THE LAST LAUGH * USA 2020 Dir: Jeremy Berg. 82 mins
Approaching a major gig, comedian Myles (Steve Vanderzee) realizes this is his last shot at the big-time when his agent Nelson (Eric Stone) delivers the news about what he had to do to get the slot. Things aren’t easier when he meets Bethany (Meranda Long) and Andy (Marcus Leopard), workers at the theater who tell him tales about the theaters’ haunted past. It gets even worse when he discovers several dead bodies strewn around the building indicating a serial killer is loose in the building killing everyone one-by-one that only he seems to believe exists. As it gets closer to his performance the body-count continues to rise, and when the time comes he finds himself forced to choose between dealing with the killer or continuing to get his shot at the limelight.
There really isn’t a lot to like about “The Last Laugh.” About the only time this works is detailing the atmosphere of the situation which builds the killer lurking in the building, which results in some decent stalking and kill scenes when he springs forth and strikes against the disbelieving victims. However, beyond that, this one has a lot of problems starting with the informed attribute of his comedy prowess. For someone we’re told is on the cusp of a breakthrough none of his stand-up routines are remotely funny. The sarcastic quips aren’t much of anything and we’re never given anything to determine how good he is. That leaves long stretches here where it’s rather dull and uneventful, which for a film this short is a truly damaging feature to not have a lot interesting going on. As well, the whole idea of not going to the police with the news of the killers’ rampage which is never reported despite being aware of something wrong from the beginning, is unacceptable and an example of the bad writing and low-quality featured here.
Review by Don Anelli