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Hear My Song Review

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Set in the present, a sweet-talking entrepreneur and dreamer, Micky O'Neill (Dunbar, also Chelsom's co-writer) runs an old-fashioned night club in Liverpool that is going to the wall when he books Mr X - a singer passing himself off as disappeared tenor Josef Locke.

★★★★

Tough customers with an allergy to whimsy should probably steer clear of this fanciful, fresh, charmingly funny film. Everyone else, arm yourselves with a box of chocolates, a tissue or two and be prepared to be delighted. Just when we were convinced Film Four and British Screen didn't know a joke if it bit them, along comes writer/director Peter Chelsom - making his feature debut with a real out-of-left-field zinger - inveigling some of their dosh to disprove the theory.

The inspiration for this dotty piece came from the true and curious tale of tenor Josef Locke, "Mr Blackpool" to his ardent post-War fans, whose disappearance - one step ahead of Inland Revenue - in the 50s was followed by the appearance of a singer billed as Mr X who successfully passed himself off for a time as Jo Locke.

It teeters dangerously on the edge of corn and cliche - naturally all the Irish rusticals are pixilated comedians - but Chelsom keeps everything lightly dancing along to a magnificently sentimental tuneful climax. Completely disarming and absolutely delicious.