Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Blackball [2003]
Blackball [2003]
Icon Home Entertainment, VHS Tape, 16 February, 2004
Director: Mel Smith
Actors: Paul Kaye, James Cromwell
Features: Colour, PAL
List Price: £13.99
Used Price: £5.00
Third Party Price: £14.30
Availability: Limited availability
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Customer Reviews

The Badboy of Bowling.

I've seen this film a couple of times now and this is one which I'd give 3.5 stars if I could - but have to decide on either 3 or 4.

After what must have been a few lengthy seconds of deliberation I've opted for 4 stars.

Now, this isn't a film which will blow you away - but it does have some genuinely very funny moments and is one of those heart-warming comedies which doesn't get too sickly (unlike like the wretch-worthy Love Actually). There is a romance, but the film doesn't lose itself and become a Rom-Com, it's more of a comedy involved with class struggle and poking fun at the modern media obsession with 'celebrity'.

The clichés you expect from a film like this are all there - but they aren't all consuming. You can still enjoy the story of the Badboy of Bowls and laugh at the jokes, many of which are visual - I love watching Tony Slattery's hair getting bigger and bigger towards the end of the film.

Paul Kay is brilliant as Cliff Starkey, the orphaned wildchild from the rough estate who learned bowls whilst being brought up by his granddad. His energy makes the film, and the conflict in relationships between his friend and girlfriend is portrayed well thanks to Johnny Vegas' emotional gushing after feeling excluded and used.

Vince Vaughan seems to stand out like a sore thumb as the pushy American agent, his over the top performance seems out of kilter with the rest of the film. His scenes tend to have a "straight to video movie" feel about them. A lot of the plot devices he is involved in are crucial to the film (they show the shallowness of the celebrity fixated media world") but you can't help but think that his casting was purely to help guarantee more box office success. Which is ironic really seeing as the film mocks that sort of behavior.

Little touches such as the pastiche on modern sporting events (becoming over-hyped TV spectaculars) help to raise this film above being a naff conveyor

Highly enjoyable British movie. Funny story and good acting. Worth viewing !

Clever, funny and very watchable!
I first watched this film at university and was very impressed. The interactions between characters was beautifully crafted. This film is good for a giggle and if your a sucker for the west country accent you;ll love it!

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