Rock roadie, Le Donk, has lived, loved and learned. Along the way, he's lost a classy girlfriend but gained a sidekick, Scorz-Ayz-Ee. He sets out to make Scorz a star with a little help from the Artic Monkeys.
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The year is 1990, the rave scene has just entered England. The sound of the Stone roses lurks toward Shaun and the gang. This means that Woody and Lol are living in a domestic bliss, they are happy again. But this year will see huge changes in everyone. This is the year 1990. This is England.
Lyra Mae Thomas,
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An improvised comedy, shot over five days by Shane Meadows, devised with and starring Paddy Considine. Rock roadie and failed musician, Le Donk has lived, loved and learned. Along the way he's lost a girlfriend but he has found a new sidekick in up-and-coming rap prodigy Scor-zay-zee. With Meadows' fly-on-the-wall crew in tow, Donk sets out to make Scor-zay-zee a star...with a little help from the Arctic Monkeys... This low-budget rockumentary follows Le Donk and Scorz on their journey of a lifetime; it's an unpredictable, irrepressible ode to spontaneous filmmaking - and to a burgeoning UK rap talentWritten by
Shane Meadows (This is England) directs this mock music documentary about Le Donk (Paddy Considine), a Nottingham based roadie working for The Arctic Monkeys and managing rapped Scor-zay-zee (playing himself). The film blends reality and fiction and is set and filmed in five days leading up to an Arctic Monkeys gig in Manchester. Le Donk has recently separated from his pregnant girlfriend (Olivia Coleman) and travels to Manchester with Scor-zay-zee for work and with the hope that he can somehow get the rapper on the bill at the gig.
Paddy Considine is brilliant as Le Donk and carries the entire movie. Most of his lines are improvised and the majority work, with hilarious results. He appears to be channelling David Brent and Alan Partridge at times but is thoroughly convincing. The film itself outstays its welcome after about 45 minutes. Despite a promising start the joke kind of gets old by the mid way point and although the film comes in at only 71 minutes, it feels long. I couldn't help feeling that it was more suited to TV and perhaps would have worked better as a 45 minute or one hour special. I'm glad that I didn't see it at the cinema myself.
The idea itself is interesting and well executed but it is unable to sustain an entire feature, even one as short as this (there are at least three musical montages). Unlike Spinal Tap for instance which has two very strong central characters and numerous side characters, Le Donk is pretty much here on his own. Scor-zay-zee provides the odd funny line but he is either not good enough or not used enough to provide much impact. The side story of Le Donk's pregnant ex added a few minutes to the run time but is perhaps more important for cementing the two actors relationship before they worked together on Considine's brilliant directorial debut Tyrannosaur.
Overall the film is sometimes entertaining and occasionally very funny but doesn't have enough about it for a successful feature film. You have to commend everyone involved though as they've managed to make an average film in just five days with a budget of £48,000 when many studio films fall flatter than this with budgets one hundred times that.
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