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Young Offenders Review


It's rare to have the words "Breath of fresh air" associated with Irish film. Not to say that the Irish film industry is a pile of junk. Far from it. But alot of the time Irish movies are steeped in misery, zombies and more misery.
Peter Foott's Young Offenders is genuinely something different. In fact, the movie is so refreshing, it's genuinely one of the best Irish movies for years!

Set around a massive, 440 million euro cocaine haul in 2007 in West Cork, two teenagers, Jock and Conor set off on a road trip to claim a bale of coke worth 7 million! Coupled with a bike obsessed Garda (a Cop for our american readers), a local psycho and an alcoholic farmer as well as a nail gun wielding drug dealer, this is quite the road trip.

Not since Neil Jordan's Ondine has there been a better advertisement for West Cork. Young Offenders is beautifully shot. Stunning drone style footage, combined with some wonderful on the ground cinematography showcases one of the most beautiful pieces of coastline in the world.

As good as things look, it's nothing without a story and decent performances to carry it over the line. Newcomers Chris Walley and Alex Murphy are the best thing here. They have an insane chemistry and bounce off each other like actors at the peak of their career. Given this is their first feature, the future is going to be huge for these guys. The rest of the cast are decent enough as well with Hilary Rose and Pascal Scott being particularly likeable. While PJ Gallagher's nail gun wielding character is ok, the performance is a bit contrived and dragged out in places.  It's just a bit too surreal, in comparison to the rest of the movie.

The story for the best part is decent, if not a bit predictable, with a few scenes feeling like their just in their to fatten up the running time a bit. But it's a minor gripe and doesn't detract from the overall movie. While the Cork humour may get lost on some audiences, Young Offenders is a hilarious comedy with a huge heart which it wears well and truly on it's sleeve. Whatever preconceived notions you might have about Irish film, forget them. You need to see this!

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The Movie Bit: Young Offenders Review
Young Offenders Review
The Movie Bit
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