Attack the Block (2011)

Attack the Block follows a group of youths (or yoof) who, after a successful mugging, witness an alien crashlanding to Earth which they promptly kill and parade around their estate like a badge of honour. Whilst celebrating their victory with the local drug dealer (Nick Frost) in his top storey flat, they witness another alien landing. Sensing an opportunity to make money, the newly christened alien hunters go in search of potential spoils.

Attack the Block suffers from unfair comparisons to Shaun of the Dead; British comedian puts together scary movie that’s got the potential to translate across the pond. But this really is a lazy comparison. This is a stronger, more confident piece of work. Director/writer Joe Cornish throws his balls to the wall and provides us with an sci-fi action movie that just happens to take to place in SAAAAAAAAAF LAAAAANDON. The set pieces are impressive and Cornish proves that he is more than capable of the being the next big thing. A battle between Team Chav and Team ET set within the confines of a living room, showing that you don’t have to go large scale to literally go large scale.

Rather than provide us with a cheeky chappy spouting numerous pop-references, Attack the Block‘s protagonists are introduced as the kind of children that keep the Daily Mail awake at night. They skulk around masked in hoodies and balaclavas talking in thick accents and dialects. With the aforementioned mugging, they are not the people we usually cheer on and yet, Cornish manages to make us care about them once the claret starts to flow. This is in no small part down to the actors who play our group of chavs. Led by John Boyega as alpha-male Moses, the gang are incredibly believable. Showing street smarts and naivety in every snarl from their lips. The only chink in the armour is Nick Frost, whose indelible, doe eyed chunky monkey routine is growing a bit stale.

Attack of the Block’s director/writer, Joe Cornish was one half of the duo, Adam and Joe, who, in the late 90s, gave us this:

This has nothing to do with the review, but it’s a fantastic opportunity to both relive my youth and give you an idea of what we at EBFS dance to at Christmas.

Attack the Block is more believable than Kidulthood and Adulthood put together and for that reason alone, it should be seen.

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