Right, this is take two of this review. Alas I accidentally deleted the first version (weeps into pillow). But life goes on and I’m ready to introduce you to another Top Film.
Drum roll please …
I present to you, Filth from the present past of 2013, directed by John S. Baird (based on the novel by Irvine Welsh). It stars the splendidly Scottish James McAvoy (Mavy), the not-so baby Billy Elliot: Jamie Bell, the wacky Jim Broadbent and quite a few more well-known faces.
The plot of the film is set in the beautifully historic city of Edinburgh where we follow the life of Bruce (Mavy). He is a police officer seeking a promotion whilst trying to win back his wife and child who have left him. We see how his world is full of troubling hallucinations which begin to interfere with his work and home life. The narrative leads to a big reveal at the end which I shan’t spoil for you.
I warn you now, Filth is not for the faint-hearted and not a family film, it’s rammed with crude, black humour, drugs and rather violent sex and violence. But don’t let this put you off, it has much more to offer than that!
Alrighty, let’s get down to why I love this film … Número Uno: James MacAvoy. He creates a sublime characterisation of Bruce, showing him as a gritty, slimy yet wounded soul. He is captivating. A lot of his dialogue is either directly to the camera, breaking the fourth wall, or through voice-over so you’re almost in his mind, which is cool. Along with this, you get to see inside his hallucinations which can be rather trippy in parts but awesome in a messed up way. Mavy has the ability to go from one extreme to another in this film, for example he’ll be totally calm but then face the camera with a crazed, stirred up expression that slightly weirds you out. To further the fact that he’s awesome, he vomits on que in this film, or so I’ve read. Of all the things I’ve heard actors can do, chundering on demand isn’t one of them! Mavy plays a deeply troubled person very convincingly but manages to add some humour to it so it’s not at all depressing. My favourite part of the film is the final minutes where Bruce gives his final message to the audience. It leaves you frozen with your jaw hanging. I won’t say what it is as it’ll ruin the film for you, but trust me, it’s sick.
Secondly, most of you will know this woman as Moaning Myrtle from Hazza Potter, but Shirley Henderson is in this film and is shamazing. She plays Bunty, a housewife who is pestered by a mystery caller (Bruce). In the scenes between her and Bruce, Henderson reveals a feisty and foxy character who is highly animated. She’s brilliant and tackles the role head on.
I could ramble on about all the actors in this film, they’re quite faultless. But the final one I shall mention is Eddie Marsan who plays the husband of Bunty, Bladesey. His portrayal of an overly timid and naive man who can’t handle much in life is spot on. He creates several truly memorable moments in the film.
Filming and editing is slick in Filth, it keeps a good pace and creates a jumbled yet compelling narrative. There are some special effects used very well in Bruce’s hallucinations which add immensely to the portrayal of his messed up mind.
For those of you who know me, you’ll know what a bad potty mouth I have for a young woman of 18. So naturally, I’m loving the unmannerly language in filth. I get tired of films where there’s just non-stop action, fighting and explosions, I like something that challenges me to concentrate and listen as well as watch. Filth offers this on a gold-plated platter of expletives. (F*** yes!) F-bombs are dropped all over the shop. But at the same time, full and important conversations are held throughout.
There’s so much that I haven’t talked about but I don’t want to give too much away. Seeing the film with little information will leave you better amazed as you won’t expect what’s coming.
The whole film has a grimy vibe, hence the title, I like it because of this. It doesn’t try to be clean or happy, it’s messed up but you love it. The writing is sheer genius and shot to match. Out of 10 I’d give it a fully deserving 9.
Take a look at the trailer below and check it out! Let me know what you think if you do give it a go!