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Kidulthood Special Edition (DVD)

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Genre: Drama / Director: Menhaj Huda / Actors: Ami Ameen, Red Madrell ... / DVD released 22 May, 2006 at Revolver Entertainment / Features of the DVD: PAL, Widescreen

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    16 Reviews
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      12.12.2009 14:40
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      Overall an excellent film 10/10

      INTRODUCTION:

      Kidulthood is a 2006 teen drama based film set in inner city london, the film follows the lives of 15 year olds exposed to material and behaviour associated with inner city areas, in some ways the film is a very accurate representation of a minority of UK teenagers lives.

      FILM INFORMATION:

      Certificate: 15
      Director: Menhaj Huda
      Written by: Noel Clarke
      Release: 2006
      Running time: 89 Minutes
      Country: UK
      Language: English
      Budget: £800,000

      BRIEF INTRODUCTION PLOT (NO MAJOR SPOILERS)

      The film starts at an inner city school in which the 'kidults' attend, it goes through the various 'kidults' with blake the rich kid giving out house party invites, Trevor operating a drill press, on an item we don't get to see...Alisa complains that she feels sick and so might not go to the party, however becky persuades her to go, we see sam the notorious hard man of the school spitting into katies hair and ordering her to tell him where his girlfriend claire is, then almost immediately the scene switches to jay who is seen fingering claire...

      After break time Trevor, Jay and moony are picked on by sam's group who make them pose for photos, when trevor stands up to them he is punched and kicked to the ground, jay has his sisters game boy stolen from him, then the scene switches to a classroom in witch katie is being violently beaten up by a girl in which trife comes in and defends her...

      we soon see that katie has had enough, and she hangs herself in her room, this ultimately leads to the school giving all students the day off which escalates into drugs, partying, violence, sex and a manor of other things....

      ISSUES THE FILM INVOLVES:

      The film touches on many controversial issues such as anti social behaviour, teenage sex & pregnancy, Drugs & Alcohol, Violence, Bullying, Suicide, Organized crime, Death, weapon crime.

      Many of the above issues are very real problems and behaviour showcased by some teenagers in real life which is echoed daily in newspapers and studies, and for this reason the film does have quite a lot of realism involved.

      TYPE OF LANGUAGE USED:

      The language used is a type of slang used by youths, stereotypically a type of person labelled as chavy often reflecting the appearence of youths from inner city areas.

      The constant use of words like Bruv,allow it, blud, skeen, safe etc may confuse older generations watching the film, however again it adds to the realism as i am sure we all know someone young who talks in this way.

      LIKE-ABILITIES OF THE FILM:

      I like that the film acts as a message to the youths who do live their lives like this that knife crime and bulling isn't worth it as it destroys lives and not only the victims, but your own and those of both families involved

      The soundtrack goes hand in hand with the film, both giving off the inner city, gritty feel to it which really sets the scene

      The acting was exceptional from all parts and they were really believable, all did well acting as 15 year olds as well seeing as most of the actors/actresses were a lot older than this.

      I liked how they focussed on triffe and how he really wanted to get away from all the violence and other negative activity that he was drawn into because of the area that he lived in.

      DIS-LIKE ABILITIES OF THE FILM:

      I Disliked how the entire film focussed on all of the negativity surrounding teenage behaviour, except from the situation of trife, however i do believe that this is realistic and that the end of the film acted as a shock, as if reflected in real life this is how some teens live their life and it won't change until something like this happens, so its not a real dis-like at the end of the day.

      MY PERSONAL VIEW OF THE FILM:

      Personally i had heard that this was a very good film from a lot of my friends and i hadn't got round to it, when i saw it in the shop for £3 i decided to get it...

      I thoroughly enjoyed the film, thought it was very well written and acted in and the storylines were realistic, it is a film which i have watched a few times since.

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        14.09.2009 19:28
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        Quite a tight little drama

        Kidulthood was released in 2006, I actually saw its sequel Adulthood ahead of it and whilst both work reasonably well on their own, it would definitely be recommended to watch them in order to be able to get more insight into Adulthood.

        Kidulthood follows the situation surround the lives of several schoolchildren, mischevious teenagers that are essentially quite chavvy. Some are however more extreme than others - that includes the thug, gangster wannabe Sam played excellently by Noel Clarke, this guy really has no redeeming features in the film and definitely leads the way in dislikeable characters as he embarks on a film full of bullying and under age sex.

        I would say that this film does contain one of the most releastic bullying scenes in a film to date starring girls and shows one of the characters "Trevor" trying to work out whether he wants to be a bad boy working for his gangster uncle or a good one with his girlfriend Alisha.

        This film is a rather bleak drama, there's a couple of brutal moments, not a lot of cheer but the occasional funny moment and I actually enjoyed it a fair bit. I wouldn't like to comment how realistic it is, having nothing to do with such circles!

        You can't help but feel that both this film and its sequel seem to jump on the bandwagon of the youth gangs and shooting news that plies the newspapers these days and therefore appeals to a relatively wide audience by appealing to both youths of today and elders who are perhaps keen for an insight into it (albeit one they might struggle to understand considering the usage of the odd Jamaican wannabe accent that seems to be sweeping the city at the moment)

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          07.09.2009 16:20
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          .

          Since I have just stated watching Adulthood, which is the followup to Kidulthood, it reminded me of this film, and I will say I did enjoy this film, but I know it won't appeal to everyone's taste.

          This film has been out for a few years now. It is a british film and it is basically a day in the life of 15 year olds in London, with a few older/younger members thown in. Near the start of the film we find that a 15 year old girl has commited suicide and the teenagers get to go home for the day. What follows is meant to be what it is like to be a teenager in London.

          Having never been to London myself, i'm sure sure how accurate the portrayal is. There is a mixture of White and Black teenagers, but what gets me is they all speak the same. I know that's not unusual, but it's a lot of slang like "blood", "innit", "cuz" and so on. The clothes the kids wear are kinda stereotype as well. They wear Hoodies and baggy jeans, baseball hats, and the girls are wearing loads of make up, and skimpy clothes.

          The main Character in the film is Sam, played by Noel Clarke. He is in Adulthood as well. A good enough kid, but ends up in the wrong crowd and ends up doing something at the end that probably he regrets. This follows through to Adulthood as well. All the actors in the film were unknown, and perhaps this is how we can see them for the kids they probably were.

          Soundtrack to this is alright. Mostly rap and ganster music, but it fits the film well.

          This was rated a 18, and feel that rating was justified. Throughout the film there is plenty of scenes of Sex, Oral Sex, Drug taking weather it be smoking drugs, or we see powder and tabs, Prostitution and Violence. I cannot comment on Adulthood that much as i've not finished watching it, but that is classed as a 15 and already i've seen drug use and Sex. Odd that you cannot legally have sex at 15, but you can watch it?

          I guess this goes on in society thesedays, but some people may find it a bit too real watching it. Not really my scene watching a middle aged man paying a school girl for some "mouth relief". yes, you don't see his bits, but you see what she is meant to be doing.

          I wouldn't buy this film, but I have watched it once and would watch again if I caught it on tv. It is an interesting portrayal of life in a run down part of London which is rife with gangs, violence, crime and drugs.

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          27.07.2009 15:13
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          A decent but deeply flawed film

          note: also appears on The Student Room in part

          Kidulthood is the latest attempt for British filmmakers to try and replicate the urban sense of dread so masterfully captured by filmmakers such as Spike Lee in films like Do The Right Thing. Sadly, so often they use American euphemisms that perhaps capture how much our children copy what they see on TV, but I don't think it's that smart a film - it's more a case of the writer trying to transpose these American narrative tropes onto the British environment, but sadly, the end result, whilst somewhat well intended, is a pretty hackneyed affair.

          The film's biggest flaw is that it's really difficult to feel sympathy for any of these characters - they mostly sound incredibly irritating, even "chavvish", have their self indulgent little dramas, and most often end up in a bind because of their own silly actions. All of the characters seem so self involved and divorced from any sense of real humanity that it's difficult to feel sorry for most of them, even when a couple of them end up dead before the film ends. Also, by its close, it relies on maudlin and overly sentimental dramatics, that might resonate with 15 year olds, but anyone with a perspective on the realities of life might just find it overbaked to the point of lunacy.

          Kidulthood introduces us to thoroughly dislikeable characters, and then unsuccessfully asks us to feel sympathy for them. As authentic as the acting may be (in replicating an incredibly irritating cross-section of society), I can't help but think that the narrative is very much overstated for the sake of dramatics. Nevertheless, it is a strangely compelling film in its own way.

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            05.06.2009 17:12
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            Falls short of it's aim of being true to life.

            I heard a lot about Kidulthood a couple of years ago and since then I've heard it talked about a lot, even called the London version of 'City of God', and repeatedly the true version of life in the city. I finally got to watch the DVD a few days ago and found it extremely disappointing. I felt that it was trying far too hard to be shocking, without even being particularly successful at that, and whilst it touches on many teenage issues it completely fails to look at any in detail.

            The film opens in the school playground and switches to the classroom where the brutal bullying of one girl Katie is shown who after school hangs herself at home. The rest of the film follows a 'One day in the life' format when there is a day off school because of the suicide.

            The problem with this format is that all the events of the film are meant to have taken place within a few hours and I felt that the writer was trying to take everything that commonly occurs in teenage life and squash it into one day. Whilst all the issues in themselves are real enough the result of them all together is to make the film a little unbelievable-the exact opposite of what it aims for.

            The film is trying to take a look at the realities of young adult life in rough areas and I appreicate the attempt at presenting things as they really are. The way the kids speak, the rough language, sex and violence are uncensured use street slang are true to real life-it reminded me of the way that we used to speak and act-but trying to sqeeze too many things into the film gave it a feeling of being melodramatic for me and it felt that sometimes the aim was more to take every bad thing that teenagers get up to and put it on the screen so that people who believe 15 year olds are still going to after school clubs and kissing with all their clothes on are shocked and appalled.

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            05.04.2009 11:36
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            I've lived the 'thug-life', I once accidentally stuck a drawing pin in someone's hand

            Kidulthood is the story of a bunch of inner city 'youfs' being naughty in da ghetto, shanking each other, and generally being pesky little oiks, innit blood, ya get me.

            It begins with shocking scenes of bullying in a school, led by the truly disgustingly nasty 'Sam' as played by Noel Clarke who apparently was in Doctor Who, but luckily I've never watched Dr Who so I can make no comparison. Later we will see that Sam is a central character in this, as the film weaves its merry way through thuggery, extreme violence, casual drug-taking, casual sex, casual wear, and casual crime, guns, drink, casual suicide, happy-slapping, bullying, racism and casual poverty.

            After having a chance to ruminate on this film it strikes me that they actually managed to pack into an hour and a half just about every inner-city/black stereotype you've ever imagined. As a result of this it's a seat-of-ya-pants extravaganza of plotting, which follows several threads and characters until it all comes together in the excellent, although perhaps predictable, finale.

            The language may be impenetable unless you have some knowledge of black slang, it literally is almost a patois at times. So if you are 45, drive a Jaguar, and live in Windsor you will probably watch five minutes of this, think it's in Swahili, search desparately for the English subtitles then turn it off and go back to tending the Dahlias.

            I'm not sure this film has a message, it seems to me like pure entertainment based loosely around themes of racism/inner-city troubles. I don't mind this, surely not every film has to deliver an intellectual message about its contents? What it certainly does is to make you think 'crikey this kind of malarkey really does go on doesn't it!'

            The acting overall is superb, I was convinced that these kids were 'real', even though most of them are probably luvvy-duvvy darlings from middle-class backgrounds straight from drama school. The main female character, Alisa played by Red Madrell was perhaps a little bland and lifeless compared to the highly animated male cast, but as she was meant to be the sensible one I guess I can't be too critical.

            I feel that I should warn the timid that there is one very disturbing scene where a character is forced to carve a letter into a chaps face with a knife. Don't let this put you off though because I have a feeling no one actually had their face cut and that in fact this was just a piece of acting using a latex overlay on the face and some kind of red substance made to look like blood. I could be wrong though.

            Overall this is an excellent piece of film making, it doesn't try to be too clever, it doesn't get all obscure and arty and any cinematograhpic or camera tricky is well placed and not overused. It is impossible to be bored by this film and it does not overstay its welcome.

            I'll leave you with some Dizzee Rascal lyrics to ponder, as featured in the soundtrack:

            "I talk tough cause life's been rough
            gritty, shitty life ain't been to pretty far from buff
            so I'm off to the elegant stuff"

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              02.02.2009 20:55
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              Great film

              Kidulthood is the first film by Noel Clarke (Mickey in Doctor Who), who both stars in and wrote the film. The film stars Noel Clarke, Aml Ameen, Adam Deacon and Jaime Winstone, alongside others in a story of teenage life in London.

              The film focuses on the subject of the day to day struggles of one 15 year old boy, Trife. Torn between his mates, the girl he loves, his dangerous uncle and other teenage problems, he must choose whether to live his life in the way he thinks is right, or the way he knows. After the tragedy of a schoolmates suicide, the gang are left with a day off school and a paty to attend later that evening. However, the days events all build up to a dramatic ending and for the people involved their lives will never be the same again.

              This is a powerful film about the 'kids of today' living in a world where violence, drugs and money rule. Great performances from such a young cast, and a brilliant debut film for writer Noel Clarke.

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              30.11.2008 09:18
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              Excellent film from director Huda and writer Clarke

              There have been many praiseworthy and 'cult' British films made over the years, and none will be praised as much as Kidulthood, a shocking and disturbing portrayal of what is supposed life on the streets of London for a group of 15 year olds who become victims to a thug over the course of a day and a few choice encounters and events.

              Kidulthood is the brainchild of Noel Clarke, probably best known as Mickey in the more recent Doctor Who series with Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant, but fast becoming a well known name off screen, too, writing the script for Kidulthood as well as writing and directing its sequel, conveniently and aptly entitled Adulthood. Noel Clarke also plays Sam, here in Kidulthood, a bully and local thug used to getting his own way, whom Clarke portrays with vigour very convincing. Sam runs across a couple of 15 year olds keen to impress their friends and enemies alike and very socially aware of the impact of their every move.

              Love and status play a big part in the film, as Sam feels Trife (Aml Ameen) is undermining him and everything he stands for, and is having none of it. Director Menhaj Huda does a good job with Clarke's script and a low budget, filming actively around the streets and aiming the film at a demograph of young people living in and around the more deprived areas of London and having to deal with everything life throws at them. There are good performances from Red Madrell, Femi Oyeniran and Adam Deacon as Alisa, Moony and Jay, Trife's friends, and you get the feeling of complete angst and helplessness on more than one occasion with the unknown cast, showing how powerful or close to the bone the acting actually is.

              It is the message sent across from Clarke's pen that really makes this a moving film. The notion of doing the right thing rarely enters the heads of these youngsters, and events come at a difficult time for the 15 year olds, while older bully Sam lets anger, rage and deprivation fuel his quest for getting his own back. As events spiral to a dramatic conclusion, I was left open mouthed and thoroughly moved by many impressive and powerful performances all round in front of and behind the camera.

              The soundtrack was also very effective in further emphasising the feelings of the cast, particularly the menace exuded by Sam, and it is the excellent but unknown cast and performers in the film and on the soundtrack that transferred a very raw feel onto our screens, and this is what I believe makes the film seem to real. There were no big names getting a good role on here, only believable casting was used, and this is what makes the film so good and believable.

              Critics acclaimed the film as cult as soon as it came out, and commercially the response has been to give the impression Clarke and Huda have got it right. With films such as these being made, and some of the better violent dramas around, it is easy to see that British film and cinema is not in decline - it's just not as frivolous as some other countries can be, and makes its point with every film.

              Kidulthood is well worth a watch, and I highly recommend it. However, it does focus very much on violence and swearing, with some scenes of a sexual nature creeping in as well, so if you are put off by a 'yob' culture and by excessive violence and force, then you're not going to like this. It's worth noting that although this is a work of fiction, many have described it as close to home as well as many saying it is an exaggerated portrayal of what happens. My personal preference is that I never want to find out - I'm quite happy watching some cinematic quality like this rather than risking living it. Kidulthood is currently available from amazon.co.uk for £9.98, but if you have a look around you'll probably be able to get it for cheaper.

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                06.10.2008 16:57
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                great film if you understand gangster language

                Menhaj Huda Film tells the story of 15 year old Trife growing up in urban london and his day to day business. when given the day off school due to the suicide of a classmate, Trife gets caught up between friends, the girl he loves and his prestigious uncle all in such a short period of time.

                Trife must chose the path he knows and the life of guns, drugs, sex and violence that he now knows all too well.

                at the time where sex was currency, drugs are easy and violence is their way of life, trouble is always around every corner.

                Trife ends up screwing about with the wrong people and with no-one by his side, suffers the consequences.

                DVD includes special features of:

                directors commentary
                the making of
                behind the scenes
                after party footage
                bonus tracks and picture gallery
                bonus music video
                theatrical trailer
                adulthood trailer
                kidulthood soundtrack

                i paid £13 in HMV for the collectors edition with all the special features above. definately worth watching and a great intro to adulthood (2007)

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                  26.08.2008 15:45
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                  show this to teenagers and parents

                  Before adult hood comes kidulthood,This movie is about a group of trouble 15year olds growing up in west London.
                  It is a very interesting movie because it can be taken really offensively because of some inappropriate scenes and dirty foul mouthed kids also the dirty scenes are really disgusting because they can show what kids do these days for drugs , fame and money. This movie could be taken offense by many parents and even teenagers, But the truth has to be told and the director (Menhaj Huda does a great way of bringing the message across to us.
                  One downside to the movie was that there is not a lot of different characters that could have been used and lots of people in society could have been involved.
                  In the movie you will be shown a day in the life of a group of 15year olds who do some very inappropriate and ruthless things to other teenagers and kids.
                  Te acting is truthful and good to watch and is quite realistic because that is the exact way my brother acts when he is on the street but when he gets home he respects his mother.
                  A great movie to show to other teenagers and parent because it can show them that small things make a huge difference and how West London is really like.
                  Thank you and please read my other reviews at mehmoou1001.

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                    20.07.2008 15:32
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                    Worth watching but i wouldn't buy it

                    Kidulthood a film showing the nasty side of growing up in west london. The film generated huge hype when it came out. Those of you may have seen Noel Clarke in the role of Micky in dr who, the character he plays in this is far from that.

                    Synopsis - The film is based around different groups of teenagers, you have the typical street gangster kids who are more for show than anything, then you have Clakes character, the older kid somewhat of a bully who threatens many people in the film, and then you have a group of girls one of whom is dealing with the stress of teen pregnancy.
                    If the film is how teenagers are sposed to act in london then it certainly isnt a good image but as films go this isnt that bad. Like many other great films all the characters storys are intertwined to a climax at the end, somewhat an anit-climax as the ending is really open to interpretation, hopefully its sequal Adulthood will explain some of this but i have yet to see that film

                    Overall Kidulthood is a great film, not one to watch with your parents as there is a lot of swearing and personally an over use of drug references i mean come on i dont think any teenager would be doing coke at lunch and weed and speed its ludicrus. Anyhow this film is worth a watch.

                    7/10

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                      15.06.2008 13:22
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                      Half decent film which could have been better.

                      This is a gritty British film that depicts the life of a group of young teenagers growing up in a largely deprived area of West London. It is not exactly a great advert for British youth nor something the Olympic Organising Committee will be keen to show the OCC when they visit but it was an entertaining film overall which is only let down by a really predictable ending that actually spolit the whole film for me. Without giving it away the ending was so predictable and showed a complete lack of imagination in my opinion that it just smacks of lazy script writing.

                      The cast is all drawn from young British actors and certainly they go to town on the whole street ghetto language, there is lots of swearing, nudity and some very violent scenes as well. The whole film is backed up by a pretty good soundtrack as well.

                      Cast List

                      Aml Ameen ... Trife
                      Red Madrell ... Alisa
                      Noel Clarke ... Sam
                      Jaime Winstone ... Becky
                      Adam Deacon ... Jay
                      Femi Oyeniran ... Moony
                      David Ajala ... Desmond
                      Richard Angol ... Short Dred
                      Tom Burroughs ... Hamish
                      Sam Callis ... Security Guard
                      Stephen Da Costa ... Rupert
                      Toby Dantzic ... Shop Assistant

                      All of the action in the film is supposed to depict a single day in the lives of the young people and all of them have their own issues including pregnancy and casual sex with each others partners. Others are trying to avoid falling into the drug dealing gangster life that sucks in so many others.

                      How realistic this film is can be hard to guage, certainly with the reported knife and gun crime amongst young people in London and other cities some of the plot rings true, all the time you can see poverty and the need for money and the respect it brings as being a constant theme.

                      If they could have come up with a more original ending I would have probably given this more than three stars but in the end that was all it was worth.

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                        24.05.2008 20:26
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                        The first of Noel Clarke's "Hood" movies

                        Kidulthood was hyped as a true view of the life of a teenager in London in the early 2000's. If this is the case I have to ask why so many people live in London, it's a view of London I'm sure to some extent exists but a true view or realistic which was the other word used? Maybe if you're a scumbag, and your family are total scum then yes true view and realistic might be appropriate wording. But lets not get off on the wrong foot here, Kidulthood is not a bad film, but if your looking for realism then perhaps Stargate is closer to the truth.

                        The movie shot on a very small budget revolves around a series of teens from different years at an inner London senior school (or whatever term they like to be referred to nowadays). The standard age of these teens is 15, and the story follows in detail three young lads, two young girls one of whom is pregnant and finally a slightly older boy and his sexually ambivalent girlfriend who I affectionately referred to as Bike as I watched the movie. I won't lie and say I understood the characters, although visually I knew who each character when I heard the character name I had no clues at to whom they were referring too. One thing I did know is that Noel Clarke who plays the dozy Mickey in Doctor Who stars as Sam. Sam is the guy at school you do your best to avoid, he is head of his year but in reality is a total thug. The issue I have here is that I cannot picture Noel Clarke as anything else than dozy Mickey, worse still when you see a close up of him I'm reminded of the episode in which Mickey was replaced by a plastic impostor. I'm not having a go at his acting, but unfortunately he will need to really step out of the box to be taken seriously by myself and no doubt a large audience that viewed this movie. Sam's girlfriend Claire is a slag; let's not beat about the bush, as the movie opens she is being fingered by a boy in a busy playground, she later without any issues gets down for sex with a boy with two people viewing. Unfortunately while I knock the realism of the movie I'm sure that to some extent all of us encountered such a girl when we were at school, with maybe slightly better morals. In her heart she is probably a nice girl, but her mother does certainly not think so. Claire's mothers top piece of advice "use a condom".

                        Two girls are focused one of who has got pregnant by one of a gang of three but does not seem to want to inform him of events. The two girls decide to get over her woes that they need to go out to a party, to do this they need some new clothes, but they have no money. How do these two girls earn money? Shoplifting perhaps? No they head off to some weird blokes house for hand jobs and blow jobs, this gives them the reward of cash to spend on Oxford Street. One of the two girls then goes on to have sex with a sleezy pervert called Mark (best known as Ronny Ferreira from Eastenders) whose first appearance on screen sees him bounce in the room wearing a pair of skin tight briefs, he then tries to hit on the pregnant girl saying "I've never done a pregga". At this point the dreaded C word is bounded about and know I don't mean Cancer. Ronny, I mean Mark then takes the other girl off for sex having been rejected by the pregnant girl. This girl has already sucked off one guy and had sex with him in less than an hour, is this the idea of a normal British teenager in London? I Hope not!

                        Sex is the main focus of this picture next to crime, and personally I suspect that this movie has been doing the rounds at school as some sort of wank movie, sorry for the harsh language but it's the image the movie gives you. It's meant to appeal to adults but sort of made for kids, the question for me is whether the movie is meant to act as prevention or to encourage this sort of activity? The crime element of the movie seems to focus around the three boys all of whom seem to have a chip on their shoulder about being an "ethnic minority" even though realistically one of the three is not. On this basis they hang around the streets in baseball caps and hoodies making lives miserable. One of these lads who I thought was called Tom or Thomas throughout the movie (but I was wrong) has made a girl pregnant; and somehow manages to get dragged into a world of crime on the back of this. He rejects this world of crime, after being forced to cut a big C out of the side of someone's face. He is however torn between his loyalties which puts a certain depth to the movie.

                        The main story that surrounds Kidulthood is the revenge that Sam plans to exact of the three boys for firstly forcing there way into his home, for having sex with his girlfriend and finally for pushing his mother over. Until Sam has exacted his revenge there will be no rest.

                        Kidulthood is really entertaining viewing from a perspective, but it far from real, or at least the real world I saw of life in London and I certainly never lived anywhere affluent. The characters within the movie are pretty well laid out for a budget film; you get a feel for all of them regardless of how unrealistic the characters may be.

                        I would certainly recommend watching Kidulthood, it's a clever little film. However I'm not too sure about the £7.99 investment which seems to be the average price online.

                        The sequel Adulthood is in cinemas on the 30th of June

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                          30.04.2007 11:55
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                          Don't have nightmares.

                          "Now go straight to your room," is a line I'm sure none of the characters in the sensational, Kidulthood, have heard before. When I first discovered Kidulthood it was being advertised as being on the cinema with short flashes of advertisements here and there, obviously because of the budget many small British films see themselves on. For what I can remember as being the first time I have ever seen a film that caters to the origins of urban/chav life in London, it was definitly going to be a talking point in the group of friends I carry myself with. Checking the cinema listings neither of my local cinemas (Cineworld and Vue) were showing Kidulthood, apparently because Cambridge doesn't have a market for this sort of film - rather we're all smug, well educated, university students who would rather watch Hugh Grant in a movie that almost feels like a repeat of his previous.

                          There would be no Hugh Grant when I finally got to see what would apparently be one of the grittest films of the year, perhaps the lesser known the cast the better. A friend of mine first obtained this film illegally over the internet, like seems to be so easy to do these days - especially as this was at a time when YouTube had not been bought out by Google and still contained a hell of a lot of copyrighted material. I on the other hand would wait, not just because my internet connection is slow, but because another friend picked it up on DVD and I was happy to let him offer it to me for borrowing. Upon finishing the film I was shocked, and it was just yesterday I received my own copy using HMV vouchers and gave it my second watch.

                          As I touched on, the cast is full of names I had never heard of. The leader character, Trife, is played by Aml Ameen. It was only on watching it yesterday that I noticed Nicholas Hoult featured in the film, better known as the boy out of 'About A Boy' and now for his role as the lead in E4 teen drama, Skins. Hoult does not have such a big a role in Kidulthood as some of his projects would make you think, in fact he only serves as a geeky rich boy who is organising the big Friday night party. Whilst on the topic of Skins, when watching Kidulthood again I definitly found comparisons between the two in that Skins tries to be a lot like Kidulthood, perhaps just a toned down version suitable for TV spanned over many episodes.

                          Trife is very much the leader of his small group of friends, that also includes Jay (Adam Deacon) and Moony (Femi Oyeniran). Jay is the white guy of the three, perhaps earning him a tag as 'whigga' - due to his flat peaked cap and urban speak. Not afraid of anything Jay will throw his fists and words in where ever he feels the need to. Moony on the other hand is perhaps an opposite of the stereotype 'black guy so he must be dangerous' in that he proves shy when it comes to fighting, although if it is a situation he can escape from easily he won't let it go by without saying his peice and keeping his reputation. It's quite funny to see a character like Moony in a film, because he is a character you would expect to see in real life - a group of 'hard' friends, not afraid of fighting, and then the more quiet wanting to keep his head down type.

                          So if Moony is realistic, what else is? Well lets start with the knives culture that is ever so slightly touched on in Kidulthood. The youth are not afraid to carry round knives in this day and age - this maybe a bit stereotypical of me to say when reviewing a film that is supposed to break down stereotypes - but so I hear that knife culture is even more prominent in the more ran down areas of London, where this film is set. Moony does pull out a knife on more than one occassion in this film, but would he really use it?

                          Also comes the topic of teenage pregnancy. Trife's ex-girlfriend, Alisa (Red Madrell), is only 15 and yet she finds herself with the issue of perhaps being a mother. Whether or not Alisa realises what is involved with bringing up a child is up for debate, but a will she/won't she keep it struggle features in the film. After Sam (Noel Clarke) tells Trife he slept with Alisa, Trife wants nothing to do with Alisa and a baby he can't even be sure is his. Alisa finds herself being drawn to drugs, alcohol and violence against herself when she is in a mood that she doesn't want a baby, but finds herself looking at childrens clothes when she is in the mood to keep it. Is what was done with the teenage pregnancy storyline realistic? Yes, and I can think of two young mothers I know personally off the top of my head, so it's not unusual in this day and age.

                          Now for the drugs and sex. Alisa finds herself with access to the drugs that could potentially harm her unborn child through her 'bestfriend' Becky (Jaime Winstone). Becky takes Alisa to her sleazy friend she met at a rave, and asks him for some free canabis - and some cocaine and ecstacy if it's not a problem. Becky's told the coke and E's (no, not exceptional ratings, the other sort) won't come for free, but who needs money? Becky pays off her dealer by getting down on her hands and knees, whilst Alisa pays her part by masturbating another guy. Then with a big party coming up later that day, Alisa and Becky both want new outfits so Becky pretty much prostitutes herself to another strange man (he was part of the Asian family that left Eastenders a couple of years back, can't think of his name) and that means they have £300 to spend on clothes. Whilst I don't know anyone that has personally used sex as a way to get free drugs, hassling older men for money like Becky does is not something I haven't seen. When I was a couple of years younger there was a goal I knew, under the age of 16, who had a friend in his 20's. That friend would give this girl money, for God knows what reason. She would never tell me. I'm not trying to make it sound like I live in some sort of ghetto, because I clearly don't and have been brought up well, but I live in Cambridge - so whether or not things go to the extreme in London is a subject I'm not privy to.

                          Shouldn't this kids be in school you ask? Well yes they should, but because the day before a member of their year committed suicide they have been given the deal off. This all develops in the first scene, and it is pretty shocking if you don't know it's coming. This girl, Katie, had been bullied to take her own life after being attacked in school and being forced to do their coursework. An older boy Sam (as I mentioned earlier is played by Clarke, who also worked on writing the film and has written on 'Dr Who') has also been hassling Katie, and after she leaves a suicide note name checking Sam, it could lead to trouble for Sam. In the film you do wonder if Sam will gets what coming to him, as he bullies and fights the younger characters. Trife is especially mortified by the suicide, afterall Katie was a girl he'd 'pressed'.

                          Pressed being code for slept with, and Kidulthood also features other teminology popular nowadays. Bare, tingz, tst, among a few you'll hear said by a character, whether they be black or white. Overall I think it's a very realistic film except for the fact that not ALL this would happen in one day, they've made the girls seem really slutty and evil (for those who hated Jade in Celebrity Big Brother, she may appear as an angel compared to some of these) and also the violence in the film has been made more common and agressive for the shock factor. Whilst the excuse for publishing this film maybe that it's supposed to educate parents, I'm sure most parents will not even watch this film and it is more of a film for teenagers to watch and see how they can push the boundaries of their exiestence. I'm sure the youth that comes from the sort of background as Kidulthood would really appreciate this film, where perhaps youth that look at the Kidulthood soundtrack and laugh wouldn't. Also I wouldn't show this film to your grandparents, because they may take it all TOO literally and get scared to leave the house.

                          Most of the characters in Kidulthood aren't bad people, as is well illustrated in scenes throughout the film. I will not go into the scenes any further because I've already touched on a lot of storylines, but there is a lot more to experience. Everything is well put together from the minute it starts to the 91st minute it ends in, but remember you shouldn't be watching it unless you are over the age of 15. There are also some laughs in there along the way, so try not to watch the whole film with a straight face. This is a world constantly evolving, and as long as the KiDULTHOOD generation doesn't get too much worse, I think we should be ok.

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                            30.08.2006 21:11
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                            I liked this film because it grabbed my attention the whole way through

                            This film is about teenagers on the verge of becoming adults, set in London it provides an insight into many aspects of teenage life of which most adults are unaware.The storyline follows quite a few different plots and then ties everything in together at the end.With some really good soundtracks from Bands like the streets its one of those films that makes the hair stand up on your arms.Lots of sexual scenes in this film which may be a bit disturbing to parents as the age group depicted are all about 14/15.Get ready to blub at the end of the film as not a happy ending.

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                          • Product Details

                            When a bullied schoolgirl commits suicide, her classmates are given the day off. What transpires in the next 24 hours is a snapshot of the perilous world that today’s British teenagers inhabit.

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