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Watching "The Angels' Share" and "Upstream Color"
Published on May 29, 2013 by Sara Foss

Over at the DG, I write about the new Ken Loach film "The Angels' Share," and the new Shane Carruth film "Upstream Color," which I loved.

Here's an excerpt:

"I don’t expect comedy or goofy hijinks from the films of Ken Loach, the British director whose often grim filmography focuses on the struggles of the working class.

But his latest, 'The Angels’ Share,' is a gentle human comedy about hope, redemption and whisky. It opens with a very funny montage of troubled young Glasgow residents being sentenced to community service for crimes such as shoplifting birds from a pet store and drunkenly defacing public monuments. The final offender to go before the judge is Robbie (Paul Brannigan), whose crime is more serious: He beat up a couple guys with whom he has a bit of a history, inflicting serious harm. But the judge is lenient, as Robbie did not initiate the incident and has an otherwise decent record.

Robbie and the other offenders find themselves under the tutelage of Harry (John Henshaw), who puts them to work painting a building. Harry eventually becomes something of a mentor for Robbie, accompanying the young man to the hospital after his girlfriend has given birth to his son, and introducing him to the pleasure of drinking high-quality whisky. One Saturday, Harry takes the offenders to a distillery, and Robbie discovers that he has an exceptional nose and is capable of identifying a whisky’s more subtle flavors."

Click here to read the whole thing.

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