High Fidelity (15)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner25/10/2000

Five out of five stars

After a messy break up with the love of his life Rob evaluates his shambolic love history against a back drop of musical classics.

The British film industry must be kicking itself for not getting hold of High Fidelity before Hollywood. Originally a best seller for Nick Hornby, the film has been transplanted from Britain to Chicago which will no doubt anger some of the die-hard fans.

However, the result is a wonderful film with great wit and sparkling performances both from the central character Rob (John Cusack) and his assortment of friends and ex-lovers.

The great strength of the film is the strength of the assembled cast. Cusack is an amiable hero who despite possessing few obvious ‘likeable’ qualities is an easy character for audiences to relate to.

He’s surrounded by equally strong supporting actors - Jack Black is inspired as Barry, an employee at Rob’s record store, who thinks nothing of turning customers away if he doesn’t agree with their musical tastes.

At the film’s start we see Rob’s girlfriend Laura (Iben Hjejle) walk out on him, causing him to ponder his problematic love like and ask himself why he is doomed to be a romantic failure.

Rob’s appraisal of where his relationships seem to go wrong is explained in monologues to camera and flashbacks, both of which work effectively.

His self criticism and attempts to woo/harass Laura back from the comical Ian (a great cameo from Tim Robbins) are at times humorous at others quite tragic – but for anyone who has ever questioned love, the whole film is worryingly easy to relate to!.

Deftly directed by Stephen Frears the film boasts both a great soundtrack and a wonderful cast. Definitely one of the best comedies of the year!

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Content updated: 17/10/2017 00:42

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