Cemetery Junction (15)

Film

Comedy

CJ_02408.jpg

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5
Rate this
 

Time Out says

Tue Apr 13 2010

It’s tempting to see this debut feature from the creators of ‘The Office’ and ‘Extras’ as a case of poachers turned gamekeepers: all those gags about pop culture and Hollywood, then they go and make a straight-down-the-line coming-of-age yarn, set in the most romantically realised version of 1973 Reading you could imagine. In fact, the seeds were always there: the confidently sustained story, the build-up of emotional resonance and the parochial aspirationalism that characterise ‘Cemetery Junction’ are all of a piece with the writer-directors’ sitcom work.

The film focuses on three lifelong pals entering adulthood: Bruce (Tom Hughes) is all swaggering bravado; Snork (Tom Doolan) is a clown, alternately arrogant and naively inane; and apprentice insurance salesman Freddie (Christian Cooke) is knuckling down to a life of bourgeois comfort he hasn’t quite sold himself on yet. He finds a kindred spirit in childhood crush Julie (Felicity Jones), whose slimy dad (Ralph Fiennes) and fiancé (Matthew Goode) – Freddie’s boss and mentor at the insurance firm – have decidedly lower opinions of her potential.

There are laughs, but this isn’t quite a comedy. Gervais and Merchant have stated their intention to make a classically cool movie along the lines of ‘Saturday Night Fever’ or ‘Rebel Without a Cause’ and they get away with it up to a point. Rather than sniggeringly naff, their ’70s suburbia is handsomely designed and lit, with attractive, engaging kids undergoing unabashedly emotional life-changes.

It’s not a wholly convincing fit: though confidently executed, the film often leans heavily enough on its models to feel formulaic, and its romances map a little too closely on to those of ‘The Office’. Overall, though, it’s refreshing to see a mainstream British film with the ambition to strut its stuff on studio terms. Aspirational indeed.
0

Reviews

Add +

Release details

Rated:

15

UK release:

Fri Apr 9, 2010

Duration:

95 mins

Users say

0
<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:7
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:4
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|27
1 person listening
threeshoes

It is good to see a British film like this making a success, but I would not choose to watch it again. The characterisation is thin and depends on the Office for its relationships. The scenery is good, but unrealistic (it looks like a Cotswold village rather than 70s Reading) and I do have a problem with directors putting themselves in the plot, although they don't go overboard.

Celbelle

I actually really enjoyed this film, It made me laugh which is always a good sign and I loved seeing all the 70's stuff. My only criticism is that it was a bit slow in parts. I'd recommend it and have done to my friends already.

Metal Dog

Pretty dire on all accounts. Ralph Fiennes evil Dad was pitiful, as was the script. "lets go to the Majestic.....its Majestic". Now as I remember the Majestic was not the same place as Wigan Casino so why the Northern Soul cover and dance sequence? Reading in the 70s had loads of Teds, Mods, Bikers and throbbing Reggae sound systems what happened to them? Made it look and feel very boring. Reading looked like some over twee Henley. Just go visit Cemetery Junction today its a lot more interesting. A missed opportunity to stand out and produce something out of the ordinary but this film offers the same bland fare. Shame

zoe

Average film: the acting was good but the storyline was predictable and the humour weak. Not enough happened, there was no drama or suspence, the romance was not built up at all and I left feeling I had wasted 90 mins of my time. There were a few vaguely amusing bits but I can understand why we were the only people in the cinema watching the only screening of the day. A let down, boring and uninspiring...nothing new or imaginatice. BUT the acting and casting was good.

Ruthless Critic

Hilarious in parts, touching in others, this film is a winner. It has, in bucket-loads, what most films lack - warmth. I'd ready too many indifferent reviews beforehand, and so was waiting to be won over; within twenty minutes I was hooked. A thoroughly enjoyable life-affirming film that, in my opinion, you have to see.

Ruthless Critic

Hilarious in parts, touching in others, this film is a winner. It has, in bucket-loads, what most films lack - warmth. I'd ready too many indifferent reviews beforehand, and so was waiting to be won over; within twenty minutes I was hooked. A thoroughly enjoyable life-affirming film that, in my opinion, you have to see.

Ekul89

This is Gervais' first proper crack at making a movie, the invention of lying doesn't really count. I thought for somebody who has had his own record-breaking pod casts/radio show, award-winning tv show, three immensely popular stand-up shows, that his attempt at creating a movie which you enjoyed, which you laughed at, and which you didn't get bored at was incredibly well done. Before you critisise, go look at the directors who write the crap for 'Scary movie 8' and 'date-trip' or whatever trollop they're coming up with, they've had millions and years to make good movies, and are failing. This film beats 90% of the films released this year hands down, so for that - well done Team Gervais!

samuel

An absolutely ace film, gervais and co don't claim it to be anything more than what it is. As a truly uplifting and visually stunning screen play with perfection in both cast and sound track, this film is epic. Its true there is no explosions and bruce willis doesn't kill any russian terrorists, but if you watch this film with an open mind you will enjoy it. Great to see gervais and merchant working together, gervais is back to his best after a rather bland and bland directorial debut. Best part of the film has to be the karl pilkington pop up, genius. Could have done without gervais actually being present in the film. Of course this film is predictable, I don't think the story would have had the desired uplifting effect if freddy turned out to be a ghost or snork developed testicular cancer. Great film 5 stars.

samuel

An absolutely ace film, gervais and co don't claim it to be anything more than what it is. As a truly uplifting and visually stunning screen play with perfection in both cast and sound track, this film is epic. Its true there is no explosions and bruce willis doesn't kill any russian terrorists, but if you watch this film with an open mind you will enjoy it. Great to see gervais and merchant working together, gervais is back to his best after a rather bland and bland directorial debut. Best part of the film has to be the karl pilkington pop up, genius. Could have done without gervais actually being present in the film. Of course this film is predictable, I don't think the story would have had the desired uplifting effect if freddy turned out to be a ghost or snork developed testicular cancer. Great film 5 stars.

philmk

Dull, hackneyed, predictable, unfunny, banal. I'm surprised it was only 95 minutes, it seemed longer. Disappointing.

DV

Enjoyable, with some lol moments, and a slightly rebelious streak. Maybe it could have done with a bit more grit, but any film that features some Led Zep can't be all bad! Good chemistry between the leads.

Alex

some previous gervais films have been a bit of a let down to me but this is really his first big screen project that kept me smiling from start to finish. the plot itself was somewhat predictable but never uninteresting the characters felt at all times real, which drew me in and their are genuine heartfelt moments in the film such as bruce's reconnection with his father. the cast was near enough perfect for what was trying to be achieved, perhaps the only uneccesary performance was from Ricky himself which although at times funny the film was capable of greatness without his input. Gervais' humour often involves his being the butt of the joke which did provide a realistic veiw on race back in the 70s but at no point was this film even slightly racist as it was only their to view peoples awkward response to the odd racial jibe. this film is unlikeley to go down as a classic but its representation of three young men coming of age and finding their own path in life certainly makes it a feel-good light hearted comedy that is well worth watching.

Fatcatmark

I really enjoyed this film, which came as a bit of a surprise. I'd heard some of the negative comments levelled at this but went in with an open mind (plus there was not much else on). I loved the relationship between the three lads and the whole feel of the film. Having lived through the 70's I can remember a lot of the awful fashion and the feeling that everything foreign was a bit exotic but also a bit scary. I liked the way the film developed and loved the banter between Freddie and Julie. Ok, it won't win many awards and won't push any boundaries back but it is a warm, intelligent film with a fantastic soundtrack and a great young cast. Go see it!!

Fatcatmark

I really enjoyed this film, which came as a bit of a surprise. I'd heard some of the negative comments levelled at this but went in with an open mind (plus there was not much else on). I loved the relationship between the three lads and the whole feel of the film. Having lived through the 70's I can remember a lot of the awful fashion and the feeling that everything foreign was a bit exotic but also a bit scary. I liked the way the film developed and loved the banter between Freddie and Julie. Ok, it won't win many awards and won't push any boundaries back but it is a warm, intelligent film with a fantastic soundtrack and a great young cast. Go see it!!

Emily

I think this is the most fantasticly brilliant film i have ever seen in my existance. its better than a jam sandwich, joe i have to say your analogy is simply shiiiiite- NOICE.

Emily

I think this is the most fantasticly brilliant film i have ever seen in my existance. its better than a jam sandwich, joe i have to say your analogy is simply shiiiiite- NOICE.

andy

Awful. This sorry effort seems to have come from a script knocked out on a lazy Sunday afternoon and, at best, is film-making-by-numbers. Hackneyed, with every coming-of-age cliché being roped in to help, this felt a very dated piece of work and I am not referring to the period setting. At times over sentimental, with stock characters doing the obvious, it manages to be both predictable and surprisingly banal. With an apt title I can only see this abject, wearisome, is-this-ever-going-to-end film being the nail in the coffin of Gervais' and Merchant's foray into this genre of film.

bob

I went really wanting to enjoy this film. It sounded promising, I really liked the idea of a story influenced by early 60 s British films, but it just wore me down with its unbelievably lazy writing and very unremarkable film making. Shane Meadows it isn't. Nor The Likely Lads. Why on earth would anyone want to leave a Reading that seemingly had a night club that is a cross between WIgan Casino and off the scale New York funky. Very silly. Why was the ever so nasty fiancée at breakfast with his boss at eight thirty in the morning? I know its a film and takes liberties storytelling-wise but way too many clichés. Mediocre to poor.

tom

im 19 years old and loved the film i dont care if the plots predictable the film was fantastic . Everything about it reminded me in someway about me and my friends. If you like your films with abit more depth this probably isnt for you but from the moment it started i never stopped laughing truelly brilliant and thats coming from some one who cant stand gervais.

tom

im 19 years old and loved the film i dont care if the plots predictable the film was fantastic . Everything about it reminded me in someway about me and my friends. If you like your films with abit more depth this probably isnt for you but from the moment it started i never stopped laughing truelly brilliant and thats coming from some one who cant stand gervais.

matt

I saw this film last night and was almost in shock at how poor it was. I am a big fan of previous gervais and merchant collaborations but this film is an embarrassment in my opinion and for that I am rather gutted. The plot is predicatable, the dialogue felt unrealistic, the performances are either limp and uninspiring or underwritten. I was in shock leaving the pictures and trying to get my head round the reality that the same people who had written the slow destruction, then redemption of David Brent had also written this junk. Was it just me or couldnt you anticpate the end of this story very early into the film? Scenes were so predictable and it felt like soap opera of the hollyoaks variety. I just didnt buy the friendships with the three male leads. Their scenes together were contrived beyond belief and gave me no sense of identity to any of them. Let me be clear. I am a fan of gervais and merchant. I dont feel let down by how bad it was. I feel shocked.

rob

Great film with star performances from a young unknown English cast. You will walk out of the cinema with a smile on your face.

rob

Great film with star performances from a young unknown English cast. You will walk out of the cinema with a smile on your face.

Joe

You can take the Brit out of Hollywood, but you can't take that little bit of tinsel town out of Ricky Gervais. His first collaborative hit with Stephen Merchant dripped the dreariness of Slough. Now returning to his home town of Reading for inspiration, the drab Thames Valley Town is transformed into a Truman Show like community nestling in rolling hills. Gervais has said he wanted to make something inspired by the kitchen sink dramas of the sixties but a whole lot less depressing. Well it's certainly not downbeat. But as any one can tell you a little grit never did anyone any harm when it comes to making a real pearl of a film. The four young leads all hit the mark and there are some wonderfully believable performances from "the grown-ups" not least Gervais himself and the rest of Freddie's family. The underlying racism, in the family home for example isn't made an issue, it's just there as it was up and down the land back in the early seventies and only serves to point up that the past really is another country...albeit one half an hour down the M4. But in the end you know how this film will end and many of the complex threads that are there, get neatly tied up just a little too quickly. British film has traditionally been very good at grim reality, but rather less successful at American style coming of age movies targeted at the all important younger cinema goers. Cemetery Junction tries to address that mis-match. It gets pretty close to the target. But maybe some genres only work because of their settings. Gervais and Merchant both acknowledge that Britain is a country of low expectations as opposed to the American attitude that really anyone can one day become President. Maybe that means that happy endings work in Hollywood, but in places like Cemetery Junction life more often comes to a dead end.