23rd May 2011

I just saw the excellent new film Attack the Block, written and directed by up and comer Joe Cornish of Adam and Joe Show fame.

Lighter on comedy and heavier on action then I was expecting, Attack the Block is really a redemption story with a touch of British Social Drama.

Nicely paced with laugh out loud sections of seemingly improvised dialogue by a stellar young cast; this is a solid alien invasion/monster in the house film with enough under-stated metaphors and genre twists to elevate it above an enjoyable cultish romp. For example, at one point, the protagonist (who interestingly begins the film as the antagonist) hangs from a British Flag, perhaps symbolic of a British state that still provides a safety net to its citizens, however flimsy and precarious that safety net may seem.

Ultimately, the film shows how an effective external object (in this case an alien invasion) can unite even the most disparate of folks, and in spite of its gritty and often hopeless urban setting, it left me feeling surprisingly hopeful.

The film is beautifully shot by Thomas Townend, with a fantastic soundtrack and a stand out performance by John Boyega.

Lastly, two understated and very funny performances by Nick Frost and Luke Treadaway provide the icing on this already very delicious cake.

Attack the Block is well worth the price of a ticket and is one of those films that is best seen on the big screen.