Cherrybomb Review: Sex, Drugs & GCSEs

cherrybomb300CHERRYBOMB (15): On General Release Friday 23rd April

If you thought Rupert Grint was badly behaved while bunking off Alan Rickman’s potions classes, then you really haven’t seen anything yet.

Despite a celebrated record of misdeeds at Hogwarts, Harry Potter rarely ended up doing cocaine between lessons, however Misfits star Robert Sheehan is Grint’s best friend here and he’s certainly no stranger to the Class As.

Telling the story of how Malachy (Grint) and Luke (Sheehan) – two mates from very different family backgrounds – cope with the arrival of their bosses alluring and confident daughter, Cherrybomb is a 17 year-old’s orgasm of a film. Drugs, sex, violence and shop-lifting; this piece is a frenetic and destructive ode to all those young people who feel dissatisfied for reasons they’d rather not explain.

It is difficult to forsee people over a certain age getting much from this film. Through no fault of their own they may regard it as naive, hedonistic and immature film-making which poses no serious questions of the audience. In many ways they might be correct. Younger audiences however (particularly Rupert Grint’s fan club who campaigned for the film to have a British release) will probably lap it up.

Malachy has just received excellent GCSE grades and is working part-time under the wandering eye of James Nesbitt at a leisure centre in Belfast. His friend Luke is a chain-smoking tearaway who lives with his alcoholic father in his domineering older brother’s house. They are quite an odd couple but work well enough together until James Nesbitt’s daughter Michelle (Kimberley Nixon) arrives. She is elusive, cheeky, uber-cool and immediately strikes up a friendship with the boys.

Before we go any further, never before in real life or the movies have I seen a group of 16 year-olds as comfortable in their own skin as these three. Watching this is kind of like doing your A-Levels with Tyler Durden, James Dean and Angelina Jolie. Anyway the horny little devils start getting down to it and soon Michelle has a decision to make. The fact that she seems to relish it means that we have little sympathy for her though and as we start to realise that Malachy has some feelings for her we start to side with him, but it’s all very messy…

This film will undoubtedly be a hit with the right audience. Despite some fairly light-weight themes, the strong performances of the three young stars coupled with a churning soundtrack and self-destructive attitude make it a half-decent piece of cinema. A lack of access might stand in the way for older generations however.