THE FIRST NIGHT OF MY LIFE
MY FIRST NIGHT
(La Primera Noche de mi Vida)
The First Night of My Life suffers from the same problem that dogged the weaker entries in the collection The Hole, The Wall namely that the story is of little significance to the date of the millennium. There is little of profound sociological weight to the story we have here it is just a comedy about the accidental intersections of various characters as the millennial midnight draws to a close. There is footage from a tv documentary that charts the history of the 20th Century that plays in the background in two or three scenes but that is about as weighty as the film gets in regard to commemorating the end of the century. Indeed, the sole reason for The First Night of My Lifes inclusion as a scence-fiction film in this guide is because it has a date that is set about a year in the future from when it was made without this, it would drop from listing.
Director Luis Miguel Albadelejo has clearly been modelled The First Night of My Life on the frothy, ebullient comedies of countryman Pedro Almodovar whose films make a similar virtue of zany character interactions. However, Albadelejo never pushes First Night to the levels of hysteria or outrageous wildness of Almodovar. Where Almodovars earlier films verge on campy surrealism, The First Night of My Life seems merely amiable. There are occasional moments where Roberto Hernandez, returning a friends stolen truck, is caught between traffic officers arguing whose jurisdiction he is meant to be; or where Emilio Gutierrez Caba gets a ride in his own car but has to pretend it belongs to thug Carlos Fuentes and offers up nonchalant advice Youll find candy in the glove compartment and reaching out for a ringing carphone Itll be for me. In the end though, The First Night of My Life is just a little too mannered to produce more than an occasional laugh.
Luis Miguel Albadelejo (usually credited as simply Miguel Albadelejo) has gone on to direct a number of other comedies, none of any particularly wide profile and none featuring any other genre material.