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Stars: Colm Meaney, Colin Morgan, Milka Ahlroth

Director: Darragh Byrne

Though it takes a while to get started, this quietly effective drama strikes few wrong notes thereafter. Middle-aged Fred (Meaney) lives in his automobile in a Dublin car park, trying but failing to claim benefit. The details of Fred's life in his car are skilfully and most persuasively sketched in.

Fellow car-dweller on the other side of the lot is the much younger Cathal - pronounced Carl (Morgan, TV's Merlin). Although Cathal is an addict, the two men strike up an unlikely friendship. Cathal introduces Fred to the delights of the local swimming pool, where he meets synchronised swimmer and piano teacher Juliana (Ahlroth).

Later, Fred comes to Cathal's rescue when he is being beaten up by drug dealers to whom he owed several hundred euros. Such uneasy tranquillity, alas, cannot last.

Meaney and Morgan are totally into their characters here, and always believable; likewise the dialogue, minimal though it is. And there's nice clear photography by John Conroy, even if the (unspecified) colour stock looks a bit washed out. This will win few awards and attract fewer punters, but if crops on DVD for a few quid, it's well worth snapping up.

David Quinlan

Ireland/Finland 2010. UK Distributor: Element Pictures. Colour.
94 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 2, Swearing 2.

Review date: 20 Nov 2011