5 items from 2014
From fizzy drink sizes to video nasties to employment law, we look at the films that had an impact on legislation as well as culture...
Some films appear in the cinema, entertain their audience, make their money, and then dutifully shuffle off into the mists of history, only to be wheeled out now and again on TV. But occasionally, one comes along that has a lasting impact, and every so often, a movie has at least some influence on an eventual change in the law.
Here, we're going to look at a few examples of that, as we examine a selection of films that have had an impact more lasting than how much they made at the box office...
★★★★☆The young male inmate rallying against the system is hardly untapped territory in film, but with Starred Up (2013) writer Jonathan Asser and director David Mackenzie have succeeded in putting a fresh spin on that schema, bolstered further by a powerhouse performance from Skins graduate Jack O'Connell. It's no surprise that the likes of Tom Hardy (Bronson) and Ray Winstone (Scum) have used the sub-genre in the past as means of launching their big screen careers. It's the kind of milieu which seems primed to showcase an actor's abilities and O'Connell more than rises to the challenge here. For the first ten minutes our lead doesn't even utter a word, yet somehow completely commands the screen.
- CineVue UK
Jack O'Connell gives an electrifying performance as a violent teenager forced to confront parental authority in prison
When inspirational director Alan Clarke cooked up an authentic television portrait of incarcerated British youth in the late 1970s, the resultant film was so alarming that it was promptly banned by the BBC. Clarke subsequently remade Scum for the cinema, and both the small- and big-screen versions of his most notorious work have since cast long shadows over their respective mediums. Plaudits, then, to David Mackenzie for fashioning a tough but empathetic (if uneven) prison drama which marks out its own territory in an arena in which Clarke's epochal work is still the daddy, even now.
Shot (but not set) in Northern Ireland on a tight schedule and even tighter budget, this eye-catching and frequently pulse-pounding drama finds high-risk young offender Eric (Jack O'Connell) being moved up to an adult prison where he »
- Mark Kermode
Mobsters, mafioso, hoodlums, gang-bangers, capos, love, betrayal, drugs, murder and money; it is all here. The very fact that organised crime has its own genre is a testament to how loved Gangster films are.
The fascination with a world that is beyond comprehension for most that watch, is something that has always been apparent in the cinematic world and thankfully it has always been brimming with incredible films to compliment the obsession.
Here, compiled for your humble discretion (with Huge spoilers), is an attempted order of the iconic moments from the very best the movie world has to offer when it comes to Gangster movies…
20. Yes, Yes, Yes! – Sexy Beast (2000)
Brutal Gangster boss Teddy Bass (McShane) sends Don Logan (Ben Kingsley) to persuade retired Gal Dove (Ray Winstone) into one last job, and hilarity ensues! In all seriousness, this film is a joy to watch, with »
- Shaun Lappin
A visceral, swaggering performance in the prison drama is set to help propel the former Skins star to stardom. He reveals why 2014 is lining up to be his big year – and why he's ready for it
Jack O'Connell is not pissing about. These are his words. He has just put in the performance of his career in prison drama Starred Up, he's shooting Angelina Jolie's Unbroken – an account of the life of Olympic runner and second-world-war hero Louis Zamperini – in which he again takes the lead, and he's about to tackle a blockbuster with Zack Snyder in 300: Rise of an Empire. He has been acting for 10 years. He's done with partying – he's ready to justify himself. He's intense and focused, older and wiser than the kid who came up through the ranks of the E4 teen drama Skins. He's 23 years old.
I meet O'Connell at the tail end »
- Henry Barnes
5 items from 2014
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