A somber work of relentless despair that, despite a slightly overdone final act, evokes the golden age of British film slice-of-life presentations.
There are no spoilers in this Give Them Wings movie review.
Directed by Sean Cronin, based on the true story of Paul Hodgson, who was suffering from meningitis, this kitchen sink drama is an unabashed and dark piece of British filmmaking that is often difficult to behold in its candid portrayal of the suffering of Paul’s life.
The film stars newcomer Daniel Watson as Paul Hodgson, a rising star who received the Best Actor Award at the Richard Harris International Film Festival for his performance as the disabled Paul Hodgson. GIVE THEM WINGS also features music legend Toyah Willcox (quadrophenia, The storm) and Bill Fellows (Broadchurch, Downton Abbey).
give them wings Directed by actor Sean Cronin, a familiar face who often plays villains in franchises like James Bond and Impossible Mission. He has also directed human interest stories such as the World War I film Eleven and An unfortunate woman. This film is an adaptation of Hogson’s award-winning autobiography Flipper’s side.
Set in 1989, the film tells the story of Paul’s heartbreaking journey to acceptance and follows in the footsteps of films like my left foot and Billy Elliott. The late 80’s setting is worth noting as some scenes are particularly disturbing and might upset some viewers.
Sean Cronin said: “give them wings is a hugely important film that confronts disability discrimination and turns it on its head, a film that teaches humanity that we must accept people ‘as they are’ and not as ‘them’ to be seem to be”. I am very honored to have been chosen to bring Paul’s incredible story to the big screen.”
The film itself is often a very sombre piece of work, and for some, the cast’s unrelenting desperation might make this a difficult watch to watch.
Paul goes through the most traumatic events of the film’s run, and Daniel Watson gives an intriguing performance. The rest of the cast is getting on board too and as a fan of her early career it was wonderful to see Toyah Wilcox back on screen.
Cronin directs the production with a steady hand, and it has the right aesthetic for the material. Perhaps a few more flair could have helped with Play For Today’s presentation style, but overall this is a strong offering.
If you remember the golden age of British film slice-of-life presentations, then you’ll find plenty to enjoy here. I wonder if an international audience will be fully on board, it’s a very British production and that reflects in the DNA of the film and the last act feels a bit over the top and tonally at odds with the previous two acts, but if you’ve invested enough, you’ll probably run with it.
https://readysteadycut.com/2022/08/06/give-them-wings-review/ Give Them Wings review – a very bleak piece of work