Photos by Paul Sabuda
In 2051, a charismatic but lonely mechanic invites us into his garage and talks us through the ups and downs of the past 30 years. It didn't go the way that you think.
We made The Last Mechanic during a chaotic time.
Not only was the Covid pandemic still ravaging the UK and the rest of the world during the Spring of 2020, entire industries were struggling to survive, civil discourse felt like a thing of the past, and toilet roll became a household delicacy.
However, it was undeniably a hopeful time too. People came together in support of one another and communities re-emerged in the ways that evoked a post-war effort.
Hope and despair co-existed, and as we started to return to normal you would be forgiven for wanting to switch off and forget about the state of everything else.
Yet it is entirely because we could, at some point, face another Covid or something far, far worse that we knew we needed to make this film.
What will the world even look like in 30 years?
Any futurologist will tell you that projections over the 5 year mark are fundamentally unreliable, so we knew we couldn't make a factually bulletproof film. But nor did we want to make escapism.
We had to look at the fears of today and what the outcomes of those fears might be based on their current trajectory.
The laundry list of problems we still face - the climate crisis, growing wealth inequality, the endless, targeted, misinformation - gave us plenty to work with. And shooting in my hometown of Leicester in the UK gave it a very specific regionality.
We then had to find a way to frame this discussion in an engaging and inviting way that didn't immediately start by preaching at the viewer.
With the talents of our lead actor Eddie Osei we crafted a talkative, drunken, sometimes obscene but always charming, mechanic. He's made plenty of mistakes in his life, but rather than admit to his faults he's doubling down on them. And this where we start to see things unravel...
The Last Mechanic takes inspiration from the findings in The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells, the sociology in Chris Hedges' American Psychosis, the comedy of Charlie Brooker, and the short films Basically and C'est La Vie by Ari Aster.
The film might be a warning for the future, and hopefully it's entertaining one at that, but ultimately it is a future we all want to avoid.
- Jonathan Cross, Writer & Director