Cult Labs

Cult Labs (
-   General Film Discussions (
-   -   What Have You Bought Recently? (

Nosferatu@Cult Labs 29th July 2021 12:25 PM


Originally Posted by Justin101 (Post 656794)
I've never seen Somers Town but I really like the others :) a well spent fiver.

Somers Town is a great film, highly recommended viewing. This is a review I wrote when the DVD was first released:

It must have been a tough decision for Shane Meadows as to how best to follow up what is regarded as the best film of his career, This Is England. Deciding to take a year off, he instead had the busiest 12 months of his career, including making a film whilst on holiday. Eurostar approached him to make a short but Meadows baulked at the idea of making a commercial film but said they could talk to Paul Fraser, the screenwriter he worked with on Once Upon A Time In The Midlands. Fraser wrote a short script, a story of a lad who travels to London and, in the area known as Somers Town, befriends a Polish migrant, which Meadows agreed to make into a short. Rehearsals showed that there was much more to the story than he realised and the short grew into a feature.

The film follows Tomo who has, for reasons unknown, run away from his home near Nottingham, travelling by train to London. On his first night he is mugged and his belongings are nicked, he manages to find the woman he sat next to on the train and blags breakfast and a tenner from her. Determined to stay in the capital, he turns his attention to the lad sitting at the next table and the photos he’s flicking through. The pictures are mostly of a French waitress called Maria on whom they both develop a crush, becoming close friends in the process.

Marek invites Tomo to stay at his flat though his presence must be a secret from his dad who works at the Eurostar terminal and has very little to do with his son. Tomo follows Marek around as they court Maria and get casual work from local geezer Graham, who is a wonderful creation and extremely well played by Perry Benson..

Somers Town is a short film, just over an hour with credits, yet you never feel short changed as it is a beautifully told simple story of friendship, well filmed and with a superb soundtrack. Although Thomas Turgoose came to the fore in This Is England with a fascinating performance, his screen presence here (and in Eden Lake) shows he is an actor of real skill and potential. Thanks to Meadows’ penchant for improvisation, Turgoose’s relationship with Piotr Jagiello, who plays Marek, and Jagiello’s conversations (in Polish) with Ireneusz Czop seem real and the film has a naturalistic feel which, at times, seems more like documentary than fiction. The interaction between Turgoose and Jagiello is key and makes the film such a joy to watch. In the supporting roles, Perry Benson, Ireneusz Czop and Elisa Lasowski impress.

I’d heard about the funding deal prior to seeing the film and I thought it would be something sinister and impinge on Meadows’ creative freedom but apparently Eurostar left him alone so it doesn’t affect the film and, when they use the service, it feels natural and in no way forced.

The Disc

Extra Features
There are interviews with Shane Meadows, Perry Benson, Thomas Turgoose and Piotr Jagiello. These are revealing and interesting though typical EPK stuff with the real content coming in the 68 minute Shane Meadows’ Master Class At The Tribeca Film Festival. This is a long and detailed Q&A session with lots of information about his life and career, including Somers Town. The package is rounded off with TV Spots and the Theatrical Trailer.

The Picture
Beautifully shot in black and white, this looks very good on DVD without having the definition that the digital version I saw at the cinema had. Monochrome suits the film and I can’t imagine how it would look in colour. The much publicised ending where it changes to colour, shot on 8mm, is done for aesthetic reasons and the drop in quality and gaudy colours reflect the fantasy nature of the section.

The Sound
Both the Dolby Digital 2.0 and 5.1 tracks are very good and whilst the surround has the edge when it comes to presenting the music, the stereo option is perfectly adequate for such a dialogue driven movie. The score and songs by Gavin Clark and Ted Barnes are wonderful, telling the story and setting the tone and mood perfectly.

There are excellent English HoH subtitles available and the Polish dialogue has burnt in English subtitles.

Final Thoughts
Somers Town is a terrific little film: funny, heart-warming, accessible and hugely enjoyable and the DVD is a decent, though not great, package with plenty for Shane Meadows fans to enjoy.

Justin101 29th July 2021 01:14 PM

Sounds good thanks Nos :)

Demdike@Cult Labs 29th July 2021 01:30 PM


Originally Posted by Justin101 (Post 656800)
Sounds good thanks Nos :)

It doesn't sound up my street to be honest.

Seeing Perry Benson's name mentioned reminded me of British torture porn effort Mum and Dad. A grimy slice of the macabre where low budget British grime adds nicely to proceedings.

iank 30th July 2021 04:52 AM


Demdike@Cult Labs 30th July 2021 12:40 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Has anyone bought the latest copy of Total Film?

It has Michael Myers on the cover. I was wondering if it's worth buying purely for the John Carpenter interview and retrospective?

trebor8273 30th July 2021 07:27 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Charity shop finds.

Watched these many moons ago when I was a kid, all I can remember is I watched them and thinking them quite boring!

Older eyes will probably enjoy them more now.

Demdike@Cult Labs 30th July 2021 10:22 PM


Originally Posted by trebor8273 (Post 656867)
Charity shop finds.

Watched these many moons ago when I was a kid, all I can remember is I watched them and thinking them quite boring!

Older eyes will probably enjoy them more now.

It's not that many years since i saw Shogun and i thought for the most part it was pretty boring although it did have it's moments.

I'd like to see the other two series you bought though.

Demdike@Cult Labs 31st July 2021 12:30 PM

3 Attachment(s)
New arrivals this week - Three final ones from the Arrow promotion and Macabre. All from Amazon.

iank 2nd August 2021 03:22 AM

Bought from JB:

iank 2nd August 2021 04:33 AM


All times are GMT. The time now is 01:36 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
Copyright © 2014 Cult Laboratories Ltd. All rights reserved.