London to Brighton
It’s 3:07am and two girls burst into a run down London toilet. Joanne is crying her eyes out and her clothing is ripped. Kelly’s face is bruised and starting to swell. Duncan Allen lies in his bathroom bleeding to death. Duncan’s son, Stuart, has found his father and wants answers. Derek, Kelly’s pimp, needs to find Kelly or it will be him who pays. Kelly and Joanne need to get through the next 24 hours alive… Such is the premise to this raw and gritty directional debut by Paul Andrew Williams.
London to Brighton isn’t an easy film to watch, the subject matter is disturbing to say the least with the central focus being that of forced child prostitution. A parallel theme is that of child abuse in it’s many forms that drives the characters to be where they are when the story begins. The storyline slowly reveals itself through the progression of the movie, utilising flashbacks to illuminate the movies and situations.
Quality wise the movie has been done on a budget and it shows in places, mainly in the quality of the image and occasionally in the acting. For the most part however, the un-tapped acting talent lends an authentic edge to the movie, especially that of Kelly and Joanne. The rough look and feel of the film help add to the atmosphere and help with the social commentary that one can’t help but think about whilst watching.
Entertainment wise, the movie does have a well managed pace, and for the most part keeps you guessing as to what is going to happen. But it’s not really a movie that you’re going to rave about to your workmates; it’s not a feel good night in with a bowl of popcorn. It will however challenge you to think about issues that our fragmented society would rather ignore and pretend don’t happen.
Food for thought (spoilers):
Evil raises it’s ugly head throughout this movie, from the rich sexual predator who gets people to find 12 year old girls for his pleasure, to the pimp who forces one of his girls to find a 12 year old street kid to sell. This is the ugly reality of life for street children around the world, forced by desperation to sell their bodies just to survive. But all is not lost as the prostitute who finds the 12 year old also becomes her saviour and mother figure, determined to right her wrong by looking after her, and trying to keep her alive for the duration of the movie. By the end of the movie she succeeds in her mission and gives Joanne a new opportunity at life, but weather she has found redemption for herself is left up to the audience to decide.
# Deleted scenes
# Georgia Groom audition
# Behind the scenes featrurette
# Director’s commentary
If you have the stomach, I would recommend that you watch the deleted scenes as it sheds more light on the movies central scene, and gives another reason for the actions of the central characters.
Warning: This is a film intended for mature audiences and my not be suitable for all 18 year olds. We recommend discussing the themes of this movie after watching.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read.
Rating: R18 – Contains Violence, Sexual Themes & Content That May Disturb.
Duration: 85 mins.
Director: Paul Andrew Williams.
Actors: Nathan Constance, Johnny Harris, Georgia Groome, Sam Spruell, Alexander Morton, Lorraine Stanley.
Release Date: Available now.