever after ending; that most films like this do. To some, this could become a Christmas classic, however, for those who are comparing this film to the likes of Love Actually then it won’t come off favorably.
A nice turn your brain off, happy Christmas film, Clarke and Golding are great. Watch it and be merry.
Reviewed by Luke