Post Party is a visually interesting and fun aside about the morning after a party.
There’s nothing quite like a large cast in a short, small film but Post Party, a film by Jeff Chan and Andrew Rhymer, is one which truly shines. Sometimes, films that have lots of characters can feel overwhelming to look at. However, the kinetic energy in Post Party resolves any issue one might have with multiple characters all interacting at once. Owing much of its success to a stellar cast and wide open setting, Post Party showcases a story told in an unconventional way.
Set after a wedding party, Post Party begins as all the characters are waking up with hangovers and regrets. Right from the start, the viewer is introduced to character conflicts as we learn more and more about the strange relationships at play. Most of these conflicts are conveyed through the performances of each actor. Two actors, in particular, do a great job of getting their characters down to small details— Jon Bass and Scarlett Bermingham. Both actors play up the personality traits of their characters enough to sell their performance but never overcompensate. Particularly, Bass makes for a fun, overly genuine presence on screen in his performance. Watching him stumble over a morning after with a bridesmaid creates a sense of both second-hand embarrassment and amusement in the viewer. Bermingham is an interesting one to watch, her interactions with other actors tinged with a sense of caustic caution, and every scene she’s in feels just a hair away from uncomfortable. It’s a thin line to walk but she does it so very well.
The other thing that really assists Post Party’s watchability is the setting. Filmed in a large house, the camera follows each character around the sprawling walls and rooms, inside and outside, like a flight pattern. Decorated by garbage and sleeping bodies, the house has its own energy, its own sense of character. There’s a real sharpness to how the house functions as a stage for the friendships demonstrated by the characters as well as the fissures starting in each relationship on screen. Its calm blue and white background serve well as a background that is unnoticeable yet looms large in each scene. Everyone is doing something in the house, whose ownership is up for debate.
There’s a great deal of kinetic energy running through each room as characters bounce off each other. This is what makes the multitude of characters easy to watch. Where other films with a large cast might stretch themselves too thin, Post Party does a fine job of making sure each character is given enough time to really assert themselves in the narrative. While the story of the film is muddled into scraps of dialogue and hints in body language, it still remains a consistent part of every reaction characters have with each other. There’s very little that goes past without being given a reaction. We’re subject to many different pasts, different futures, all contained within a small house and a big group of people.
Post Party serves as both a humorous romp and a quiet, interesting piece of cinema. It doesn’t stray too far into slapstick, although it has its moments, but doesn’t navel gaze either. The characters are sharp and witty, connecting with each other the way people who have known each other for a long time often do. A group of friends will always have history and this is perhaps the central meaning of the film— past and the present combined. While the dalliances of the past still haunt them, these characters are now awake for a new day and, slowly, are becoming ready to face it.
Post Party was released in 2016 and was directed by Jeff Chan and Andrew Rhymer. It runs at 10 minutes long.