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Son of Rambow


Stars: Bill Milner, Will Poulter, Jessica Stevenson, Jules Sitruk, Neil Dudgeon, Eric Sykes

Director: Garth Jennings

A likeable film about kids that (apart, we hope, from a drug-fuelled sixth-form common room) probably paints a truer picture of school life than many you've seen.

Ten-year-old Will (Milner) draws stories in pictures in a vast sketchbook, but feels constricted by his family life as a member of the Plymouth Brethren - although many parents might find it a plus that he's not allowed to watch TV. Through chance he becomes associated with the school tearaway, Lee (Poulter) - whom he calls Leecarter - and becomes the latter's stunt star in a film they start making about the son of their hero - movie icon Rambo.

A slight picture of some charm, this has cute boy actors - Milner looks like a younger Freddie Highmore - plus structure and storytelling as ramshackle as the kids' home movie. As a portrait of boys from the opposite ends of the social scale bonding, it doesn't quite convince, any more than the late conversion of Lee's older brother; but lots of gentle chuckles ensure entertainment most of the way.

Alan Frank

UK 2007. UK Distributor: Optimum. Duboicolor/Technicolor.
96 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 12A.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 1, Swearing 0.

Review date: 01 Apr 2008