That's not to say people don't get hurt in Happy New Year, Colin Burstead - Doon Mackichan stumbles within the first 15 minutes and spends half of the film with a bag of frozen peas strapped to her ankle - but the pain is primarily emotional rather than physical. Colin (Neil Maskell) has decided to hire a grand country mansion for his family's New Year's Eve party, but when we see him nervously vaping and listening to meditation music under the opening credits, we can sense that he's already regretting this decision. The family has barely settled at Cumberland House before Colin has to deal with his mother's ankle injury and his almost bankrupt father (Bill Paterson) tapping him for an emergency loan, and every additional guest only seems to add to Colin's anxiety. The wild card is David (Sam Riley), Colin's tearaway brother, who has been persona non grata since some unspecified transgression five years earlier. He has been invited by their sister Gini (Hayley Squires) as a surprise for their mother, but he's a most unwelcome surprise for the many partygoers who still harbour ill feelings towards him.
Read the rest of my review in the December 2018 issue of Sight & Sound