Lifelong platonic friends Zack and Miri look to solve their respective cash-flow problems by making an adult film together. As the cameras roll, however, the duo begin to sense that they may have more feelings for each other than they previously thought.
Originally from the Midlands, Jimmy is currently living in Glasgow eking out a living as a hapless petty crook. One day, he sees his old family and friends - including his older foster sister Carol, her boyfriend/his old buddy Charlie, Jimmy's ex-wife and Carol's best friend Shirley, and Jimmy's pre-teen daughter Marlene - on a television talk show, they baring their souls to a national audience. He has not seen any of them in years. Of note on the show, Shirley rejects the marriage proposal of her slightly awkward live-in boyfriend Dek. Jimmy sees her answer to Dek as a reason to head back to the Midlands to reunite with his past, especially with Shirley and Marlene. Dek, already humiliated, is less than thrilled to see Jimmy back in their lives. In the ensuing duel between Jimmy and Dek for Shirley and Marlene's affections, others get caught up in the crossfire. Meanwhile, three of Jimmy's equally hapless crook friends from Glasgow come looking for him, Jimmy who left them high and ... Written by
When Dek (Rhys Ifans) finds out that Jimmy (Robert Carlyle), is back in town, he proclaims to Carol: "He's only your foster brother! He could have Hannibal Lecter's DNA for all we know! Rhys Ifans went on to portray Grutas, Hannibal Lecter's nemesis, in Hannibal Rising (2007). See more »
Once Upon a Time in the Midlands is a British film starring Shirley Henderson, Rhys Ifans, and Robert Carlyle, and was directed by Shane Meadows. It is a Romance-Comedy-Drama that hit U.S. theaters in art-houses. It adopts the spaghetti western title "Once upon a time in.." that Sergio Leone used in such works as Once Upon a Time in America and Once Upon a Time in the West. However, about as far as this movie goes in its intriguing title is using the occasional Western music. I think Meadows choice to not go all out in his "tinned adaptation" is wise, because it makes one think about why it was called that. Even so, this movie doesn't really have much going for it besides its great title. It's another love triangle, Carlyle and Ifans are rivals for the love of Shirely Henderson. Ifans character is fascinating with his apparent cowardice and serious comical lovability. This is an enjoyable movie, more slow than suspenseful, just more like sweet, with predictability but lovability.
My grade: 6/10
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