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1987, love in time of war. A bus driver George Lennox meets Carla, a Nicaraguan exile living a precarious, profoundly sad life in Glasgow. Her back is scarred, her boyfriend missing, her ... See full summary »
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Liam is a young, restless teen struggling to realize his dream in the gritty and dismal streets of Greenock, where unemployment is rampant and little hope is available to the city's youth. He is waiting for the release of his mother, Jean, from prison where she is completing a prison term for a crime that her boyfriend actually committed. Her boyfriend, Stan, is a crude and obnoxious drug pusher is partnered by Liam's equally rough and foul-mouthed, mean-spirited grandfather. Liam is determined to rescue his mother from both of them, which means creating a safe haven beyond their reach. But first he's got to raise the cash--no small feat for a young man It's not long before Liam and his pals' crazy schemes lead them into all sorts of trouble. Finding himself dangerously out of his depth, Liam knows he should walk away. Only this time, he just can't let go. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
The film gives an alternative and "non-tourist" view over Glasgow area where drugs, alcohol and violence are daily part of life and struggle through this is impossible without outside support. Autumn grayness accentuates the daily gloom and moments of hope are too brief - and always associated with a "catch". Ken Loach is a gifted director and the plot intensity is excellently exploited, but the script itself is too lopsided to me.
As for the actors, Martin Compston as Liam outperforms all the others; he is really great in portraying a soon-to-be 16-years-old "ned" as they say in Scotland. Other characters are too briefly on screen and at times incomprehensible (e.g. Pinball).
Sweet Sixteen could be a strong warning film for teens, but due to hard language it is forbidden to minors in most countries... It is no family film anyway.
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