Indie Gems: 16 Years of Alcohol

This is a story about hope.

That's what Frankie (Kevin McKidd) tells us at the beginning of the film, though the scene that's set is bathed in an erie red glow as a seemingly innocent man is getting the crap kicked out of him for no reason suggests otherwise.

Frankie had a normal childhood until he saw his father cheat on his mother. Then he turned to alcohol and it's all gone down hill from there. He roams the night with his buddies and apparent Clockwork Orange enthusiasts as they start fights for no reason. Frankie meets Helen (Laura Fraser) one day and after a falling out with his boys, starts to make an attempt at bettering himself.

I threw this in my Netflix queue long ago because Iain De Caestecker had a small part. (He plays Frankie as a child) I didn't realize that this has a bit of a reputation for being "terrible" and "misrepresenting Scottish art house flicks." Neither of which I saw at all. Sure, the Clockwork Orange themes were very heavy handed, but I still enjoyed watching Frankie's journey from complete asshole to hopefully only semi asshole. The film incorporates the use of still photographs during some scenes, it mostly works and only occasionally feels a bit pretentious.  But what I appreciated the most about this is it had every opportunity to be brutal,but only skirted that line. This could've been a bloody mess.

So while this is apparently not a good representation of Scotland's offerings in the art house genre, I thought it was good enough and I'm glad I watched it. After all, it's still a little film that deserves a look.

Grade: B-

"Stand in the corner and face the wall for being a fucking idiot" - Frankie (Kevin McKidd)


  1. Never heard of this one. Putting it in my queue, also.

  2. I have not heard of this one but sounds like a film I would not be too interested never know though:)


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