CINEMA NIGHT: MOON DOGS
An anarchic, funny, sexy coming-of-age movie, following two teenage step brothers on a road trip across Scotland & the enigmatic girl who comes between them.
Familiar-sounding ingredients come to together in a surprisingly delightful manner in this deft blend of mismatched-buddy road movie, coming-of-age comedy and youthful love triangle. This debut big-screen feature of established TV director Philip John (Being Human, Downton Abbey, Outlander) is also the third and best produced screenplay from writing duo Derek Boyle and Raymond Friel, rather belatedly following their 2004 Orlando Bloom starrer The Calcium Kid and 2007’s Botched
Step brothers Michael (Jack Parry Jones) and Thor (Christy O’Donnell) speak with different accents, but they might as well have come from different planets. Relatively conventional Michael grew up in Wales with his mother Anne (Claire Cage). Now he’s living in the Scottish isle of Shetland with Anne’s new partner Maurice (Jamie Sives). Maurice’s son Thor also comes as part of the package – an unguessable space cadet who noodles in his bedroom with his experimental indie folk music. Father and son have become distant, and Maurice is particularly despondent over Thor’s unwillingness to celebrate their Viking heritage, or participate in the upcoming Up Helly Aa Viking festivities on Shetland.
The storyline contrives to give both step-brothers a reason to hit the road together to Glasgow. Michael, who flunked his A-levels (Thor’s fault), is tracking down his hometown girlfriend Suzy (Kate Bracken) to a university life that has very evidently expanded her dating horizons. Thor wants to meet the mother (Shauna Macdonald) who walked out on him when he was a baby.
The unlikely duo becomes a trio when the boys gatecrash a wedding in Orkney, exiting with Irish waitress Caitlin (Tara Lee), who comes along for the ride. Smart, capable, impulsive, sexually curious, she has just the right energy to bring both brothers out of their shells. Seductions follow, in funny scenes that encompass simultaneous groping of both boys, recycled bath water and – a moderate discourtesy to the trucker who is giving Michael and Caitlin a lift – sex in the sleeping area tucked right behind the driver.
Certificate Cert 15, run time 1 hour 33 minutes
Start time 7:30pm, tickets £5 (under 18s £3) at the door