Friday, 15 June 2012

filmbore pick of the week - Tyrannosaur


Director: Paddy Considine
Screenplay: Paddy Considine
Starring: Peter Mullan, Olivia Colman, Eddie Marsan
Year: 2011
Language: English
UK rental release: February 2012


While running rehearsal's on 1999's A Room For Romeo Brass, Shane Meadows called upon the assistance of his old friend, Paddy Considine, to represent a group of youths befriending (then eventually harassing) a couple of young lads, mirrored off past experiences of Shane's own childhood. Through fresh ideas and dialogue brought to the table by Paddy, Shane took a different slant and altered the script to allow the horde of terrors to become the mysterious individual Morell, casting Paddy in the role. This began the career of an acting behemoth, breathing raw realism in front of the lens with an air of gravitas only ever apparent in the naturally talented. Little did Mr Meadows know that he was unleashing, in my opinion, a hero of British cinema, who may only be fully spreading his wings since making the decision to sit on the other side of the camera.

Tyrannosaur, the directorial debut from Paddy Considine, evolved from his short film, Dog Altogether. This gritty reveal of a man in a blitzkrieg of torment is captivating from the start, as Peter Mullan stars as Joseph, the simmering force of nature beholden to his self-perpetuating rage.

Early scenes depict Joseph as a man driven by some deep buried resentment. Mullan's performance is so rich his character is intriguing from the off. These initial moments are just a taster leading to his first encounter with charity shop manager Hannah, played by the captivating Olivia Colman. Not only does she deliver a humbleness to the role, but her forthright consideration to this broken man is both heartfelt and strong. This unlikely match of souls somehow find a link, while what follows is a brewing, tense friendship between two unlikely characters. While Joseph's vulnerability and kindness are tested through his new-found redemption in Hannah, she finds solace in this attempt to reach out, leading to open up to the darkness in her own life.

A few light moments are scattered throughout, but be warned...this is no standard British drama! It's forceful and direct, taking you on a journey of tension. There's great confidence and patience in the delivery of some scenes, giving it a great deal of realism. It doesn't pull punches while the plot unfolds either, as we are rewarded with startling reveals when delving deep into our lead's motives. Overall, even though there is fire in this film's belly, it's a very approachable piece, and I'd imagine that it would strike a chord with anyone who watches it.

This is a truly fantastic film, with stunning performances, honest writing and superb direction. Paddy Considine may "wow" as an actor, but his ability to direct is a welcome surprise. If this is a flavour of his up-and-coming body of work, then this is an exciting time for British cinema!


  1. Nice review I'm totally going to watch this, I've had it a while just not got around to it. Seems to be one of those films you need to be in the right frame of mind to watch.

  2. Yeah, you'd think that...but when you put it on you'll fall straight into it. It's a cracking film. Spread the word!