This week was a huge week for movie trailers, we got our first look of the return of Ricky Gervais, as his TV legend role of David Brent from The Office. This was followed by a trailer for the first Star Wars origins story Rogue One.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story centres on how the rebels got the plans, that would eventually enable them to destroy the Death Star. One of these rebels was Jyn Erso, played by Felicity Jones. Watch trailer here:
David Brent: Life on the Road sees a TV crew follow up on what has happened to Brent since he found fame on the Office and we learn he now fancies himself to be a rockstar Watch trailer here:
For the rest of the week , these 2 films where all I saw/read about on all the Social Media platforms that we now frequent so often, and not surprising, both appear to be must see movies!
Sadly, like the forthcoming Ghostbusters, coverage was being made of ‘fans’ not happy that Rogue One like Force Awakens was to have a female lead. Shocking really, as Felicity is coming off being Oscar nominated for her role of Jane Hawking in The Theory of Everything.
She also stars in one of my favourite films of all time, which brings me back to Ricky, as she starred in his film directorial debut, Cemetery Junction which he also wrote with Stephen Merchant, set in Seventies Reading in England.
This may appear to be a run of the mill, coming of age story,but I honestly think it is incredibly underrated and should be talked about, with the likes of The Office, Extras and Derek. Yet is seems to have been widely ignored which is a real shame.
The film follows 3 boyhood friends:
Christian Cooke as Freddie, who has just got a new job as a salesman for Mr. Kendrick’s (Ralph Fiennes) life insurance company;
Tom Hughes plays Bruce, a factory worker, desperate to leave town for new adventures;
Finally, we have Jack Doolan as Paul, who is a station announcer for British Rail. Paul is also known as Snork, as he brought glasses to look like Elton John, but the others think he looks more like one of The Banana Splits.
All 3 boys have their own issues. Freddie desperately wants to better himself through his job, to get married and have a home paid for; Bruce hates his father, blaming him for his mother leaving at an early age and Snork, he just wants a girlfriend, ideally one who loves his hand designed tattoo!
Freddie is shown the ropes from top salesman, Mike, (Matthew Goode) who does not take no for an answer when selling, we learn very early on in the film.
Whilst at the Insurance office, Freddie meets childhood friend Julie, (Felicity Jones) who he has not seen for 12 years, but their friendship is immediately rekindled.
Julie helps expand Freddie’s dreams, sharing stories of the world. He had only dreamed of going to Cornwall! We learn Julie dreams of being a photographer, yet she is also engaged to be married to Mike.
The story is wonderfully told, and you really do want Julie and Freddie to get together, as Mike, and in Particular, Mr. Kendrick, are very much of the opinion that a woman’s place is in the home.
Mention should be made to Emily Watson as Julie’s Mum (she would again play Felicity’s mum in the Theory of Everything). She is excellent as the downtrodden wife, who is desperate for her daughter to have a better life.
Ricky Gervais and Julia Davis are great as Freddie’s parents. As is Anne Reid as Freddie’s gran, who has many great improvised scenes with Ricky, about issues of the Seventies, lack of work, race etc all done in good humour.
David Earl is also good for laughs as Brian, a train station café owner, Steve Spiers is also excellent as a policeman who looks out for Bruce, who will eventually help him learn the real truth about his father. Also at the Insurance Salesman ball, you will see Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington in brief cameo roles.
This really is a great coming of age story, with great characters and is well worth a watch if you have not seen it, especially if fans of Ricky’s TV work. It’s run time of 95 minutes flies past!
We also very much recommend the extra features heavy BluRay, with commentaries and behind the scenes footage, which shows how they made the film look very much like the Seventies!
You can buy it from Amazon here:
Have you seen Cemetery Junction? What is your favourite work so far from Ricky and Felicity? We would love to hear from you here at Barking Mad About Films
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