By midlandsmovies, Jul 23 2019 08:26PM
Midlands Review - Date Night
Directed by Nisaro Karim
Five Pence Productions
From Five Pence Productions comes Date Night, a short film about an awkward blind date that ends in unexpected disaster. What's the worst that could happen?
Date Night focuses on Serena and Reginald, two single adults who have organised a date through matching on Tinder, however when Reginald arrives both his and Serena's expectations of a successful match plummet.
From the off their personalities clash, not helped by the fact that neither are impressed with the others actual appearance. We can see Reginald has used older pictures of himself where he used to boast thick, brown hair whilst Serena has been accused of resembling nothing like her dating profile pictures which she and other patrons disagree with.
Their awkward exchange is the films highlight as they go back and forth trading off insults, exasperated with the result of the hook-up. The director, Nisaro Karim, does a great job at capturing Reginald's obnoxious behaviour as he eats with his mouth open, is rude to fellow customers and confesses how working out is similar to an orgasm. It comes as no surprise to the viewer when Serena finally throws in the towel then throws on her shawl to leave the building, ending the date.
What does surprise the view however is the three armed robbers that rush through the restaurants doors before Serena can exit, telling everyone to put their hands up and be silent. Serena and Reginald's date just got worse, much worse.
As I was watching for the first time I was surprised by the change in tone as the masked raiders enter the scene, initially I was expecting them to join as more comic relief as that was the mood that had been set early on.
As police sirens echo closer and closer so do the nerves of the assailants as they ponder their next move, this final act is reminiscent of films like Collateral or Heat, Michael Mann crime films with a very American feel to them.
Whilst I could see the effort of ambitiously creating such a huge sub-plot this ultimately hindered the film as the gulf in tone from what the film started with was too much, it felt like two different films spliced together.
Written and directed by Nisaro Karim, a known talent amongst the Midlands independent film scene, Date Night serves as his first time behind the camera which is evident as his excitement and ambition spills onto the screen. He is helped by his director of photography Tomek Zontek who helps capture the vibrant Birmingham city as well as shooting the main action inside local restaurant The Gateway to India.
As the credits roll you are left with an undeniable impression Karim has more stories to tell and will not be far behind with his second short film.