Space Mission: Reaching for the Stars

10 mins read

Space Mission: Reaching for the Stars			  1

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Forbidden to watch TV or go to the movies by his ultrareligious parents, young Will (Bill Milner) gets a hold of a camera, and his mind blossoms in this nostalgic comedy from the team behind The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Set in 1980s Britain, the film tells the tale of the friendship that blossoms between Will and class bully Lee (Will Poulter) when the latter recruits Will to help him make a home movie inspired by Rambo: First Blood.

Director:

Garth Jennings

         <div class="section"><h6 id="cast">Cast:</h6>          <table border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" width="100%">                         <tbody><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Zofia_Brooks/30062947">Zofia Brooks</a>                                                      </td>                    <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      Neil Dudgeon                                              </td></tr>                 <tr><td>&nbsp;</td>                      </tr><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Adam_Godley/30001783">Adam Godley</a>                                                      </td>                    <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Tallulah_Evans/30062948">Tallulah Evans</a>                                           </td></tr>                 <tr><td>&nbsp;</td>                      </tr><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Diane_Leach/30062949">Diane Leach</a>                                                      </td>                    <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Bill_Milner/30062950">Bill Milner</a>                                             </td></tr>                 <tr><td>&nbsp;</td>                      </tr><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Will_Poulter/30062951">Will Poulter</a>                                                      </td>                  <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Paul_Ritter/30017465">Paul Ritter</a>                                             </td></tr>                 <tr><td>&nbsp;</td>                      </tr><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Jessica_Hynes/20056980">Jessica Hynes</a>                                                      </td>                    <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Eric_Sykes/20024728">Eric Sykes</a>                                           </td></tr>                 <tr><td>&nbsp;</td>                      </tr><tr><td width="49%">                                                              <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Ed_Westwick/30062953">Ed Westwick</a>                                                      </td>                    <td>&nbsp;</td>                  <td width="2%"> </td>                   <td width="49%">                                                      <a href="http://www.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Charlie_Thrift/30062952">Charlie Thrift</a>                                           </td></tr>                 </tbody></table></div>                                       <h6>Genres:</h6><p><a href="http://www.netflix.com/Genre/Comedy/307">Comedy</a></p><table border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr><td width="49%">&nbsp;</td><td>&nbsp;</td><td width="2%">&nbsp;</td><td width="49%">&nbsp;</td></tr><tr><td>&nbsp;</td></tr><tr><td width="49%">&nbsp;</td><td>&nbsp;</td><td width="2%">&nbsp;</td><td width="49%">&nbsp;</td></tr><tr><td>&nbsp;</td></tr><tr><td width="49%">&nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table><p><u><strong>THE AV REVIEW</strong></u>

We first meet Will Proudfoot (Bill Milner) when he’s reading Bible verses for his church. They stand in front of a theatre where a “Rambo” film is playing, but all of the congregation faces away from the marquee, including young Proudfoot who is reading to them.

Next, he’s sent out of the classroom so the other students can watch a film. It turns out, this is Proudfoot’s first encounter with the ‘worldies’ since his family comes from a strict religious sect called The Brethren. Will’s family has been through some changes since his father died the summer prior of an aneurysm.

Out in the hall, Will encounters the school terror, Lee Carter (Will Poulter) who’s been sent out of his class for causing trouble. An accident gets a fish bowl broken and Will placed in Lee’s debt for taking the fall for the punishment.

Will agrees as part of his debt to Lee to be the stuntman in Lee’s film, which he plans to enter in the BBC Youth Filmaker Competition. The two become blood brothers, but it’s a rocky brotherhood. Will’s family could get excommunicated for Will’s dealing with the worldlies and Lee’s parents have abandoned him in the care of a less-than-maternal older brother. Then things only get worse when Didier (Jules Sitruk), a French foreign exchange student, shows up and changes everything.

The storyline follows a rather predictable progression, but what makes the film unique is the multitude of exaggerated stereotypes and off-the-wall characters. Will’s heavily sheltered childhood has created an introvert desperate to escape the confines of his lifestyle, and he is alternately eccentric and sweetly innocent. Conniving and obnoxious terror Carter is contrary to Will in almost every way. Clearly a product of his disruptive upbringing, he rebels against authority as often as possible and scoffs at the idea of order. Both boys suffer from a common ailment – the lack of a father figure and a stable home, and watching their friendship grow is easily the most entertaining aspect of the film. Complementing these two are several conflicted characters whose eccentricities easily rival their own. Most notably is Didier, a French foreign exchange student whose outrageous style and attitude awes the English boys into forming a cult of followers. Even many of the teachers and the no-nonsense Brother Joshua seem infused with peculiar traits in their personalities.

 

The DVD is light, but it’s packed with enough content that allows a second take into this quirky Euro-title. It never got quite the admiration it deserved in its brief U.S. theatrical run. But, I honestly believe that it will find a new life on DVD. The AV Nation needs to make sure of it. So, head out and buy it!

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