Somers Town

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Review byMatthew Turner20/08/2008

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 75 mins

Enjoyable, sharply directed drama with a superb script and strong performances from Turgoose and Jagiello.

What's it all about?
Partly funded by Eurostar, thanks to a rather spectacular bit of product placement, Shane Meadows' latest film stars Thomas Turgoose (This Is England) as Tomo, a young runaway who comes to London and is promptly mugged. A chance meeting in a cafe leads to a developing friendship with bored Polish teenager Marek (Piotr Jagiello) as the two attempt a few rubbish money-making schemes, steal Tomo some clothes (leading to him wearing a woman's blouse for most of the film) and try to woo the French waitress (Elisa Lasowski as Maria) that Marek has a crush on.

The Good
Named after the area between the three main northbound train stations in London, Somers Town paints an interesting picture of the area and is beautifully shot throughout, with crisp black and white cinematography courtesy of Natasha Braier. The story may be short and simple, but it's nonetheless engaging, presenting a naturalistic portrait of the emerging friendship between the two boys.

The performances are great too: Turgoose proves that This Is England was no flash in the pan, demonstrating fantastic comic timing and a gift for improvised dialogue. He's also extremely funny, particularly when he's complaining about something (which is pretty much all the time).

The Great
Jagiello is equally good and he has wonderful chemistry with Turgoose, while there's strong support from Ireneusz Czop as Marek's dad, a construction worker on the new St Pancras. In addition, Elisa Lasowski is delightful as Maria and Meadows regular Perry Benson is extremely amusing as neighbourhood wheeler-dealer Graham, who gives the boys their first job.

The charming script is packed with excellent scenes and there are several laugh-out-loud moments, but the highlight is Tomo and Marek treating Maria to a day out with their "special taxi service".

Worth seeing?
Somers Town is a delightful film that brims with gentle humour and presents an emotionally engaging friendship, thanks to excellent performances from its two young leads and Meadows' impressive direction.

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Somers Town
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Content updated: 17/06/2019 15:07

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