Faintheart (12A)

Film image

The ViewLondon Review

StarStarStarNo StarNo Star
Review byMatthew Turner27/06/2008

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 90 mins

Watchable, by-the-numbers romantic comedy with a few decent gags and a strong performance from Eddie Marsan.

What's it all about?
Largely developed by users of MySpace as part of an online competition, Faintheart is directed by Vito Rocco and stars Eddie Marsan as Richard, a homestore employee with a nerdy passion for Viking re-enactments. However, when his latest battle causes him to be late for his father-in-law's funeral (and turn up in chain mail), his long suffering wife Cath (Jessica Hynes) realises she's had enough and begins a trial separation. Richard is convinced he can win Cath back, but he hasn't reckoned on the attentions of slimy PE teacher Gary (Paul Nicholls), who's also getting closer to Richard's son Martin (Tim Healy). Meanwhile, Richard's Star Trek obsessed best friend Julian (Ewen Bremner) begins a tentative relationship with the mother (Bronagh Gallagher) of a fellow Trekkie he met online.

The Good
The seemingly ubiquitous Eddie Marsan is one of our best character actors, so it's good to see him take centre stage for once and he's extremely likeable as Richard. There's also strong support from Ewen Bremner, who gets most of the film's laughs as Julian – his Klingon sex scene with Bronagh Gallagher is a definite comic highlight. Paul Nicholls is cast nicely against type as Gary and proves a remarkably effective slime ball. However, Jessica Hynes looks utterly miserable throughout the entire film (even when Richard's meant to be winning her over) and there's no chemistry between them at all, which rather spoils the romcom element.

The Bad
The film has a few good laughs, but it's all very formulaic and doesn't quite pull off its key sequences. For example, the climactic battle would have been vastly improved by a crowd pleasing punch in the nose, whilst Martin's burgeoning relationship with a pretty girl at school (Chloe Hesar as Emily) is painfully underwritten.

Worth seeing?
This is never less than watchable; however, it's neither as inventive nor as funny as it could have been and it's hamstrung by a lack of chemistry between its leads.

Film Trailer

Faintheart (12A)
Faintheart has been reviewed by 2 users
image
01 The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies (tbc)

Lee Pace, Benedict Cumberbatch, Evangeline Lilly, ...

image
02 The Theory of Everything (tbc)

Felicity Jones, Eddie Redmayne, Emily Watson

image
03 Pride (15)

Bill Nighy, Andrew Scott, Dominic West, Imelda Sta...

image
04 What We Did on Our Holidays (12A)

David Tennant, Billy Connolly, Rosamund Pike, Anne...

image
05 The Guest (15)

Dan Stevens, Maika Monroe, Ethan Embry

Content updated: 02/09/2014 22:21

Latest Film Reviews

Film of the Week

A Most Wanted Man

Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as a German spy master who manipulates a tortured Chechen immigrant for his own ends.

UK Box Office Top 5 Films

Hot Tickets

Film 4 Summer ScreenFilm 4 Summer Screen

Taking over the big screen at Somerset House again for August 2014, the Film 4 Summer Screen series brings a variety of classics and brand new films to audiences in the capital.