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Daniel’s Gotta Die – Toronto After Dark review

What happens when you take a similar concept of Ready or Not, Knives Out, and cast Bob Saget and Iggy Pop? Well you get Jeremy LaLonde’s newest feature, Daniel’s Gotta Die. The film is exactly as the title decides, Daniel has to die after his family learns that he gets all of their dads money and they all want a piece of the inheritance, the issue is Daniel wants to reconnect with his estranged to an extent family and refuses to see the bad, until its either too late or he has no other choice.

The film focuses on the Powell family consisting of Mia (Mary Lynn Rajskub), Jessica (Carly Chaikin), Victor (Jason Jones), and of course Daniel (Joel David Moore). When the patriarchy of the family, Edward (Iggy Pop) passes away, it is up to Lawrence (Bob Saget in his final role) to inform the Powell’s that their father has left them crumbs while Daniel gets the majority of everything adding up to tens of millions of dollars. Since everyone in the Powell family, except Daniel is rather greedy and terrible people, they all hatch a plan to kill Daniel to take their inheritance, but what they don’t expect is Daniel to be more resilient than he let on. The fight for survival is on in this family drama that is a lot funnier than any of those uncomfortable family dinners we typically find ourselves at.

The true chaos is in the performances in Daniel’s Gotta Die, which everyone involved in helps bring Matthew Dressel’s script to life. Iggy Pop whose got the shortest amount of screen time doesn’t exude anything particularly memorable but his presence is enough to elicit a response from the audience. While Bob Saget is, as he always was, funny and poignant with his performance and brings another level of comedy and hilarity to this family drama while Mary Lynn Rajskub shines bright amongst the spoiled entitled children. Joel David Moore who just wants to see the best of his family he has yet to get to know, excels in his performance and brings a new level of depth between wanting to connect with his family and self preservation. Everyone brings something to the table to entice the audience with Daniel’s Gotta Die and the collective group makes the film a genuine surprise and a hit for audiences looking for an outlandish family dramedy.

Daniel’s Gotta Die features the final performance from legend Bob Saget, with an appearance from musical icon Iggy Pop and boasts an ensemble that delivers on the comedy front. With everyone working together to bring the sheer chaos and madness that always comes with large families to life, there truly is something for everyone to enjoy in the hectic aftermath of a hierarchy passing.

Daniel’s Gotta Die screens 7:00PM, Friday, October 20 at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival! The Toronto Premiere with Director & Select cast and crew in attendance! Tickets are available here:

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Daniel’s Gotta Die – Toronto After Dark review


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About The Author

My earliest movie memory, outside of my home theatre in my basement, was going to the local Video 99 and wanting to rent ET only to be told by the shop owner it was playing down the street in theatres. My love for cinema has been alive for as long as I can honestly remember. I would frequent the cinema minutes down from my house daily. It was a second home. Movies are an escape from the everyday world, a window into the soul, a distant friend. If I’m not watching a movie, I’m probably watching a tv show, if I’m doing neither I’m asleep.

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