Father Jack is imprisoned for a crime that he has committed. The inmates suspect him of paedophilia and begin to persuade his teenage cellmate of this. His true crime is confessed to a prison guard with whom Jack has fallen in love.
After his family falls apart Joshua is forced to move to Canada to live with his estranged father. It is there he meets Jay, a local tattoo artist. The two becomes closer despite the negativity that surrounds them.
Malik has a lot on his plate when he returns home to Tunisia after living in France. He's processing his father's death, he can't come out to his mother, and his childhood anxieties have ... See full summary »
Teenage gang member Cal hides his sexuality from his fellow happy slapping gang members' often futile and violent dislike of anyone who isn't the same as them, be they unsuspecting shoppers, foreign students, gays, etc. Hooking up with a random stranger (Scott), Cal is unaware that this chance meeting will eventually provide him with choices and routes of escape from the tedium of his unambitious and depraved life. When his world collides with Olivier, a French student he rescues from a pointless beating, he encounters a lifestyle that presents as many new experiences as it does obstacles.Written by
This film is awesome! Encompassing the fairly major subjects of homosexuality, Chav gangs in 21st century Britain, self love and finding one's place in the world, 'Shank' really packs a hard punch, just about pulling these hefty themes together, all in all a real credit to the sharp script, snappy editing / direction and raw but engaging performances from the exceptionally young Bristol based cast.
I found it great to see low budget British film-making still in existence with such energy, passion and verve, which is sadly so lacking in the majority of big budget releases, certainly when it comes to the tricky issue of sexuality, (usually it's the tired old coming of age/ coming out to the parents type of thing, or in the bigger budget releases, Julia Robert's best friend is a good as it gets.) This film takes the sexuality/ coming out / rites of passage story and actually tries to say something about the less than perfect society in which we all live, both good and bad, evident in the the highly charged scenes of sexual violence contrasted with the incredibly tender love scenes. It's the sort of the duality of humanity.
Sure, some of the performances and plot shifts are a little creaky, but it's the film's constant ability to shock, involve and surprise that ultimately win through. It's one of those rare films that stays with you for a long time after, not a bad thing in my book. There's some great DVD extras as well, including an informative making off and a pretty funny gag reel.
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