Playwright, stage director and actress Isitt makes her film directing debut with this adaptation of one of her own plays, a tragi-comic tale of jealousy, resentment and rancour in a quiet Middle England cul-de-sac. Tomlinson is magnificent as Mr Peach, both a curtain twitching busybody and a figure of tragedy, crushed by his failure to meet his wife's expectations. Initial distrust of his new neighbours, the brash, abrasive Chapmans (Daniels and Fielding) soon escalates into warfare when, increasingly frustrated and irrational in the face of a failing career and the threat of bankruptcy, Peach begins to hold them personally responsible for everything that's wrong with his life, mounting a one-man vigilante mission to spy on them at all hours. Isitt has an eye for absurdity and an ear for understated comic dialogue, while the actors turn in sound, believable performances. With its curious blend of straight drama and improvised mockumentary (reminiscent of TV's Neighbours at War), the film provides a footnote to television's current fascination with 'real-life' docu-drama. Neither spoof documentary nor conventional drama, however, the film can't quite decide what it wants to be, and the result is somewhat bewildering.
Cast and crew