Heartlands

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Time Out says

Midlands newsagent Colin (Sheen) spends his days behind the counter, his evening on the darts team at the local, and the rest time in blissful ignorance that his beloved spouse is having it away with the darts captain. With the national pub darts championship in Blackpool approaching, the conventions of romantic comedy would seem to dictate a 'triumph of the underdog' finale with the very last dart of the day. Writer Paul Fraser (Shane Meadows' regular collaborator) and East Is East director O'Donnell take a sidestep, however, by charting the scooter-riding path to self-realisation of one of life's milder souls as he phutt phutts across country in pursuit of the faithless lovers. As the route through the Peak District broadens Colin's horizons, you can feel the movie opening out too, forsaking broad suburban knockabout for an unexpected English pastoralism as Alwin Küchler's poetic camerawork basks in the landscapes and the music of folk songstress Kate Rusby comes into play. Sheen errs on the side of 'hello clouds' naivety here, but credit to him elsewhere for keeping us rooting for a deeply unprepossessing protagonist. Addy's brash, Jag-driving pub landlord is a bitterly funny study in male menopausal self-delusion.
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Release details

UK release:

2002

Duration:

91 mins

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