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One For The Road

3

So Shane Meadows is the only auteur in Nottingham, eh? Apparently not - - just take a look at this ink-black farce from writer/director Chris Cooke.

It revolves around four drunk drivers attending an alcohol-management course. The nominal hero is Jimmy (Greg Chisholm), a young wannabe who eyes the course as "the networking opportunity of a lifetime". Not so. In fact, his ambitions come a cropper when he joins a struggling salesman (Rupert Procter) and a pothead cabbie (Mark Devenport) in a scheme to fleece a property developer (Hywel Bennett).

Shot on DV and plumbing the same rich depths of comic despair as The Office, Cooke's debut feature is more a collection of sketches than a complete piece. Even so, One For The Road is a sharp, well-acted yarn that bears out Oscar Wilde's belief that work is the curse of the drinking classes. It's just a shame that the climactic wallow in violence leaves a nasty taste in the mouth.

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