The grim context of the film is hardly entertaining, but still it's compulsively gripping.
A 12-year-old girl Chloe (Holly Scourfield) is bored of moving around the UK every now and then in housing estate. So to get away from her alcoholic mother who takes her for granted, her cruel brother and her mum's clingy boyfriend she leaves town with a fellow neighbour Lee (Jody Latham). Where they both head to Hastings where his mother lives and to get away from their uneventful lives.
It's a powerfully engaging, incredibly sincere and emotionally rich film, but it has a real depressing and sombre tone to it. It's basically a character study on children looking for a better life. Where young kids are acting far older then they should, therefore they can't seem to understand what they are feeling or how to express it. The kids grow up too quick and lose their innocence and that comes because of family problems in this film. Where crime, alcohol, drugs and sex becomes part of their life, though they might be depressed these problems seem to enhance it then really make it disappear.
There is no real plot in this one idea film, but still it's rather unpredictable story telling and an excellent screenplay. The story is a heart felt relationship between the kids and their moody lives and it really stirs up the feelings and raw emotions. Though, I do wonder where her brother vanished to after 10-mintues into the film? The script is filled with dense and colourful dialogue. That really comes across as quite natural, with some witty and sharp conservations. Though, at times it's quite shocking to comprehend what you're hearing.
The direction is very good in capturing the contrast with the superb backdrop. The lush look of the film comes across as very cold and gloomy, in which might alienate some viewers. There are some awkward and hard-hitting sequences that have a huge impact and it's incredibly well paced, as it just sucks you right in to the situation at hand. The soundtrack is at times rather haunting, but it's rather effective in the overall mood of the film. There's stunning location photography that captures the towns beautifully and peers right into these people's lives. With its fade away shots and some intrusive zooms, but because of the low budget it's shot very much like a documentary.
Rather solid and absorbing performances are given from the unknown cast. The chemistry is quite brilliant between the actors and especially between the two young girls.
This is no happy-ever-after film, though the ending was more upbeat then I thought it would be. Overall, it's a bleak and disturbing portrayal of the hardships that follow many young people and families in today's society.
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