Death to 2020 Releases on Netflix

Katie Keller, Staff

2020 has been less than pleasant for most people.

This remarkable year was the basis for the Netflix original mockumentary, Death to 2020.

The film features an all-star cast made up of Samuel L. Jackson, Hugh Grant, Lisa Kudrow, Kumail Nanjiani, Tracey Ullman, Samson Kayo, Leslie Jones, Diane Morgan, Cristin Milioti and Joe Keery.

As the title would suggest, the film was basically satirizing 2020. It covered every major event that happened from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, from Australia’s wildfires to the 2020 Presidential Election to the novel coronavirus. “Experts” such as a behavioral psychologist (Jones), a history professor (Grant) and a non-official conservative spokesperson (Kudrow) gave their commentary on these events. 

This movie had me laughing so hard, I could barely breathe for the most part. For one, my dream of Samuel L. Jackson narrating 2020 came true. That alone was a big step in the right direction for Netflix and I applaud them for that.

Each cast member portrayed their stereotype well. Jackson provided the “reporter’s insight,” Milioti was the Karen straight out of TikTok, Keery was the perfect millennial and Ullman had all the grace of Queen Elizabeth II while mocking her at the same time. 

The movie also did well at keeping certain biases out of the final product. While there were certain pushes for political angles and such, it was done in a satirical way, which lightened the seriousness of the political issues included. I would have liked to see a bit more seriousness when it comes to discussing politics as it’s something that has a lot of gray areas, despite people trying to paint it as one thing or another.

I also wish that the film covered a more diverse set of topics. 2020 had three major news stories: the novel coronavirus, the Black Lives Matter movement and the Presidential Election. While all of these are big topics that should rightfully be covered, they also all spark an incredible amount of controversy. Even though the film is called Death to 2020 and centers around the hot mess that 2020 turned out to be, something positive to add depth to all the negativity would have made the film feel more well-rounded.

I found some aspects of the mockumentary to be a bit too cliche or too lighthearted. Kudrow’s character as the unofficial conservative spokesperson just seemed to mock real politicians. While I found it hilarious and in line with my personal view of politicians, on the flip side, this could be taken in completely the wrong way, even though it was supposed to be comical. I found this in many other characters as well. Milioti’s character of the typical Karen could be seen as an offensive imitation by actual Karens. 

Unless you’re Jeff Bezos or somebody else extremely wealthy, 2020 has probably been the worst year ever. This film made that abundantly clear. I have to caution some viewers; any movie with Samuel L. Jackson is guaranteed to have strong language, alcohol and smoking are depicted and some scenes from events that occurred in 2020 are violent. However, if you want a good laugh from 2020, then I definitely recommend this film.