Sunday, 22 July 2012

I Know You Know

This is a thoroughly gripping film. It is not all uplifting, but it is gripping. Set in a bleak and dreary industrial South Wales landscape in the late 1980's, Robert Carlyle and Arron Fuller give compelling character performances as father and son Charlie and Jaimie. It is a film that is full of warmth.

This is the kind of film that if I were to make any meaningful comment, I would immediately give the plot away and that would be a pity as the plot is also something that is compelling and highly original. So this will be short review. I will say that the film is directed by Justin Kerrigan and is autobiographical - it embodies a lived reality and grittiness.

I said the film is not uplifting - there is no happy ending. However, I would imagine that after the opening 10 minutes or so, few would be able to guess where this story ends up. The acting is tight and the script is very well written and creatively delivered by Carlyle and Fuller.

I'm not surprised that this film only rates 5.8 on IMDB and 64% on rotten tomatoes. So much of the film is rooted in the culture of South Wales and 1980's Thatcherite Britain with the contrasting iconic cars of a gleaming Jenson Interceptor and beat up Ford Capri. I imagine that its cultural reference points may not translate too readily across the pond - it would have been a very different film had it been set in The Bronx or Chicago.

If you enjoy working with a movie you are watching and not always seeking a happy ending, then this could be one for you. Put it on your Love Film list and be prepared for a surprise.

I'll give it 7/10.

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