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Twin Town Review

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★★★★

To describe this as "a Welsh Trainspotting" is a masterstroke of marketing but far from accurate and while it's true that the attachment of the names Andrew MacDonald and Danny Boyle as executive producers has given Twin Town a sizeable shove, here is a film that can roll up its sleeves, spit in your eye and fight its own battles, thank you very much. Like Boyle and MacDonald's orange-hued stormer, Twin Town offers sex and drugs and shock'n'roll but there the comparisons must end.

The town is Swansea, the twins surly, sordid and psychotic. Except they're not - twins, that is. Jeremy and Julian Lewis (Ifans and Evans, real life siblings) are instead brothers with a twin-like relationship. They share everything: thoughts, joints, baths and a total lack of respect for the law or the kind of moral values that make it safe for decent folk to walk the streets. Actually, it's crossing them that might be the problem as the Lewis boys do tend to drive along very quickly, without due care and attention, in cars that they've nicked for the sheer joy of going from A to B. On one such jaunt they scrape the motor of Terry (Scott), a copper so bent you could hang an Hawaiian shirt on him, adding fuel to the feud about to unfold.

The boys' handyman father Fatty Lewis (Huw Ceredig), then gets hurt falling off a ladder working for the local Mr. Big, Bryn Cartwright (William Thomas) and when Cartwright - embroiled in drug deals with Terry and his sidekick Greyo (Thomas) - declines to compensate their old man, the twins hatch a dark scheme to make him pay. Although frequently unlikely, their revenge is bitter, twisted and hideously funny, following some blackly comic set pieces (a hearse stolen from a funeral) and at least one genuinely unpleasant moment (a dog's severed head) but it's a kick-ass riot of a journey about as reverent as a whoopie cushion at a christening.

The script, co-written by first-time director Kevin Allen, sprays F-words like machine gun bullets and lurid white-trash characters like the guest list of the worst party in the street. But that's the point: Twin Town is low-life and proud of it. It's gritty, brutal and not for the faint of heart. It raises a fat index finger to Hollywood and invites it to spin. So much for romance and sleepy feelgood endings, Twin Town is here with a very rude awakening.