Breakfast With Jonny Wilkinson

"Good"

Breakfast With Jonny Wilkinson Review


Warm and likeable but rather thin, this gentle British comedy spins a tangled farce around the 2003 Rugby World Cup. With its limited setting and small cast, it feels like the filmed version of the play that it is. Even so, it's a playful look at sporting fans at the moment of a great national triumph, and rising star George MacKay (How I Live Now) makes the most of his underwritten character.

He plays Jake, the hot-shot young player on a club team somewhere in England. This morning the team's clubhouse is hosting live telecast of the World Cup Final, with England playing Australia in Sydney. But only seven people have turned up. Club manager Dave (Pace) is preoccupied because his position is being challenged in an upcoming election by Aussie goofball Matt (Beckley) and rugby obsessive Nigel (Lindsay), whose wife couldn't have picked a worse time to go into labour. It doesn't help that Matt is cheering for the wrong side today, or that he brought his sexy friend Lena (Varela) along. Although Jake doesn't mind having her around.

Each of these characters has something pivotal going on in his or her life. Also on hand are the feisty Nina (Cordingly), captain of the club's championship ladies' team, and a provocative journalist (played by playwright and screenwriter England) covering the fans' reaction to the big match. As the game progresses, these people get up to all sorts of tangled mayhem. At the centre, MacKay shines as the insecure young man who feels such a connection with England's captain Jonny Wilkinson that he heads out to the field to mimic his every kick.

These trips outside help widen the story from the single set, while MacKay and Varela provide more subtle performances than the broader comical strokes of everyone else. They also get to play a sexy locker-room scene together to the strains of the rugby hymn World in Union. No, there's nothing very sophisticated about the soapy story. Each person's issues are resolved simplistically, and even the political wrangling never gets very deep. On the other hand, it is a lot of fun, especially when the match's exhilarating finale is echoed in the clubhouse drama.



Breakfast With Jonny Wilkinson

Facts and Figures

Genre: Comedy

Run time: 95 mins

In Theaters: Friday 22nd November 2013

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 56%
Fresh: 5 Rotten: 4

IMDB: 5.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Simon Sprackling

Producer: Rob Perren

Starring: Michael Beckley as Matt Holden, Beth Cordingly as Nina Ritchie, Chris England as Bill Exley, as Nigel Maitland, as Jake Whittam, as Dave Dowson, Gina Varela as Lena Pogliacomi

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