Gypo

"Excellent"

Gypo Review


Dogme 95 arrives in a dank and chilly British seaside town in Gypo, writer/director Jan Dunn's stripped-down Rashomon-like tale of lives that collide in both fortunate and unfortunate ways.

Helen (Pauline McLynn) is a miserably frustrated 40-something housewife, coping with a brutally distant husband Paul (Paul McGann) and a truly awful daughter Kelly (Tamzin Dunstone), a young and foul-mouthed unwed mother who has turned Helen into her all-day babysitter. Helen's one attempt to carve out a bit of a life for herself by taking scupting classes is mocked by both husband and daughter.

One light in Helen's bleak life is her daughter's friend Tasha (Chloe Sirene), a sweet and poised Eastern European immigrant who happens to be part of a clan of Romany refugees (aka Gypsies or "Gypos") who live in a government-sanctioned trailer park in town. Faced with the hatred and discrimination of most of the townspeople, Tasha stays serene, and Helen admires her good manners, manners she maintains even in the face of Paul's outright loathing of her. If only Helen's own daughter could be this nice.

Helen wonders why her husband is never home and imagines what Tasha's life is like. We find out the surprising ways in which all these lives intersect when the same stretch of time is presented to us three different times, first through the eyes of Helen and then through the experiences of Paul and Tasha. Gimmicky though it may sound, the technique works perfectly here, giving us the chance to piece together the truth behind the silences and remember that even the most mundane lives are full of drama and secrets.

The movie picks up speed as Helen reaches out to Tasha's mother Irina (Rula Lenska, who trivia buffs will remember as the much-mocked star of a series of '70s-era shampoo commercials), helping her in small ways to make her life easier while simultaneoulsy pissing off her husband even more. When a threatening figure from Tasha and Irina's past shows up to cause trouble, the film literally races to its finish, and the rush is suspenseful.

The whole high-minded Dogme 95 filmmaking technique has often been ridiculed (my main complaint is that such films are almost always lit terribly; you can't see a thing), but Gypo puts the technique to great use. Give a small group of excellent actors a tightly wound story, give them the freedom to improvise and run around a bit, and then stay out of their way. The results can be powerful.

Focus?



Gypo

Facts and Figures

Run time: 98 mins

In Theaters: Friday 20th October 2006

Distributed by: Wolfe Video

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

IMDB: 6.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Jan Dunn

Producer: Elaine Wickham

Starring: as Paul, Tamzin Dunstone as Kelly, as Helen, as Irina, Chloe Sirene as Tasha, Barry Latchford as Jimmy, Freddie Connor as Tasha's Husband, Tom Stuart as Darren, Olegar Fedoro as Tasha's Father, Sean Wilton as Art Tutor, Angelica O'Reilly as Prostitute, Rebecca Clow as Terminal Hostess, Ashley McGuire as Penny, Majid Iqbal as Illegal Worker, as Michael, Claire Angus as Irina's Neighbour, Josef Atlin as Michael, James Blanchard as Tall Bully, Clara Clow as Baby Jordan, Charlotte Edmundson as Katy

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.