Starring Craig Roberts, Yasmin Page, Sally Hawkins, Noah Taylor, Paddy Considine. (15)


A deadpan comedy set in Swansea, 1986, where nerdy schoolboy Oliver Tate (Roberts) is battling to sort out a couple of things in his life: first he wants to lose his virginity before his next birthday, and secondly he has to stop his mother (Hawkins) leaving his depressed father (Taylor) for their recently arrived neighbour, Graham (Considine), a has-been TV star turned New Age spiritualist who is also his mother’s dance teacher.

The first objective may become a reality after he starts going out with classmate Jordana (Paige), but love doesn’t always run entirely smoothly for the self-conscious and selfish Oliver. Meanwhile, the latter project is even more complex, especially when he spies his mum getting into the back of Graham’s van on New Year’s Eve.

An unusual, engaging and funny coming-of-age tale that perfectly depicts teen anxiety, angst and discomfort, this boasts an endearing and assured performance from Craig Roberts as the boy with a complex imagination, and a convincing one from Paige as his feisty yet vulnerable girlfriend. Written and directed by actor-turned-director Richard Ayoade (from TV’s The IT Crowd) and loosely adapted from Joe Dunthorne’s novel, this quirky movie may be destined to be a cult hit, but deserves to be a huge smash. A must see.

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