New Years Eve – full of highs, lows, peaking to soon and ultimately same year, same shit disappointment. Better or worse with family? You decide.

Happy New Year Colin Burstead attempts to encompass all of this whilst indulging you with motion sickness inducing cinematography in Ben Wheatley’s latest offering. Or at least that’s how I felt about half an hour in. But in the comfort of your own home tuned into BBC2 (or Iplayer) with a few G&Ts on the go I’m sure you’ll be fine.

Colin (Neil Maskell) hires out a lavish country manor for his family for the New Year. They’re barely through the door when things literally get off on the wrong foot as his mother sprains her ankle on the way in and things go slowly downhill from there. Centered around the ominous arrival of Colin’s brother David (Sam Riley) who everyone seems to have a problem with as the story unravels for us to find out why (which as it happens isn’t that interesting anyway.)

But what is interesting is the clever script which is well cast. A real pen portrait of modern family conflict and emotional binding with believable characters and some touching moments of comic relief. You can really feel the conflict and reasoning of each individual character which is fairly unique for a feature like this.

Truly fabulous acting aids the story along featuring the talents of Joe Cole, Asim Chaudry and Charles Dance (among many others) each of whom really manage to capture the ‘Abigail’s Party’ style vibe Wheatley creates. I’m not entirely sure I’d watch it again but it’s on Iplayer so certainly worth a view if you’re at a loose end nursing your own shame (or lack of ) on New Years Day.


Happy New Year, Colin Burstead airs 10:30pm BBC 2, 30/12/18