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Fish Tank (2009)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  11 September 2009 (UK)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 42,644 users   Metascore: 81/100
Reviews: 108 user | 241 critic | 31 from Metacritic.com

Everything changes for 15-year-old Mia when her mum brings home a new boyfriend.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Mia
...
...
Joanne
Rebecca Griffiths ...
...
Billy
Sydney Mary Nash ...
Keira
Carrie-Ann Savill ...
Tyler's Friend
Toyin Ogidi ...
Tyler's Friend
Grant Wild ...
Keeley's Dad
Sarah Bayes ...
Charlotte Collins ...
Tall Dancing Girl
Kirsty Smith ...
Dancing Girl
Chelsea Chase ...
Dancing Girl
Brooke Hobby ...
Dancing Girl
...
Billy's Brother
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Storyline

Mia, an aggressive fifteen-year-old girl, lives on an Essex estate with her tarty mother, Joanne, and precocious little sister Tyler. She has been thrown out of school and is awaiting admission to a referrals unit and spends her days aimlessly. She begins an uneasy friendship with Joanne's slick boyfriend, Connor, who encourages her one interest, dancing. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Live, love and give as good as you get.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

11 September 2009 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Akvarij  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£103,180 (UK) (11 September 2009)

Gross:

$373,060 (USA) (7 May 2010)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Katie Jarvis, who plays Mia, had never acted before this film. A casting director spotted her having a fight with her boyfriend at a train station and offered her the role. See more »

Goofs

When Mia takes the alcohol bottle from the woman at one of the parties, it is almost empty. Later, Mia is seen drinking from the bottle in her mother's bedroom and the bottle is half full. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Mia calls Keeley using a cellphone]
Keeley: [from an answering machine] Hey, it's Keeley. Leave me a message.
Mia: Keeley, it's me. What's going on? I've left like three messages. I said sorry, didn't I? You know what I'm like. I was pissed off. Ring me back, you bitch.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The EE British Academy Film Awards (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Just to Get a Rep (Explicit)
Performed by Gang Starr
Written by The Guru (as Keith Elam) / DJ Premier (as Chris Martin)
Published by Universal Music Publishing Ltd
Licensed courtesy of Virgin Records Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A far cry from the age of aquarius.
30 September 2010 | by (Edinburgh.) – See all my reviews

There's a lot of great content here in this movie and it's already been rightly praised in almost all corners but when I started watching Fish Tank I started to get worried. The first 10-15 minutes were very reminiscent of Thirteen for me and I hated Thirteen with my reasoning being thus: I dislike annoying teeny girls in real life so why would I want to spend the duration of a movie stuck with them? Drama is supposed to be "life with the dull bits cut out" and while we can often handle masses of detail and indeed endure movies with unlikeable characters they have to be done in such a way that it doesn't become a chore.

Then Fish Tank changes gear and, throughout the course of the movie, it does so two or three times in ways both surprising and loaded with provocative moments.

The basic story is all about Mia, a tough young teenager who seems not to have ever been given any confidence in the future her path could take and so lashes out at anyone around her while momentarily escaping into the pleasure of dancing by herself in a vacant flat. Her mother is a drunken woman who clearly doesn't want her kids around whenever she has a chance to party and her younger sister is just, well, used to things and acts accordingly. But things look up when the mother brings home a fella (Connor, played brilliantly by Michael Fassbender) who actually treats the girls with a bit of kindness and shows them encouragement, especially encouraging Mia's dancing ability.

The core of the movie focuses on Mia's feelings for Connor. Here is a man who can treat her both as a daughter and as an equal, depending on the circumstances, and this is clearly a first for her. Torn between wanting to reclaim lost moments of childhood and embracing her upcoming adult life, Mia is confused and veers between happiness and resentment. Every little girl wants to be a princess at times, like Rapunzel waiting to be whisked away, but some only end up ironically letting their hair down too far.

Performances across the board are strong, with Michael Fassbender and Harry Treadaway being as good as ever and Katie Jarvis simply brilliant in her first feature role, and the direction by Andrea Arnold (working from her own screenplay) manages to keep things just about bearable even as characters try to ruin their own happiness or the happiness of others. The camera-work and sound are at times intrusive while in other moments keep back a little from events, mixing things up so that we get a chance to breathe as the tribulations of life threaten to stifle certain people caught up in events.

For me, personally, I must say that I didn't like the way certain situations developed but the movie serves as a reminder of life and the range of possibilities contained within each and every human being. And I must add that, despite my disappointment with parts of the movie, the whole thing adds up to something pretty great and I never expected to be quite so tense during a last half hour that I'm sure will have many on the edge of their seats. Powerful stuff.


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