When I (as an independent blogger) originally reviewed Submarine back in April, I gave it a very respectable 8/10, ranking it amongst the cream of this year’s crop. Now, here’s Impact Film’s take on the DVD release of Richard Ayoade’s debut feature. Does the film live up to a second watch? Is it worth the retail price? Are there any titillating extras? To find out the answers to these questions, please continue reading below…
Submarine (2010, Richard Ayoade)
Submarine depicts the coming of age of Oliver Tate, a lonely, existentialist boy living in damp, wet and rainy Wales. He simultaneously balances the pressures of having his first girlfriend, his mum’s apparent infidelity and not being at all comfortable in his teenage skin, while also trying to carve out a self-fulfilling purpose for his own existence.
Superbly directed by Richard Ayoade, brilliantly scored by Alex Turner and expertly performed by the likes of Craig Roberts, Yasmin Page, Noah Taylor, Sally Hawkins and in particular Paddy Considine. A strong vintage/nostalgia theme runs throughout, exemplified by the occasional use of a post-production Super 8 camera look; it gives the film a pleasant hue and at least a soupçon of originality. The highlight of the piece has to be Considine’s character; his particular brand of zen spirituality is highly amusing, and his haircut even more so. Overall it’s a very solid debut feature. Will you want to watch it over and over again? Probably not, but it does have the legs for a second viewing if you already caught it in the cinema.
In all honesty, not a lot. Occasional moments of clunkiness are dotted throughout the film’s production, though this can be attributed to a small budget. Some of the retro-filtered montages go on longer than they should, making them feel a bit disjointed and subtracting from the engaging nature of the rest of the film. Oliver’s awareness that he exists within the framework of a movie may leave some feeling confused, but the majority of viewers will most likely let this slide.
There are some real crackers in here. Highlights include: Ben Stiller, who executively produced the film, delivering a humorous message to the cast & crew on a particularly rainy day’s filming in a bid to keep spirits up and prove he wasn’t just a name attached to the film’s publicity. There’s also a music video incarnation of one of the best songs of the soundtrack, Piledriver Waltz, which will satisfy fans of Alex Turner’s score. The highlight of the bonus content is an extended version of Paddy Considine’s brilliant presentation on light — “We don’t want to be… in the dark being fiddled with! I live for light, I don’t live for sex… and beers.” — which is still sidesplittingly funny. Accompanying the above are the usual deleted scenes and Q&A sessions that make for decent, though not essential, viewing. Overall, easily your money’s worth.
This DVD will be released in the UK on Monday, 1st August 2011.