An often funny portrait of '90s London through mockumentary interviews with 16 youngsters, "Strong Language" is a clever idea that doesn't overstay its welcome but is surprisingly conventional beneath the surface. No-budgeter, shot in '96 for $:30,000 ($ 50,000) on 16mm, reveals a writer of promise in young director Simon Rumley, with a good ear for speech patterns. But local refs and humor severely limit outlets for pic, which has a belated limited run at London's National Film Theater prior to ancillary in March.
An often funny portrait of ’90s London through mockumentary interviews with 16 youngsters, “Strong Language” is a clever idea that doesn’t overstay its welcome but is surprisingly conventional beneath the surface. No-budgeter, shot in ’96 for $:30,000 ($ 50,000) on 16mm, reveals a writer of promise in young director Simon Rumley, with a good ear for speech patterns. But local refs and humor severely limit outlets for pic, which has a belated limited run at London’s National Film Theater prior to ancillary in March.
Film intercuts, in lively style, the answers to the same questions by an unseen interviewer to a group of supposedly real characters, ages 23 to 31. Topics segue smoothly from debt, Britpop, clubbing, sex and cynicism (which half of them can’t even spell), through restaurants, food and drink, to defecation, racism, AIDS and guns. Linking material is an interview with an unidentified man whose story provides a clever final twist. Characters are all stereotypes (from working-class oik to Sloane Ranger), and their views, though well acted by a bunch of unknowns, embrace a familiar spectrum. Language is extremely ripe.
A Simon Rumley production. (International sales: Stranger Than Fiction, London.) Produced by Simon Rumley. Co-producer, Alex Tate. Directed, written by Simon Rumley. Camera (color), Armando Smit; editor, Adrian Begone; music, Martin Phipps; production designer, Joanna Cross; costumes, Francoise LaCroix. Reviewed at Mr. Young's preview theater, London, Jan. 25, 2000. Running time: 77 MIN.
With: David Groves, Al Nedjari, Paul Tonkinson, Julie Rice, Charlie De'ath, Kelly Marcel, Ricci Harnet, Stuart Laing, Chris Pavlo, Robyn Lewis, Elaine Britten, Thomas Dyton, Ruth Purser, Anthony Warren, Kate Allenby, Tania Emery.
Popular on Variety
John Lithgow and Laurie Metcalf on Playing the Clintons: 'There's a Tremendous Undertow of Melancholy'
Kevin Costner on Oscar Netflix Controversy: 'Movies Are for Theaters'
Jordan Peele on the Message Behind 'Us'
Charlize Theron, Seth Rogen Weigh in on Theatrical vs. Streaming
Kathy Bates on Netflix Awards Debate: Short Theatrical Releases Are 'Dirty Pool'
In today’s film news roundup, Fox Searchlight starts a shorts channel, Uma Thurman signs with ICM and Miramax signs animation exec Michael Lachance. SEARCHLIGHT SHORTS Fox Searchlight Pictures’ chairmen Nancy Utley and Stephen Gilula have announced the launch of “Searchlight Shorts” as a collection of short films. The shorts are available on Fox Searchlight’s YouTube [...]
Ever since global streaming giants Amazon Prime Video and Netflix entered the Indian OTT space in 2016, the conversation around original series has mostly revolved around them, thanks in part to market leader 21st Century Fox’s Hotstar’s circumspect attitude at the time about producing content. Netflix had great success with “Sacred Games,” while Amazon rode [...]
Leaders of Hollywood agencies and the Writers Guild of America made little progress in Tuesday meeting to negotiate proposed rule revisions to how agents represent writers. The WGA said after the meeting — the fifth since Feb. 5 — that talks would resume later this week but did not give a specific day. “The Agencies [...]
The Indian film industry has historically been a male-dominated one, but the winds of change are blowing across the country, albeit slowly. Better-served than the rest of the country is the Mumbai-based Hindi-language industry, where there are several active female filmmakers including Zoya Akhtar (“Gully Boy”), Reema Kagti (“Gold”), Leena Yadav (“Rajma Chawal”), Gauri Shinde [...]
“Black Widow’s” web may soon be growing. Sources tell Variety that Florence Pugh is in talks to join Scarlett Johansson’s standalone superhero film. Pugh has been on the hot list for this second lead role since last fall, but Marvel wanted to open up the field to other actresses at the beginning of the year. [...]
Indonesia’s Miles Film and Korea’s CJ Entertainment are to co-produce an Indonesian remake of Korean hit “Sunny.” The film is a female-driven dramedy about a group of adult friends who reunite 20 years after high school. Directed by Kang Hyoung-chul, “Sunny” was one of the highest-grossing movies in Korea when it was released in 2011. [...]
Indian action film “The Man Who Feels No Pain” has been picked up for a premium streaming release in China by iQIYI. The deal was arranged by Hong Kong sales agent Autumn Sun Company. The collaboration is a first of its kind for both sides. As the exclusive distributor in China, iQIYI is entitled to [...]