Thursday, 25 March 2010

Fish Tank: Movie Review

Fish Tank: Movie Review

Rating: 7/10
Cast: Katie Jarvis, Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Griffiths, Kierston Wareing
Director: Andrea Arnold
This British film about a 15 year old girl on a council estate has had accolades hurled at it left, right and centre in the UK.
Showing as part of the World Cinema Showcase, it's the story of Mia (brilliantly played by newcomer Katie Jarvis) and her life in the "fish tank" of her world.
Mia's an angry outsider, scornful of the other girls around her and more likely to let loose a tirade of foul mouthed language than try to fit in. In her grey tracksuit, she's a snapshot of many UK teens who feel their lives are going nowhere.
But her world changes one day when her mother brings home a new boyfriend, Connor (Inglourious Basterds' Michael Fassbender) - she's intrigued by this stranger, and the scales fall from her eyes and she starts to see a life outside of her own small world.
There's a certain degree of inevitability to this story - you can see what's coming a mile off; but what you can't see is how powerful the central performance by Katie Jarvis is. She's brilliantly captured the futility and anger of the teen years as she deals with one disappointment after another. However, when she meets Connor, thanks to a multi layered and subtle performance you start to warm up to this lower class ladette as you're drawn into her life.

It's unusual to recommend a film because of one person - but Fish Tank is that film. It rises because of Katie Jarvis' performance and marks out the fact she will be a talent to watch in the future.

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