Thought I’d give this one a whizz because it looked funny on the ITV advertisements, and I like Ron in Harry Potter. Not in that way though. I saw it as being about driving lessons, funnily enough. But it isn’t, really. It’s so much more than that. It’s a tale of love, betrayal, rebellion and friendship, all rolled into one.
The story begins with Ben (Rupert Grint), a shy teenage boy whose parents are highly religious, his mother in particular. She is a really dislikeable character right from the off, keeping her ‘little boy’ on a very short leash. However, she does encourage him to get a job for the summer to help out with the financial situation in their home.
And this is where the fun begins. Ben manages to land himself a job with an elderly, eccentric and out-of-work actress (Julie Walters), whose every other word is a swear word! Their working relationship gets off to an awkward start with Ben being rather frightened of her. Gradually, though, they develop a friendship, and the boy is coaxed out of his shell and they begin to have madcap adventures.
Ben tries to stick to the rules and make the actress (whose name has totally escaped me) behave herself, but she is truly a gem, and a real stroppy bugger into the bargain. I love it. I won’t say too much, but their adventures are really funny, particularly when Ben has already disobeyed his mother several times, then when he finds out he’s been driving all over the country illegally, he freaks out!
A well chosen cast I feel. Grint plays the part well, although I kept expecting him to say “Bloody hell Harry” instead of quoting Shakespeare. Julie Walters was hilarious and Laura Linney, who plays Ben’s mum, was good too. She played the part so convincingly I really wanted to slap her face. But she does get her comeuppance, so it’s all good.
Not much else to say about this one to be perfectly honest. It’s a British comedy with a real mixed bag of emotions and adventures thrown in. If you liked Calendar Girls, then you’ll like this one.