Just caught up with ‘controversial’ Kidulthood… and for me it’s basically an updated version of classic 70s / 80s kid’s television school drama Grange Hill with themes of bullying, drug taking, shop-lifting, teenage promiscuity, pregnancy and the rest. And all the better for it and obviously now you can photo the victim after you’ve mashed them (some nicely gratuitous violence here) plus I can’t remember any of the Hill lot going as far as swapping sexual favours for drugs.
There’s a decent script by Noel Clark – best know for playing Mickey in the recent Dr Who – who also puts in a fantastic performance as the small time bully and villain Sam. You’ll forget Mickey in about five minutes. Jamie Winston, daughter of Ray, also shines as a slag with a heart of gold.
The soundtrack is also great, featuring the best of British ‘Grime’ – whatever that is, some sort of beat combo I think. On the DVD extras the Music Supervisor turns out to a genial middle-aged middle-class white bloke when I had been expected some extreme urban type… (though he does wear a baseball cap.)
I had a free-frame nerd moment when I spotted a book I actually own in the draw of Sam’s bedside cabinet – Diamond Geezers by Greg Williams* – an enjoyable Lock Stock-ish gangster romp that came out a few years ago. Suppose to be completely nerdish I should check out the other book next seen to it – The Lack Brothers by Malcolm MacKay
Despite having a great look due to the work of director Menhaj Huda and especially cinematographer Brian Tufano (who has worked on films as diverse as Billy Elliot to Quadrophenia) it’s a pity the film peters out into peachiness by the end and a few plot threads aren’t really resolved property. Tucker, Zammo and all the rest, despite not having the ultra-sex, ultra-violence and ulta-sweary-half-unintelligible slang of Kidulthood, still rule.
*I’ve since re-read Diamond Geezers since I first wrote this review and unfortunately it’s not half as good as I remembered it.