Maxine Peake dominates the screen as producer and star of this painful, angry film written by Tony Pitts and directed by Adrian Shergold, about a fictional female club comedian fighting her way to the top, or at least the middle, in 1970s Britain.
Maybe without Peake this would have looked merely strident or chaotic; and to be frank, even with Peake, it does flirt with some age-old cliches. Comedians are traditionally given centre stage in a drama on condition that they reveal themselves to be unhappy or empty inside. But Peake gives it a fierce, blazing energy and holds everything together through the magnetic force of her performance. Jim Moir, John Bishop, Kevin Eldon and Diane Morgan provide cameos (perhaps to underline the project’s comedy credentials) and the excellent