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Few surprises but quite enjoyable.
William Miller is one of the most talented young actors to emerge in the UK for a long time. In this 3 part drama he plays Sean who is being bullied at school and getting little support or comfort from his mum at home. As the title suggests, he runs away and begins a mini adventure which really needed at least another half hour to work effectively. The strongest episode was the first. Excellent performances all round, and an effective atmosphere. The final two episodes were not as well written, and they seemed a bit hurried. In particular, the final scene where Sean is reunited with his family needed more time. There were some effective moments, such as when Sean's mum's boyfriend, Gary, confronted the bully, and the wonderful performance by Michael Culkin. It was far from dreadful; it just needed a little more time and effort. There is much to be enjoyed about this series if you don't set your expectations too high.
Life of Riley (2009)
Better than it appears
This is one of the most miscast comedies on television. Apart from the baby, Patrick Nolan gives the most natural performance as youngest son Ted Riley. At times he seems to feel sorry for his older co-stars who struggle to deliver their lines with any degree of conviction. However, when you look beyond the awful acting you find a delightfully funny and quite intelligent script, and you have to wonder what it could be like with a more capable cast. It is not that any of the actors are bad actors; it is just that they do not suit this particular project. It does not flow natural for them. So, the best way to approach Life Of Riley is with few expectations and a belief that the pen can sometimes be mightier than the thespian.