16 Years Of Alcohol

16 Years Of Alcohol

****

Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

The situation feels familiar, but the names are different. Frankie Mac (Kevin McKidd) is growing up in Edinburgh and things are about to change - and not for the better. Dad's playing away from home and secrets don't stay secret for long.

"What does that taste like?" Frankie asks a friend of the family, gesturing towards a glass of whisky. "Like donkey's piss," comes the response. This puts him off at the time, but not for long.

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From innocence to booze to life as a skinhead, Frankie has a career trajectory leading towards bad laddism mapped out as inevitably as his road into acoholism. The drink isn't the end, it's simply a gateway to the violence that tears at his soul. The future is black and Frankie knows it. There comes a time when he realises he must close the door on the past, but will his cronies let him?

What elevates this tale above many similar stories is the compelling performances given by the actors. Right down to the bit part players, there is a complete and easy suspension of disbelief.

Directorially, too, Richard Jobson's debut is full of abiding images that linger long after the final credits. It may not be the happiest movie on offer, but by the end you are hooked on hope.

Reviewed on: 16 Aug 2003
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Life and times of a budding drunk in the mean streets of Edinburgh.
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Read more 16 Years Of Alcohol reviews:

David Haviland ****

Director: Richard Jobson

Writer: Richard Jobson

Starring: Kevin McKidd, Laura Fraser, Ewen Bremner, Susan Lynch, Iain de Caestecker

Year: 2003

Runtime: 102 minutes

BBFC: 18 - Age Restricted

Country: UK

Festivals:

EIFF 2003

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