Charlie and Hannah's Grand Night Out Poster
Two girls. A Friday night. And magical candy that makes body parts talk and through which a trip to another galaxy becomes the easiest thing in the world.


Bert Scholiers

This playful film, CHARLIE AND HANNAH’S GRAND NIGHT OUT follows 2 girls,  Charlie (Evelien Bosmans) and Hannah (Daphne Wellens) as they step out in the night scene of Antwerp.

The film is shot mostly in black and white (but with bouts of colour later on), giving it a trippy look.  It begins with Hannah arriving in the late of a Friday night to meet with her friend, Charlie.  She apologizes for being late as she says she was urgently doing irrelevant things like eating a kiwi.  Then she says she dropped a pair of scissors on her toe.  It is ok replies Charlie and the two carry on, playfully, engaging in irrelevant conversation that appears cute at the start but leads to boring and even monotonous quickly.  They arrive at their party after purchasing cheap liquor at 5 euros as they figure that that is what their friends are worth.  ‘Is this film worth 5 euros?’ comes the immediate question to my mind.  At the party Hannah meets with Fons (Patrick Vervueren) and indulge in more irrelevant chi-chat.

Director Scoliers spans equal screen time on each of the heroines.  Though Charlie appears on the outside less fickle than Hannah, both are indistinguishable.

Some parts of the film defy logic. When the magic candy (code name they use for drugs) they consume take effect, Hannah’s boobs talk.  They talk to each other.  But why is Fons who had not taken any hear the boobs?  Another segment has Charlie on a rack in an old horror movie.  She then escapes by taking another candy and turning herself into a block of flats, when she can see the whole city.  “Oh, there’s Hannah,” she remarks.

On the other hand, Charlie shares a cigarette with Catherine the Great.  Before long, Charlie is out spending the rest of the night with Fons, Hannah’s friend.  It is clear the Fons is interested in Charlie.  Hannah does not care that Fons has ditched her (both of them have had sex before).

The film spends a lot of time on the ex’s of both women.  Not that they are that interesting, but the girls bitch about their ex’s non-stop.  Do their new male friends (or the audience) really care?

To the film’s credit, the visuals, especially when the girls get high are visually ‘cute’, colourful (favourite colours appear to be red, blue and purple) and made trippy especially when combined with a bit of animation.

As a result of their drug trip, the girls get to evaluate a little on their lives, though one can doubt if they will really change their lives at all.  The girls are too immature and indecisive for that matter.  One scene has plates hanging on the wall of women being fucked – really offensive to women.  Women are also treated as slags in the film.

There is nothing really grand about Charlie and Hannah’s Friday night out and there is nothing grand about this film either.  Everything fizzles out quickly.  Playful does not necessarily fun and this film proves it.