Edgar Wright directing Sydney Sweeney in a new Barbarella flick? Emptiness incarnate. Sweeney’s Barbarella could be one thing with an interesting, probing-mind director, but with Wright at the helm….forget it.

From my 10.29.21 review of Wright’s Last Night in Soho:

“I had suspected I would probably have a bad time with this, but my God, it’s dreadful. Mindless, gaudy throwaway trash. Not to mention dull by way of a mind-numbing repetition of a #MeToo mantra — older men with bulging wallets are toxic beasts.

“Wright got hold of something cool and throttled in the first two-thirds of Baby Driver, but now it’s gone. The bottom line is that he’s a completely untethered geek fetishist — he’s all about design and visual intensity and comic-book-level characters, and at the same time completely disengaged from anything even vaguely resembling an adult sensibility or, perish the thought, an ability to absorb and re-process life as a semi-complex, multi-layered thing.

“In short, Wright is 47 going on 14.

“In the mid ’60s context of Last Night in Soho, Wright isn’t interested in trying to (let’s get creative!) partially channel the spirit of Roman Polanski by way of recalling or reanimating the 1965 atmosphere of Repulsion…God, what a stone cold slasher masterpiece that film is, especially compared to the slovenly Soho. Repulsion and Last Night in Soho are one year apart, and at the same time based in entirely separate galaxies.

Last Night in Soho essentially says one thing over and over. Ready? Older London men who went to flashy nightclubs in the mid ‘60s were cruel sexist pigs (which many of them doubtless were) and they all wanted to sexually exploit and abuse young women who needed the money. Which made them Hammer horror monsters of the darkest and scuzziest order.

“But that was mid ‘60s London for you! Forget the seminal beginnings of the rock revolution. Forget the Yardbirds. Forget the mid ’60s Soho club scene that had begun to be dominated by London’s rock virtuosos and their many followers. Forget the musical and spiritual explosions conveyed by Aftermath and Rubber Soul. Forget John Lennon and George Harrison being dosed by a dentist in ’65 and experiencing their first-ever acid trip. Forget all that.

“Because in Wright’s view, 1966 London was crammed with creepy, sex-starved, Sexy Beast guys in their 40s and 50s who worshipped the Kray brothers.

“Wright is a truly horrible director of actors. No modifying or keeping it plain and low-key, always presuming that the popcorn inhalers are complete idiots who need everything spelled out in boldface…everything turned up to 11.

“The more I think about it, the more I suspect that Repulsion probably was a major influence upon Last Night in Soho. The difference is that Polanski was and is a visionary, go-his-own-way genius, and Wright is an adolescent shoveller of familiar tropes and garish visual impressions.”