Posted by: greercn | September 30, 2013

Sunshine on Leith

Improbable amounts of Edinburgh sunshine and outdoor group songs permeate this frothy musical. Its hint of bite in the plot and its ingenious use of The Proclaimers as a soundtrack makes it a treat.

But you have to get over the amount of sun on show. When they do the UK-wide weather forecast, they always tell us it’s raining in Scotland.

They could cut a few minutes of weather time by telling us when it’s NOT raining in Scotland and Ireland, really.

To get the most out of this 100-minute Scottish Nationalism advertisement, you should love musicals and The Proclaimers and Edinburgh, in equal measures.

Our story starts with two hero soldiers and their mates. Bad things happen. They sing.

Our guys come home and the path of true love does not run smoothly. Both they and the older couple – an unusually chirpy Peter Mullan and an unexpectedly glum Jane Horrocks – face tough challenges.

They sing and dance when they are happy and when they are sad. The songs are interpreted in a very clever way and it’s all enjoyable.

Stephen Greenhorn has adapted his own lively and original musical for the big screen. Dexter Fletcher directs and shows a real feel for the musical form. Yes, you may leave humming those songs.

I saw it at a special preview for members at the Stratford East Picturehouse. It’s fun and uplifting. The young leads are all engaging and energetic and Jason Flemyng is there too, in an unlikely role.

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