HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Watch List
Giraffe
Kat and the Band
Echo
Perfect 10
Octaman
Red Penguins
China Syndrome, The
Babyteeth
Round-Up, The
Around the Sun
Once There Was Brasilia
Peripheral
Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street
Ice
She Demons
Good Girls, The
Hail, Hero!
Faces in the Crowd
Tamango
Traitor, The
Tomorrow
Third Generation, The
Saxon Charm, The
Spy Intervention
Moonrise
Mulan
Killer with a Thousand Eyes, The
Vigil, The
Liberation of L.B. Jones, The
Wizard of Baghdad, The
Ride
Good Manners
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo
Sweet Home
Big Score, The
Siddhartha
Three Outlaw Samurai
Echoes of Fear
Guinea Pig, The
   
 
Newest Articles
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights in with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
   
 
  Naked City On The Edge Of Forever
Year: 1993
Director: Mike Leigh
Stars: David Thewlis, Lesley Sharp, Katrin Cartlidge, Greg Cruttwell, Claire Skinner, Peter Wight, Ewen Bremner, Susan Vidler, Deborah McLaren, Gina McKee, Carolina Giammetta, Elizabeth Berrington, Darren Tunstall, Robert Putt, Lynda Rooke, Toby Jones
Genre: Comedy, DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Johnny (David Thewlis) is an unemployed layabout who has had to flee his home city of Manchester to escape a beating after he rapes a woman in the street; she warns him that she will get her family onto him and that's not something Johnny feels like hanging around for. So he ends up in London, tracking down the home of old girlfriend Louise (Lesley Sharp) after she sent him a postcard telling him where she now lived, never dreaming that he might actually turn up on her doorstep. But it's not really her doorstep, as she shares it with on-holiday nurse Sandra (Claire Skinner) and the also unemployed Sophie (Katrin Cartlidge), so it's Sophie who invites Johnny in while Louise is at work...

The style of writer and director Mike Leigh is all about improvisation, and so it was with Naked, a work that won him the Best Director prize at Cannes, and his star Thewlis Best Actor to boost his career. It's an End Times snarl at the state of modern Britain which goes beyond simple tut-tutting and aggressively rubs the audience's nose in the grime and desperation of lives which are supposed to sum up the futility of it all. However, and it could have been because of the improvisation implemented, the more you examined its themes, the more you peeled away the layers of darkness, all you would find was more darkness underneath. Its point is oblique in ways that the modern life is rubbish surface belies.

At its heart, at its harrowing soul, is the electrifying performance of Thewlis as a man who is shrewd, sarcastic, educated enough to know the Bible and the classics but not educated enough to do anything useful with that information, and by turns disarming and repellent. The opening scene sees Johnny at his worst, raping his victim then shortly afterward stealing a car to get to London where he fails to find much of an improvement in his situation. The best sequences are where he wanders the streets at night, turned off by the clingy advances of Sophie, encountering various misfits and loners and demanding they engage him in conversation. Some, like Ewen Bremner's inarticulate Scotsman, barely tolerate him, but others, like Peter Wight's Brian the security guard, are keener to have him around to stave off their loneliness.

When Johnny meets up with Brian, who invites him to accompany him on his rounds, they engage in chatter that exposes not only Leigh's apocalyptic point of view, but the drawbacks of having a half-formed philosophy based around a complete lack of direction seeing as how mankind is going to be wiped out in 1999 anyway. It's true this is the mood that Naked leaves you with, but even Johnny carries on, with the famous last shot of him stumbling away proving that he also has something driving him even if its purely to get away from anyone who might accomodate his abrasive personality. At times Thewlis is very funny indeed, with Johnny his own worst enemy as he winds up the other characters, never letting the opportunity for a bad pun or over-their-heads reference go by, but are we meant to compare him to the film's most obnoxious creation, the violent and smirking yuppie Jeremy (Greg Cruttwell)? Is Johnny no more than a product of his unlovely environment as he is? It's not clear, and that's why the film is stronger in its despairing atmosphere than its specifics: there are certainly no solutions proffered here. Music by Andrew Dickson.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3521 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Paul Smith
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: