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Had potential but generally this is an average and disappointing film
Jimmy lives in a Newcastle council flat with his parents and his grandfather. He dreams of one day being able to become an angel and believes his application is being assessed by the angel Gabriel himself. His attempts at making the grade don't seem to be going that well and Gabriel seems to have reservations about his qualifications. However, when his father is diagnosed with cancer, Jimmy realises he must speed up his training so that he can reach the level where he is not only an angel but can also perform a miracle to cure his father before it is too late.
Where this film could have been an interesting character piece that is emotional and engaging, this film instead was mis-sold as a Billy Connelly comedy that covers up for the fact that it is a fairly mediocre British film that has ideas running loose around it but never really hangs together in a convincing fashion. It is a bit of a shame but essentially that is what this film is a near miss at best. The story starts out uncertainly, with a mix of fantasy and reality (?) that didn't work well together before coming down to ground with cancer diagnosed in Jimmy's father. At this point it became more interesting because it became more about Jimmy than Jimmy's fantasy. However even at this stage it didn't seem to know what to do with itself and it turned a story that should have been emotionally devastating into one that was surprisingly cold and distant. The "angel" stuff wasn't as interesting a look into Jimmy's head as it should have been, while the real world aspect wasn't handled that well and only churned out the sort of material I expected rather than anything worth stopping with it for. It is a shame because it does have its moments but generally it doesn't gel as well as it should and certainly didn't touch me like I knew it should have done.
The cast aren't much help. Landless is natural and convincing despite having an annoying accent (personal issue, I accept) but the material lets him down and he is pretty much alone in carrying the film. Glen is good as a "p*ssed off dad" but this lack of range doesn't help the film at all and prevented me caring about him and his family. Rowell was similarly too simplistic, while Bradley came straight out of the cliché handbook as the kindly, wise grandfather. Connelly adds his name but not much else if anything he distracts from the main story with what should have been a character that was much more in the background.
Overall an average film that has its moments but generally fails to come together to fulfil the potential that the story had. Landless is quite good but he is let down l=by the material just like the rest of the cast, who seem unable to do anything more than the basics with their parts. Worth missing just because it doesn't really do anything that well.
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