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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
Brilliantly observed comic scenes of working class domestic life, reminiscent of Caroline Aherne's superb 'Royle Family' sitcom, provide the backdrop for an engaging comedy-drama. All the main actors turn in typically excellent, albeit unsurprising performances: Robert Carlyle does a variation on his Scottish psycho-crim (see 'Trainspotting'), Ricky Tomlinson plays another genial but feckless Scouser (see 'The Royle Family') and Kathy Burke does her no-nonsense council-house Cockney routine (see Kathy Burke). By far the best of the ensemble is Rhys Ifans as Dek. Dek is the most rounded of the comic characters, all of whom are neatly sketched out, not just by dialogue, but by carefully chosen background details. Look out for the hub caps and model car collection in Dek's house and the cases of 'Pot Noodle' in Charlie's loo (which also serves as his office). Assured direction, a well-paced script and some very funny jokes make for a satisfying if somewhat predictable watch.
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