Think about this: you’ve simply been invited to the nation to have a good time your birthday. Your whole pals from faculty will likely be there and also you haven’t seen them shortly—however once you arrive, everyone seems to be performing just a little completely different than the way you remembered. The vibes are so off that you just begin to second-guess whether or not this posh college crew even likes you in any respect, or if, the truth is, they simply may…hate you?
That’s the setup for All My Mates Hate Me, a movie directed by Andrew Gaynord and co-written by Tom Palmer and Tom Stourton, with the latter starring in the primary position of Pete, the poor bloke who travels to a college mate’s mansion within the English countryside to see his pals for the primary time in years and have a good time his personal birthday.
It’s a cringe comedy-horror that ratchets up the anxiousness felt by Pete as he repeatedly runs into awkward situations, beginning with the gang’s invitation of a rakish stranger into Pete’s birthday celebration, and appears to endure from essentially the most horrible foot-in-mouth syndrome one would by no means hope to expertise. With references to horror movies by Michael Haneke and Jordan Peele, the thought for the script began germinating when Stourton attended a marriage between “two outdated uni mates.” He hadn’t seen them for some time and was stunned they invited him to witness their nuptials, and grew more and more paranoid throughout the ceremony that his invite was despatched as a joke. He nervous that “throughout the speeches, on the finish of the marriage, the groom was going to say, ‘Oh, and guess what, Tom Stourton thought that we truly meant to ask him. Isn’t that humorous?’ That’s not what occurred and I really feel responsible about how kind of self-absorbed I used to be being,” he says.
Betrayed by his personal mind, Stourton started to bounce concepts off of Palmer about “a pleasant surroundings that feels hostile” riffing till that they had one thing that hinged upon the theme of “the extent to which your individual one thing in your individual head might attain the stakes of a horror movie.”
All My Mates Hate Me is their first characteristic movie collectively, however Palmer and Stourton have been greatest buds ever since they met at boarding faculty and shared a comedy icon: Sacha Baron Cohen as Ali G, the performer’s satirical “chav” character who spoofs those that culturally applicable hip-hop and British Jamaican tradition. “I believe it was only a actually lame situation the place two 13-year-old boys have been attempting to out-quote one another on a comedy,” Stourton remembers. After they went to college, they shaped a duo and began performing comedy gigs in pubs and known as themselves Completely Tom, satirizing the luxury world from which they got here. “In our final 12 months we wrote a extremely foolish mockumentary that we shot ourselves on a really novice digicam,” Palmer tells me. Impressed by Stourton’s try to turn into a DJ, the movie “was a few unhappy, lonely, privileged pupil of this college who was attempting to placed on an enormous techno-night and it was all an entire catastrophe.”
Palmer and Stourton’s movie is now taking part in in theaters and will likely be on demand beginning March 25, nevertheless it first debuted at Tribeca Movie Pageant in 2020 to constructive critiques, with one critic even telling Stourton that All My Mates Hate Me reminded him of one thing that will’ve been created by “an evil Richard Curtis.” It obtained fun out of the 2 on the time, however partially as a result of that was, in a manner, their intention with the movie. All My Mates Hate Me touches on some near-universally relatable experiences—assembly up with outdated pals, getting into your thirties, reassessing your values and confronting your privileges, questioning if everybody hates you as a result of they didn’t textual content you again in time or responded cryptically—with a really English forged in a really English context.
“We needed this concept that it’s like all the buildings and the gadgets of one thing fairly frothy and pleasant and British, however truly, what if this was truly performed out as a horror? What if this was performed out for actual and the comedy wasn’t so humorous?,” Palmer explains. For Stourton, he relished in “ alternative to kind of subvert some English stereotyping” together with his position as Pete. “I believe the Richard Curtis stereotype is the bumbling, charming Englishman who manages to come back up roses ultimately. And it was enjoyable to only be like, no, these are some barely despicable English folks, or barely extra flawed,” he says.
All My Mates Hate Me slowly builds up the panic and dread till it’s virtually utterly insufferable, touchdown with a much-deserved cathartic second on the finish. When Palmer and Stourton reunite once more for an additional movie, they hope to offer a marriage the identical therapy as Pete’s fateful birthday celebration—and an “anti-wedding” film for the social anxiousness period is perhaps precisely what we want.