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The Crime Comedy Hidden Gem You Can Find On Hulu

Like Ricky Gervais, "South Park," and plenty of other big names in comedy, the career of British actor and director Chris Morris is largely defined by a commitment to pushing boundaries. If Morris' name is attached to a project in some capacity, there's a significant chance that the project will warrant a content warning, so to speak. That said, successful or not, Morris' work is generally intended to satirize its subjects rather than merely shock.

In sitcom "Nathan Barley," for example (co-created by Morris and "Black Mirror" showrunner Charlie Brooker), its titular character solicits a sex worker he at one point believes to be underage. Barley's friends then commend him for this when they too believe the woman to be underage. The scene attempts to justify itself, however, due to the fact that "Nathan Barley" is intended to parody a certain kind of vapid socialite, intentionally drawing the scorn from its audience in order to criticize its central character's real-world parallels.

Morris also directed "Four Lions," an underrated comedy about aspiring Muslim terrorists. The protagonist of "Four Lions," Omar (Riz Ahmed), is played sympathetically rather than as an outright villain. The film, then, points a finger not entirely at the group of terrorists central to its story but the larger societal conditions that drive them to violence.

Despite a relatively long and critically acclaimed career — Morris co-created and starred in influential satire "The Day Today" (via The Guardian) back in 1994 — Morris is relatively unknown in the United States. As a result, the most recent film for which he served as director has remained something of a hidden gem among comedy movie audiences since its release in 2019.

The Day Shall Come satirizes US government procedure

"The Day Shall Come" is the feature film debut of its lead actor Marchánt Davis as a preacher named Moses Al Shabaz. Moses leads a quasi-religious group in Miami called Star of Six Community Farm and Mission, which boasts a membership of four adherents in total. While Moses' religious doctrine is unconventional, he's a noted pacifist and dedicated family man. When FBI Agent Kendra Glack (Anna Kendrick) attempts to frame Moses as a terrorist in order to advance her career, her plot is presented to audiences as particularly absurd given Moses' lack of violent or even revolutionary tendencies.

On Rotten Tomatoes, "The Day Shall Come" holds a 64% critical score and 52% audience score. Reviewer Ed Potton wrote in The Times that while "The Day Shall Come" is "witty and surreal... savagely satirical, and often chilling," it's "not really rolling-in-the-aisles material." He ultimately awarded the film four out of a possible five stars. Mark Kermode wrote for The Guardian in a 3/5 review that "the powerful thread of pathos that runs through the drama" drives its comedic moments.

Meanwhile, one casual viewer wrote on Rotten Tomatoes that "They Day Shall Come" is "sharp, biting satire on the absolute mess that American 'justice' can be." User Jake C described the film as "a bitter and brutal travesty of how our (in effect criminal) criminal justice system effectively terrorizes those maligned souls it dubs terrorists, a farce of justice that far too often ends in real tragedy."

The poignant, sad, satire of the U.S. government in "The Day Shall Come" is currently available to stream on Hulu.