Another Excellent Day Image

Another Excellent Day

By Derick McDuff | February 13, 2024

Just as with television in the 1950s and 60s, it’s impossible to deny the impact that TikTok is having on film (and the world at large) today. When TV began taking eyeballs away from movie screens, some filmmakers began differentiating themselves from the format, while others went the opposite way, embracing the trends of their competition. The same can be said for filmmakers today trying to compete with three-minute skits on a tiny screen. While films like Oppenheimer use 70mm film on a grand scale projected on an IMAX screen to stand apart from something you’d see on your phone, Another Excellent Day is a film firmly made for the TikTok generation.

The film’s quick pace, often jumping from plotline to plotline and character to character, critique of capitalism, meta-commentary on itself, queer subtext, and often absurdist humor have clearly been influenced by the kind of videos you’d scroll past. Even the look of the film is reminiscent of the filters thrown onto videos custom-made for the app. Like last year’s best picture winner, Everything Everywhere All At Once, the film grew out of the bizarre yet beautiful online culture that sprouted up with the widespread availability of filmmaking tools made available to anyone with a phone.

“Ritchie, a screenwriter stuck in a rut, who encounters Mickey, a low level thug with a love for anything that will get his blood pumping.”

Described as a “fantasy gangster comedy,” the plot of the film involves Ritchie, a screenwriter stuck in a rut, who encounters Mickey, a low-level thug with love for anything that will get his blood pumping. Their friendship sparks something in Richie, both personally and creatively. He begins to dream of a better life, which eventually becomes a literal manifestation. Stuck in an unfulfilled relationship, he manifests his “dream girl,” Lailah, who, aside from being someone he’s incredibly physically attracted to, also encourages him creatively. Lailah even goes as far as to tell him they can only be together if he follows his dreams of making a film.

Another Excellent Day also cleverly comments on the dark side of ambition and dreams when Mickey imagines the handsome and successful gangster Daemon, a modern-day Tyler Durden. Through a somewhat convoluted series of events, Daemon ends up capturing or controlling both Lailah and Ritchie’s screenplay, and the third act involves an elaborate rescue in Mexico. When two peoples’ fantasies meet, the results can be unpredictable, to say the least, and the film actually offers a unique commentary on the collaborative creative process.

Aside from the main characters and their imaginary friends, the film is populated by a number of colorful supporting characters. Standouts include a man wearing a panda suit known as Panda and the rebellious lesbian Melinda. They are part of the sheer multitude of things the film throws at its audience in its slim hour-and-a-half runtime. While most of the characters, jokes, and plots hit, there are one or two misfires as well, including a bizarre kidnapping subplot perpetrated by the heroes. However, before you can even think about something that didn’t quite hit, you’ve seen three of four things that did.

If you’d like to check out the film it’s actually currently streaming, where else but on Tubi. That should come as no surprise. The service is like an island of misfit toys, full of things that are too weird, too indie, and perhaps even too unpolished to show up anywhere else. Well, except for TikTok, that is.

Another Excellent Day (2023)

Directed: Gilles Gambino

Written: Alessandro Di Renzo, Gilles Gambino, Pierre Jauze

Starring: Ben Vinnicombe, James Giblin, David Chevers, Annick Weerts, Stephanie Figueira, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Another Excellent Day Image

"…firmly made for the TikTok generation."

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