Flawed, fascinating, atypical Britflick

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Miranda isn’t sure what it wants to be, but has an interesting time failing to make up its mind. Sort of a romantic comedy thriller (but then again nothing of the sort), it casts John Simm as a nerdy librarian who falls for mysterious femme fatale Christina Ricci, who may or may not be called Miranda. She’s a con artist mixed up with svengali John Hurt (who wants to keep her) and sleazeball multi-millionaire Kyle MacLachlan (who wants to bed her), but our boy’s too out of his depth to suss much of this. His innocence is what attracts her. Eventually, the worm turns, in a mix-and-match plot which judders awkwardly.

Yet the romance between Simm and Ricci is beautifully written (by Rob Young), with some insightful, funny lines, and director Marc Munden allows the two leads as much time as they like to deliver them. The resulting gauche pauses will scupper any chance of a wide audience, but let’s be grateful for a home-grown (clearly low-budget) film which places its faith in script, acting and a certain wobbly grace. Strange, clumsy, and weirdly truthful.


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The Who, New York Dolls, Fugazi, Peggy Seeger, Scritti Politti, Bob Dylan, Marvin Gaye, Serge Gainsbourg, Israel Nash and Valerie June