One Night in Turin

"Very Good"

One Night in Turin Review


These filmmakers may be guilty of being fanatical about football but, for a narrative documentary, this is a remarkably entertaining film even for non-fans. And it does manage to evoke the passion for the beautiful game.

The movie's thesis is that the 1990 World Cup semi-final in Turin, between England and West Germany, was a pivotal moment in English football history. And they really work to make their case, starting with the economic and political chaos in Britain at the time, along with national outrage over England manager Bobby Robson, fuelled by vicious tabloid headlines. People were still feeling bruised by Maradona's Hand of God (in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final), and no one trusted the new hothead star Paul Gascoigne.

From here the film documents the stages of the World Cup match-by-match, goal-by-goal, from the lows of the opening scrap against Ireland to a remarkable victory against Belgium. All while English hooligans rampaged outside the stadiums, outdone only by the heavy-handed Italian riot squads. The filmmakers assemble this with energy and pace, adapting TV footage in a gorgeously cinematic way and building a strong central plotline that's fuelled by Oldman's almost poetic every-bloke narration.

As the Turin confrontation approaches, the film's snappy editing and clever song score keep us gripped. And we even have a few villains in the story: besides the Italian police, there's the destructive British press undermining morale with deliberately false stories and sensationalised commentary. But as the team comes together, even journalists come on-side by the night of the semi-final. What follows is surprisingly emotional, presented by the filmmakers in an overwrought way that actually generates a lump in the throat.

The film's painstaking detail is somewhat obsessive, but it adds a sense of zealous fervour to the film that lifts it above most documentaries. And the footage is remarkable: from the training grounds to out-of-hours poolside antics, we catch a sharp sense of the footballers' larger-than-life personalities, constantly punctuated by Robson's interviews and reporters' comments. Whether this was actually the "biggest match of a generation" is debatable, but by the time the players are taking their tie-breaking penalty shots, we vividly feel the weight of a whole nation's expectations.



One Night in Turin

Facts and Figures

Genre: Documentaries

Run time: 90 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 19th May 2010

Budget: $180 thousand

Distributed by: New Black Films

Production compaines: New Black Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

IMDB: 6.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: James Erskine

Producer: Victoria Gregory

Starring: Elliott Francis as Footballer, as Narrator

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Chips Movie Review

Chips Movie Review

It's clear from the very start that this movie has little to do with the...

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Advertisement
Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.