Made in Britain

I watched Made in Britain last week. I put the DVD in one evening when I was bored and wanted to pass a hour or two before bed. I didn’t realise that it would be quite like it was, and I certainly wasn’t prepared for the intensity I experienced. Tim Roth’s performance was the best I have ever seen in a film – do you know he got the role quite by accident when he walked into the auditions looking for a bike pump? – and even when he wasn’t speaking (shouting), he was absolutely gripping.

I was intrigued because the film started out with a young offender’s – Roth – appearance in court. He was sent to an ‘assessment centre’, and I assumed that we were going to see a tired and predictable tale of redemption and rehabilitation. Oh, how wrong I was. ‘Trevor’ was relentless in his deviance and defiance the entire way through the film, and used every opportunity to subvert the system. He was rude, violent, contemptible, and terrifying; but I developed an affection for him immediately. This wasn’t because he was so clearly troubled, but because I couldn’t help but admire his absolute defiance of everything that we ‘normal’ people subscribe to. He didn’t care, but he vehemently cared about not caring, and I was very drawn to that quality to him. His confidence in himself and his views (however vile we perceive them) was astounding, and he was absolutely unapologetic about who he was.

His life was clearly doomed to prison, and a career of crime, but he completely embraced it because he had found where he believed he belonged in the world in ways some of us never will. I wouldn’t want to be him – no one would, frankly – but in his own very strange and upsetting way, he had it all totally sorted.

14 responses to “Made in Britain

  1. As an aside, Tim Roth has long been one of my favourite actors.

    I shall watch Made in Britain after I have watched This is England at some point this weekend.

  2. I’ve not watched Made in Britain but thought This is England was fantastic – how that young lad coped with the extreme violence at the end I really don’t know! The British film industry really can turn out some stonking, true to life filums that really make you think!

  3. Oh, I didn’t even know he was in it, TG. The Hulk looks like it’s going to be a little dreadful (in terms of how I rate films), even if it does have Ed Norton in the lead role.

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