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Goodbye Charlie Bright Review

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Charlie (Nicholls) and his four pals spend their time idly hanging around on a London housing estate, occasionally stealing a football or snatching a handbag. They're going nowhere - the only one with a real chance of escaping is Charlie. Except that he's got the virtually orphaned Justin almost surgically attached to him. He's got to get out, but doesn't know how.

★★★★★

In the US, teen movies are about losing your virginity to a pastry or trying to relocate your vehicle after a wild night on the town. Over here, we do things slightly differently, as debut director Nick Love's humorous drama illustrates.

Set during a long hot summer, the film focuses on the straining relationship between Charlie - the only one who could possibly have a decent future away from the estate - and his all-but-parentless friend Justin (Manookian), who always manages to screw things up. Charlie's also sweet on the girl who's moved in across the way, but again can't get near her for Justin.

As a debut effort, this is great stuff. The kids' performances shine, and support from the likes of Phil Daniels and David Thewlis always helps. It certainly makes a refreshing change from jizz in a cup.

Nicely played - even Dani Behr as the 'new bird' isn't bad - this has some genuinely funny moments and provides an enjoyable addition to the CV's of the talented young cast.

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