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|Index||13 reviews in total|
I recently saw this movie and thought it was charming and funny. The
comedy was subtle in places, laugh-out-loud in others, but always
I would disagree with the notion that some of the characters are superfluous or under- developed... I thought they were subtle, well-played and a great collection of people. I didn't find it hard to imagine them digging away somewhere on an allotment!
I do agree with the comment about Benedict Wong, this was a great performance, I also really liked Eddie Marsan and Philip Jackson's characters.
As for the name, I rather like "Grow Your Own" as a title!
Wow! A genuinely funny and moving film that lingered in my head for days. Probably the most unsexy list of ingredients to make a movie from - gardening, immigration, telephone masts - but it links all these plots with an amazing cast of characters who it is impossible not to care for. It's a bit like Little Miss Sunshine - why should a road movie about a dysfunctional family on their way to a beauty pageant work? - because you care about every single one of them and the same thing happens here. Rather than laying the politics of immigration on with a trowel the writing and directing insinuate it throughout the stories. A great piece of British Indie Cinema - It left me with that feeling you get after an impromptu warm summer evening sitting outside the pub.
I saw a preview of this and absolutely loved it. It was very funny (the scene where the cranky old men test out the ring tones for instance is a classic) and touching. I loved the fact that it had none of the usual faces that you see in Britcoms. I didn't recognise anyone in it apart from Benny Wong - who was amazing in this - and the very funny girl from Hot Fuzz, who was just as funny in this. I love the fact that it keeps about ten different stories rolling along. I also loved all the gardening stuff. It reminded me of The Secret Garden and it gave the whole thing a bit of poetry and beauty that you just don't see in films about working class people normally.
This was a nice Little film, Nice is probably the crucial word because
it did suffer from the British film comedy pitfall of using stock
characters while tying everything up too "nicely" at the end. The Eddie
Marsan / Olivia Coleman romance storyline must have seemed like well
trodden paths through their allotted stories and they pulled off
trademark, lovable loser, performances that I am sure would come across
as heart-warming if we hadn't seen them many times before. And there
were a few other comedy stalwarts playing within similar well ploughed
That said, there was much to commend the film - the characters were familiar but you felt a warmth for all (of whom you were intended to) and the script although a little threadbare in places had some great moments too; the Grumpy old Rebel and the Chinese family were extremely well written and played. The cinematography was much better than some comments have implied too - there is one shot of darkened clouds over the allotments and a couple of other night-time views that were pretty impressive.
Its a story about a set of allotments and the changing ethnic shape of working class society and as such it is well meaning and entertaining .. yes we have seen much of it before .. yes there have been better Brit films and if you want a hard-biting film about the state of British society or the evils of racism in Britain today, there is a lot better out there but....
I sat in a showing (late admittedly) in a major British City, in that Cities main Cinema, on a Saturday night, on only the second night after the films release, i was the ONLY viewer!! I hope that is not an indication of the films fate because it deserves better than that
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I saw Grow Your Own at a test screening and while it's not edgy indie fare, it was properly funny. The audience laughed loud and frequently, it was well crafted and overall I thought the film delivered. It felt to me like one of the better Ealing Comedies, focusing as it does on an insular community of allotment growers being forced to accommodate unexpected change from outsiders, in this case traumatised refugees. The cast included familiar comic types like Olivia Coleman and Omid Djalili (both excellent) and Benedict Wong (Sunshine) is riveting as an emotionally scared asylum seeker with a horrifying story to tell. Some story lines were better than others but where the film worked brilliantly was showing how loneliness, trauma and thoughtless behaviour are balanced by kind words and community spirit without resorting to sentimentalism or unrealistic plot twists. Really entertaining.
Sometimes you just know after 5 minutes of watching a film whether it's going to be good or not. I bought it on the strength of John Henshaw being in it, he seems to do no wrong. In truth if i gave this film a 10 star rating it would not do enough justice for it. Ridiculously fabulous film that relies on story, acting, cranked up with a fair amount of emotional turmoil. Please see this film, it's a very undervalued classic. Im hyper critical of films, but this is perfection. When it comes to action/horror I generally think US films cannot be beaten, when it comes to a drama, i think its one area the Brits are way out ahead, there is a realism about this film that is quite unnerving. The humour very subtle and well placed. It's given me such a good feeling after watching it.
I didn't expect a movie about asylum seekers and allotments to be one
of my favourite movies. But it's British quirkyness is absolutely
charming. Where else in the world do they have allotments? but more
importantly, I think it perfectly captures the great British love-hate
of foreigners. We like them but hate them at the same time. In this
movie we have the typical mistrust yet somehow that's broken down.
Partly it's through food - yes we do love our takeaways here in the UK
don't we? and partly through skills (yes we are short of a few) and
partly through romance.
It's a movie that I think is really topical and all UKIP supporters should see!
I watched the DVD of this, basically because that's how i watch movies. I wondered at the start if I had made a mistake and was going to rue the decision to buy it, but no, things livened up a bit, the comedy was subtle and the acting was stock UK standard - sometimes too good for its own good, many viewers missing the sublety. I think today we are so saturated with 'blockbuster' and 'drama' that when we see characters who seem to be not acting, we just think that they're doing badly. I've done that myself. However, although I think that Philip Jackson, who is one of my favourites, was a predictable casting, the situation was ultimately sorted in the typical British no-fuss method of side-stepping the unpleasantness and dealing to him. I liked it, no apologies for that. I'll probably watch it again.
Excellent Movie, a quiet cinematic piece where the right balance between the loveliness and the horrors of human life is found. Great Job! All actors did a good job in keeping their characters ell grounded. Not being English myself but European and more of a world citizen I can really appreciate the picture portrait by each and every actor and how wonderful the story is without beginning or end. In the end everything is as it was: a growing community. No judgement given. I really enjoyed that there was no violence or vile words. And this is the England and people we have found here and in other European countries. The emotions of being refugees or immigrant or different is just like it has been portrait here. Not important enough to make it into a political debate. Let just stay human and go on and grow together!
While it's not exactly a film that is going to set the world on fire
with it's originality, "Grow Your Own" is a perfectly OK drama/comedy.
(Note, it is a drama/comedy rather than a comedy/drama. There is a
The trailer would have you believe that "Grow Your Own" is a film concerned with British eccentrics, stuck in their ways, perturbed by the influence of foreigners on the little piece of England they call the Allotment. Er... Actually that is exactly what it is about (clichés ahoy!), but it is the sometimes very tragic human stories behind the clichés that make "Grow Your Own" interesting enough.
The cast is made up of the same faces that are always turning up in British films. (Philip Jackson, Eddie Marsan, John Henshaw, Olivia Colman, Omid Djalili, et al.) All of them perfectly, and probably obviously, cast.
Not world breaking, but a perfectly amiable film for a quiet afternoon at the cinema. Yes, it is another, I'm assuming, lottery funded British movie of no interest to anybody outside of the British Isles, but give it a go. You might like it.
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