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KINKY BOOTS (PG-13) (2005)

MIRAMAX

Official Site

Director: Julian Jarrold

Producers: Nick Barton, Susan Mackie, Peter Ettedgui

Written by: Geoff Deane, Tim Firth

Cast: Joel Edgerton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nick Frost, Sarah-Jane Potts, Jemima Rooper

Rating:


While my peers and fellow students were skipping class and marching on the capitol, I took it upon myself to watch a British comedy. Because 9 out of 10 times, if I had to choose between a British comedy with “Spaced” and Shaun Of The Dead actor Nick Frost, and marching on the capitol for immigration reform, I’ll probably be going with the former.

So, Kinky Boots, a new and cute little British comedy based on alleged true events. Charlie Price (Edgerton) is the only remaining heir of his father’s shoe factory, which he takes over after his father’s sudden passing. It’s a quaint little blue-collar factory that produces durable, quality long-lasting shoes. It also supplies a good portion of the Northampton community’s jobs. Well at least it’s not a big shoe corporation moves in across the street and is trying to put them out of business. After they are stuck with a large order they are unable to sell, it puts them in a tight spot. So for Charlie, it’s either finding a new niche market, or redundancy for all the factory’s veteran workers. In a chance encounter he meets Lola/Simon (Ejiofor), a transvestite who makes Charlie realize that transvestites need high quality shoes that will support their masculine proportions and won’t break. In a last-ditch campaign to save the factory, Charlie forms an accord with Lola to design some footwear to promote in Milan.

I like British comedy. It’s often dry and clever, not condescending, and there’s a good rhythm to it. This movie is sentimental and a bit overly dramatic at times, but it works. Much like Dear Frankie, it didn’t feel manipulative, hokey, or contrived at all.

You have a solid cast of talented thespians here. The supporting players are all up to task and lack repulsion or typical cookie cutter qualities seen in most mainstream Hollywood comedies. There’s the love interest and intrepid assistant, Lauren (Potts), a lovely woman. And then there’s the force of nature that is Nick Frost. Whenever he is in the shot, he automatically gets your eye. And his piercing gaze is unlike any other performer since Clint Eastwood.

Edgerton is good as a young man who reluctantly puts his future plans aside in order to inherit the factory from his late father, almost like Jimmy Stewart in Frank Capra’s It’s A Wonderful Life. And then you have the dual lead in Lola… or Simon—like Charlie, someone who has or had issues with living up to a father’s expectations. There’s real gravity to the paternal themes at work here. And hey, the tranny can sing.

—Jeffrey “The Vile One” Harris

hybridCinema Ratings Guide:

Take a pal and pay full price for both tickets.

Itís worth a full-price ticket.

Itís worth a matinee ticket.

Wait for video rental.

Check out the video from the library, if you must.

While we would never encourage anyone to destroy a video...


Mike Doughty



none now
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