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Film Review: Future Cult Hit in Fun B-Movie ‘Attack the Block’

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CHICAGO – Jon Favreau’s “Cowboys & Aliens” opens today and is guaranteed to make millions more at the international box office than Joe Cornish’s “Attack the Block.” That’s the bad news. The good news is that I can also guarantee you that history will regard the smaller film as the significantly better one. The line for this future cult hit starts here. Get in it before your friends tell you to.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

Inspired by ‘70s films like “Assault on Precinct 13” and “The Warriors,” “Attack the Block” has already garnered a huge following since it premiered stateside at the South by Southwest Festival and knocked audiences on their asses. The buzz coming out of Austin was so deafening that I think it may ultimately hurt the film a little bit in that it’s not as flawless as the hype might lead you to believe. It’s very entertaining and I look forward to what its talented director and future superstar of a lead actor do next but it’s also inconsistent to the point of frustration. This is a solid B-movie that will find a loyal audience willing to pretend it’s a solid-A.

StarRead Brian Tallerico’s full review of “Attack the Block” in our reviews section.

And I don’t really blame them. While I have some issues with “Attack the Block” that I’ll get to, it’s somewhat cynical to come down on a low-budget passion project when there are so many soulless blockbuster machines making even bigger mistakes. This is a movie made by people who love movies, not merely those looking to market a shiny new toy. While that love can get a bit unfocused, it’s refreshing to see it’s alive and well in a genre that’s been particularly bereft of it, especially on the blockbuster level.

“Attack the Block” takes place on one long night in a council estate in South London. The film starts with a nurse named Sam (Jodie Whittaker) being mugged by a group of teenagers named Pest (Alex Esmail), Dennis (Franz Drameh), Jerome (Leeon Jones), Biggz (Simon Howard), and Moses (John Boyega). The victim and her assaulters are interrupted by a far-more-significant threat when something crashes into a nearby car. The boys attack the alien creature, chasing it through the neighborhood and eventually killing it. They carry their trophy through the corner of London and eventually show it off to a drug dealer named Ron (Nick Frost), his slimy client named Brewis (Luke Treadaway), and the deadly gangster Hi-Hatz (Jumayn Hunter).

“Attack the Block” stars John Boyega, Jodie Whittaker, Alex Esmail, Franz Drameh, Leeon Jones, Simon Howard, Luke Treadaway and Nick Frost. It was written and directed by Joe Cornish. It was released in Chicago on July 29, 2011. The film is showing at AMC River East 21 in downtown Chicago.

Attack the Block
Attack the Block
Photo credit: Screen Gems

Anonymous's picture

“Attack the block” is

Attack the block” is new and interesting movie. The idea is unique and the actors are very good. Don’t miss it, I didn’t.

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