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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Romper stomper

click to enlarge romperstomper.jpg

(photo © 2007 IFC Films)

This Is England is a film worth checking out if you weren’t able to catch it when Shane Meadows’ skinhead tragedy played a short run at Atlanta’s Plaza Theatre this year. Few films have so brilliantly captured the dark allure of subcultures as this one about a puny kid mesmerized by the possibility of belonging to his local fascist youth gang. The film may very well make my top 10 list of the best films of the year. The DVD release of This Is England is Nov. 13. Star Thomas Turgoose (pictured) is especially captivating, his child's body and adult manner reminiscent of the creepy David Bennent in The Tin Drum.

My capsule review:

A bullied, fatherless 12-year-old kid (Thomas Turgoose) who’s lost his father in the Falklands War joins up first with a nurturing gang of proto-skinheads before falling in with a hardcore group. Shane Meadows’ (an ex-skinhead himself) atmospheric, stylish film captures the comforting sense of family and protection a gang provides in the depressing wasteland of Thatcher’s England. Meadows manages to be compassionate toward his subjects without shying away from fascism’s dark allure among marginalized Brits.

To see a trailer:

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