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Set Fire to the Stars

  • Film
  • 2 out of 5 stars
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Time Out says

2 out of 5 stars

It’s 1950 and Dylan Thomas is heading to New York. He’s the greatest lyrical poet of his generation, but Thomas is also a booze-fuelled mix of hooligan exuberance, unpredictability and bottom of the glass self-pity. Quite a handful then for his travelling companion, Elijah Wood’s mousy literature prof, whose academic prospects rest on the success of the prestigious poetry reading tour.

Sadly, this ambitious low-budget Welsh drama never quite finds a way to make Wood’s emotional drama matter much to the audience. Co-writer Celyn Jones plays the Welsh whirlwind and lives up to his billing, making Thomas as charismatic and fascinating as he’s selfish and exasperating. The elegant black-and-white camerawork gives it all a whiff of class, and Swansea Bay does its very best to stand in for the Big Apple. It’s just that Wood is trying so, so hard to bring a non-entity character to life, the sheer effort is draining to watch while the movie essentially runs to stand still.

Written by Trevor Johnston

Release Details

  • Release date:Friday 7 November 2014
  • Duration:90 mins

Cast and crew

  • Director:Andy Goddard
  • Screenwriter:Andy Goddard, Celyn Jones
  • Cast:
    • Elijah Wood
    • Celyn Jones
    • Kelly Reilly
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