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On the Wirral in the grim early years of Margaret Thatcher's premiership, the opportunities for thrill seeking young men looking to escape 9 to 5 drudgery are what they've always been: sex, drugs, rock n' roll, fashion, football and fighting. Written by
Having read Kevin Sampson's thoughtful novel the screen version is something of a disappointment. Characterisation and motivation are largely over-looked in favour of scenes of adrenaline-charged violence. The clothing and style of the era are meticulously created for "The pack" (the hooligan group that Carty joins) but you have to question why the people they fight are generally older less fashionably dressed groups. The pack also emerge from every fight with barely an injury. The music itself is good but often misused - is Joy Division's delicately mournful "The Eternal" really an appropriate soundtrack to a group of bovver boys snarling their way down the street? Shane Meadows "This is England" offers a far superior vision of the period.
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