THE DAY SHALL COME

★★★

A HILARIOUS TAKE ON A FLAWED SYSTEM

MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW
By Ashley Teresa
12th August 2019

The attempt to satirise serious and current social and political issues is a delicate tightrope to walk, but ‘The Day Shall Come’ manages to walk the line pretty well, albeit with a few wobbles along the way. Moses (Marchánt Davis), upon the guidance of God talking to him through a duck (yeah, this movie gets weird), begins his own "farm": a four-person commune of intersecting faiths (five, if you count his young daughter). They don’t believe in guns and rely on the power of will and sheer dumb luck to get them to their next rent payment, waiting patiently for the titular day when white supremacy comes toppling down. Desperate for money and to spread their message, their meetings (which have all the motivational speech power of a Sunday service) are streamed live on Facebook, capturing the attention of the FBI. Unsure if Moses is serious about his beliefs or just out of his mind, the FBI plant an informant in an attempt to try and implicate a clueless Moses in the selling of weapons, making him the latest pawn in an attempt to save a day that doesn't need saving.

'THE DAY SHALL COME' TRAILER

Despite the increasing insanity and tangled web of mess-ups and double-crosses that form the plot progression, the film never once wavers in its enjoyability, even if it does touch on some problematic material (one regular FBI informant is trading off working with them in exchange for immunity from paedophilic activity, which at points is uncomfortably played off for laughs). Furthermore, the fact that the lead black character suffers from delusions of grandeur might leave a bad taste in the mouth, pedalling the notion that the FBI are justified in their following him. The only agent who seems to notice this is Kendra (Anna Kendrick, ‘Pitch Perfect’), who selfishly exploits this to impress her boss. It is heavily implied that this isn’t the first time that the FBI have pulled such a stunt either; the film's tagline states that the plot is “based on a hundred true stories”. Kendra’s boss (Denis O’Hare, ‘Late Night’) is a simpleton who’s more concerned about attending an anniversary dinner with his wife than actually doing his job well.

‘The Day Shall Come’ never takes its scathing satire to its limits.

‘The Day Shall Come’ is the rare film that benefits from having an idea of what to expect going in. The film feels like a splice of the issues tackled in the criminally underseen ‘Blindspotting’ and the style of Michael Bay’s crime comedy ‘Pain and Gain’. It never quite has the balls to go full-on crazy with its premise in the style of ‘Sorry to Bother You’, and given the mental stability of the lead character, the film very well could have been justified in doing so. The humour in the film is handled quite well, even when it oscillates between different degrees of ridiculousness (one scene includes such quips as, "Your dick is probably so small it’s inverted like a belly button").

While ‘The Day Shall Come’ never takes its scathing satire to its limits, it’s an enjoyable romp that’s sure to divide audiences as much as it makes them laugh. The end credits are a chilling reminder of why films like this exist in the first place.

Looking for more Melbourne International Film Festival reviews? Click here to check out our collection of this year's highlights.
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