Director: Tom Harper
Running time: 89 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15
UK Release date: 19th March 2010 (Limited)
Watched on Sky+ Saturday 30th April 2011.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
I remember hearing about this film when it came out, as I recall, it got a pretty good reception. On the strength of this I decided to give it a viewing. It’s quite hard to put down in words the feelings that are brought forth by this British made coming of age tale of love and loss. This one can really get to you if you’re in the mood for it. I thought it was very good and that the young actors involved were really excellent.
Emily and David are teenagers, they both live at a caravan park on the Norfolk (England) coast. They are like brother and sister, inseparable. One day Emily hears that she is going to have to go and live with her father. This changes everything for David, his feelings for her may run deeper than he is prepared to admit. The following day Emily disappears and David is the first one they call on to find out where she is. Of course he denies all knowledge and they focus on Steve, the security guard at the park. Little do they know that David and Emily have hatched a plan to hide her so she doesn’t have to go and live with her father. Unfortunately things don’t go according to plan and, as time passes, David finds out things about Emily that he wishes he didn’t know. I can’t tell you what it is as I don’t want to spoil it for you.
There are some great songs in the soundtrack from the band ‘Noah and the Whale’, and a nice score by Jack C. Arnold. It’s a very well made film with some really nice cinematography. I particularly liked the use of close-ups. As I said earlier, the two young actors involved are truly excellent. Holliday Grainger as Emily is every bit the young teenage tom-boy she portrays and Thomas Turgoose does an excellent job as the love-lorne David. Also, an honourable mention goes to Rafe Spall as Steve.
I really liked this film. It has a very measured style that gently takes you along the path of this bittersweet tale. It’s unmistakably English and I think it works better for that, playing on your emotions right up until the rather tragic ending. It’s not perfect, the pacing seems a little bit off in places and I felt that some of the characters were a little bit too larger than life, but over all, I liked it. So, if you’re prepared for a bit of an emotional ride with a couple of great performances in a very well shot film, then I can definitely recommend this one to you.
My Score: 7.3/10
(RT = Rotten Tomatoes)
IMDb Page: http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt1022885/
RT Page: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the-scouting-book-for-boys/