[14 April 2011]
Submarine is a coming-of-age tale set in Wales about an awkward 15-year-old named Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts). Sally Hawkins, who has recently delivered a range of memorable performances in films such as An Education and Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky, plays Oliver’s mother who is having an affair with an old lover (Paddy Considine of In America). To try to ameliorate his father’s sadness (Noah Taylor), Oliver is set on sabotaging his mother’s affair. Meanwhile Oliver falls for a spunky and blunt pyromaniac named Jordana (Yasmin Paige).
Pale, shaggy-haired Oliver in his toggle coat has an uncanny resemblance to Harold of Hal Ashby’s Harold & Maude. The style and subject matter of the film also recall the quirks and ironies of Wes Anderson’s Bottle Rocket and Rushmore where pain and sadness are veiled by comedy. The film is based on the acclaimed debut novel by Joe Dunthorne, and is directed by Richard Ayoade, who also wrote the adapted screenplay. If that weren’t enough reason to go see this one, in addition, Submarine features music written by Andrew Hewitt and also by Alex Turner, the frontman of Arctic Monkeys.