Fish Tank: Movie Review
Cast: Katie Jarvis, Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Griffiths,
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
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
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.