Movie Reviews (such as they are)

Friday, December 22, 2006

Born Equal

Usually I tend to avoid TV dramas because they are often overly long (split into two parts or more) and lacking in characterization. However, Britain has a long history of making first-rate one-off dramas, such as Cathy Come Home, Made in Britain, and The Firm. Born Equal looked set to be something in this mould, so I decided to give it a go.

Robert Carlyle (pictured) was the first indication that it might be worth my time. Plus there was Colin Firth -- not a personal favourite of mine, but I respect that he's good at his job. And a young woman who I'd previously seen in the frankly marvellous movie The Magdalene Sisters. A promising line-up, and no mistake.

The premise is sort of a British Crash, I suppose. But where that over-awarded, underachieving piece of contrived Hollywood nonsense failed, Born Equal succeeded admirably, creating compelling, threatening, three-dimensional, believable characters in largely untenable situations, for whatever reason: homeless, socially confused, ex convict, battered wife, immigrant refugee...

From the above description, you can gather that I thought this was a striking little film, all the better for the lack of expectation that comes with something made for TV.

It may not be easy to track down after the event, but if you see it kicking around in the TV schedules, be sure to catch it.

The scores:
Acting: 14
Story: 12
Direction: 13
Enjoyment: 13
Cerebral pleasure: 14
Total: 66