Ricky Tomlinson and Debra Stephenson - A host of stars from a variety of British soap operas were photographed as they arrived for the British Soap Awards 2015 which were held at the Palace Hotel in Manchester, United Kingdom - Saturday 16th May 2015
A drama set around a cultural movement in 1970s Britain, this film captures the period beautifully, but its story is so underdeveloped that it leaves the fresh young cast without proper characters or relationships to play. The depiction of teens in need of their own sense of belonging is strong, but without a story to connect with, the film leaves its audience struggling to maintain interest.
It's 1974 in Lancashire, and teenager John (Elliot James Langridge) is an outcast at school in search of some friends. Then the lively Matt (Josh Whitehouse) introduces him to Northern Soul, underground American R&B that's circulated on bootleg records. So he drops out of school, disappointing his favourite teacher (Steve Coogan) and his parents (Christian McKay and Lisa Stansfield). As he digs deeper into the movement, John makes some new friends (including Antonia Thomas and Jack Gordon) and takes on the star DJ Ray (James Lance) by scrounging for never-heard recordings. But along with learning a new way to dance, John is also introduced to the drug scene, which basically scuppers his and Matt's plan to save cash for a trip to America. And it's Ray who understands that John's only hope of success as a DJ is to ditch Matt.
The best part of this film is this friendship between John and Matt, which was sparked by a shared interest in soul music and then was strained by the scene itself. Writer-director Elaine Constantine vividly captures this world, including the teen sense of hopefulness and independence. But she seems far more interested in depicting the period and the music than in keeping a focus on the characters and their friendships. People drift in and out of the story, relationships refuse to develop into anything meaningful, subplots come and go at random, the romance is barely hinted at and the drug-addiction strand starts to get preachy.
Continue reading: Northern Soul Review
Elaine Constantine's 'Northern Soul' promises to tell the real story of the legendary dance scene.
Northern Soul, Elaine Constantine's new British film about the dance culture that swept across the north of England in the 1970s, will be released on October 17. It features an intriguing and talented cast including newcomer Elliot James Langdridge, musician Lisa Stansfield and veteran Ricky Tomlinson, as well as cameos from Steve Coogan and John Thompson.
Elliot James Langdridge [L] and Ricky Tomlinson [R] in 'Northern Soul'
Constantine, a documentary filmmaker and photographer has a deep attachment with the scene, having got into it as a schoolgirl in Bury, Lancashire.
John (Elliot James Langridge) doesn't fit in. He is victimised by his teacher (Steve Coogan), his mother (Lisa Stansfield) is ashamed of him, and he is often bullied. He fights back in whatever small way he can, but there is nothing he can fully channel his energy into. That is, until he discovers northern soul. Not only can he express his heart and soul on the dance floor, but he steadily begins to gain more and more confidence from day to day. He and a friend decide to start up their own northern soul dance club in order to raise funds to travel to America. As events steadily escalate out of control, the one thing that remains constant in the boy's lives is the soul music.
Continue: Northern Soul Trailer
The hapless manager will make his comedy return with shooting to kick off later this year
Everyone’s favorite football manager is back. No, Sven hasn’t been appointed to guide England to a First Knockout Round defeat at this summer’s World Cup in Brazil. Mike Bassett is back in the England set up to assist German coach Jorgen Mannstein in the new film, Mike Bassett: Interim Manager.
Ricky Tomlinson is back for more England action
The return of this comedy giant sees Ricky Tomlinson play Mike Bassett again, whose infamous rants and working class background tied in with that scouser wit endeared him to the nation when football fever was at its highest.
Paul (Freeman) is a loser who teaches at a primary school in the Midlands. It's been five years since his girlfriend Jennifer (Jensen) left to pursue a Hollywood career and best pal Gordon (Watkins) took a job in a posh school that puts on the most acclaimed Christmas shows in the city. This year, a moronic teacher's assistant Mr Poppy (Wootton) and a desperate-for-fame headmistress (Ferris) have put Paul in charge of the nativity play once again. And a little lie turns Paul's show into the talk of the town.
Continue reading: Nativity! Review
The plot is loosely framed around the kilt-wearing master chemist Elmo McElroy (Samuel L. Jackson) who has developed a new illegal drug that produces a high that is 51 times better than cocaine, acid, or ecstasy. When McElroy attempts to sell the drug's formula to a mobster named The Lizard (Meat Loaf), the deal goes bad and McElroy flees to Liverpool with only his golf clubs. While there, he meets up with Yankee-hating thug Felix DeSouza (Robert Carlyle) assigned to help McElroy score $20 million for the drugs from a local gangster (Ricky Tomlinson). Unfortunately, this deal also fails. DeSouza and McElroy must now find new buyers while staying clear of other rogue groups who want the formula, and an assassin (Emily Mortimer) hired by The Lizard to return McElroy to the states.
Continue reading: Formula 51 Review
This silly little comedy out of the UK offers a simple premise sent against a presumably scandalous backdrop: the world of fetish/S&M clubs. It's all fun and games until Johnny Law comes sniffing around, trying to figure out who's behind the clubs (which meet in secret) and how to prosecute them for, er, something. The government's priggishness seems to revolve around problems with shock treatment being practiced on the slave types. Solution: Hire a young "computer whiz" (in this film, that means a guy who knows how to use a chat room) to "infiltrate" the bondage world and gather evidence against them.
Continue reading: Preaching to the Perverted Review