One of the legacies of post-war British cinema is social realism. Another is the gangster film. The former is championed by affiliates of the Leigh-Loach-`Play for Today' school. The latter by those who mistake Tarantino (et al) for Melies. I have no quarrel with any of them, but allow me a big `Thank Christ!' for CRY FOR BOBO. It's so rare to find a film that kicks out conventions (especially in this most convention-ridden of film production areas: the state-funded short film) and so opens the gates to a flood of cinematic imagination. And CRY FOR BOBO delivers this in aces; a hyper-kinetic blast of (caricatured? Grosz grotesquerie? Cartoon-like? Downright surreal? Felliniesque?) clowning around. that is: literally clowning around. Belly laughs are the order of the day here. And the director has the audacity to take the pith out of both schools, with scenes of faux-gritty social realism (albeit with clowns.) and, without wanting to spoil the ending, High Peckinpahisms. The creators of this film are undoubtedly cine-literate and anarchic individuals, yet with the discipline to strike an absolutely correct balance - especially in terms of the (arresting) performances - and implement a streamlined, confident, professional product. Good on Tartan Shorts for supporting this! We need to see more from David Cairns and his team!
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