Beginning in kitchen-sink territory on a Scottish estate, this teen bromance eventually escapes into amiable nostalgia and artful euphoria
In 1999, Britfilm upstart Human Traffic – born of the same creative big bang that begat both Trainspotting and Kevin and Perry Go Large – caught the tail end of rave culture. Two decades on, Beats offers a more considered return to the same scene, composed by cooler, wiser heads in artful silvery greys, with contextualising clips of Tony Blair outlining his vision for a new Britain … after which, it all plainly went a bit Pete Tong. Nostalgic flashbacks are guaranteed for a certain demographic, although there is a curious absence of the era’s biggest beats (were there licensing issues?) and some perversely cramped framing.
For a good while, writer Kieran Hurley (adapting his 2012 play) and director Brian Welsh seem determined to fashion kitchen-sink drama from one of the most outdoorsy of youth phenomena. One limitation is that the film’s energies are almost exclusively focused on a cosily familiar odd-couple bromance.
Source: The Guardian
Beats review – blissed-out flashbacks to the 90s rave scene