For those of you who don’t enjoy bloody fights, nudity and prison shower scenes, you may want to give Starred Up a miss when it hits UK cinemas on Friday 21 March.
The gritty prison drama stars former Skins actor (and ex-boyfriend of Tulisa) Jack O’Connell, and was nominated in eight categories at the British Independent Film Awards.
Jack plays the role of Eric Love, a 19-year-old who is prematurely transferred from a young offenders’ institution to adult jail for being too violent. Which, thinking about some of the scenes in the film, is an understatement. This guy is unhinged. And his short temper is shown to viewers within the first 20 minutes of the film, when he attacks another inmate who disturbs his sleep.
Also locked up with him is his father Nev, which makes things super complicated but great fun to watch. The two inmates have a problematic relationship that is unlikely to ever get mended.
In prison Eric joins a discussion group held by a therapist called Oliver, with an obsession for young violent men and reforming them. By joining the group Eric discovers new ways to survive, and gets caught up in prison politics along the way.
Starred Up is a great addition to British cinema and sees Jack O’Connell in a role that seems to have been tailor made for him.
The film was directed by David Mackenzie, the man behind Young Adam and Hallam Foe, and shot on location in Crumlin Road Prison in Northern Ireland.
UK Release Date: March 21, 2014
Running Time: 106 minutes