Photo: SXSW
Before We Vanish by Jaime Grijalba Gomez Film

The Day Shall Come | Christopher Morris

September 24, 2019

The Day Shall Come, Christopher Morris’s follow up to his debut (and sleeper hit) Four Lions, treads similar ground as its predecessor — though it moves the action to North American soil, satirizing the FBI’s day-to-day work against security threats. It does this by depicting a foul-mouthed team of agents commanded by Kendra Glack (Anna Kendrick), an FBI operative willing to use empty nuclear weapon canisters to frame possible terrorist threats. But the film’s protagonist is a young black preacher named Moses (played brilliantly by Marchánt Davis), the leader of a religious cult that praises Jesus, Mohammed, and Black Santa, among other figures, and who prophesies of an eventual race war that will lead to their triumph on Earth.

Moses’s organization becomes the focus of Kendra’s team, who attempt to lure them into committing a federal crime. Morris swiftly develops this basic scenario in a series of sequences that presents the absolute madness and ridiculousness of all involved — from the delusional preacher who believes can invoke dinosaurs by sounding a horn, to the FBI team willing to create a character who delivers an ‘Al Qaeda Magazine’ to make them believe that he’s the real deal. Its 87-minute runtime helps the film avoid overstaying its welcome as it carefully pinpoints the racial biases behind organizations like the FBI. A film built on humor, The Day Shall Come nonetheless builds to a gut-punch ending, which abruptly halts the laughs, and drops the viewer into the grim reality of the present-day United States.

Published as part of September 2019’s Before We Vanish.