Hallam Foe

Movie Review by Neils Hesse

Starring: Jamie Bell, Sophia Myles, Claire Forlani, Ciaran Hinds, Jamie Sives
Director: David Mackenzie

Rooftops, tree houses, suspected murder, dishwashing and what we used to call obsession but now referred to as stalking or to be a bit more arty – tarty voyeurism!

A boy nearing adulthood is obsessed with the death of his mother, which leads him on a journey of mental and sexual self-discovery amidst the rooftops of Glasgow, Scotland, where he meets a woman who coincidentally turns out to be an exact copy of his dead mother! Suffice to say that with comments from his morally questionable step-mother like, “So did you enjoy fucking Mummy?”, his obsession with his darling mummy’s lookalike proves to be just one of this young man’s many issues who, so shocked by his mummy’s death, has withdrawn into watching people from a distance as a way of avoiding any real intimacy. He finally gets answers even though they turn out to be not at all what he so passionately believed he would get.

Director David Mackenzie seems to have a knack for filming very raw and visceral sex scenes as he did in his acclaimed YOUNG ADAM. He definitely doesn’t shirk away from showing the rough animal side of sex here. Still he achieves much more of a linear progression in this film with his central character’s development, allowing much more time for the audience to connect with his character’s journey.

Jamie Bell (Hallam) gives a beautiful performance effortlessly combining rage, vulnerability, questionable obsessions and undeniable charm. Sophia Myles acquits herself amazingly here displaying a sweet almost angelic character who proves to be much more than meets the eye. Stand out scenes include a hilariously disgruntled senior kitchen porter brilliantly played by Maurice Roëves telling Hallam that he has killed a man before in a very matter a fact way – absolutely hilarious!

HALLAM FOE is and intriguing mix of comedy, drama, twisted voyeurism and very questionable sexual obsessions!

Definitely worth a look.

4 out of 6 stars

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