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A Reel Life film section
Acid House movie review

Acid House (Trilogy)

I wasn’t sure how to take the film when I first saw it. As with anything by Irvine Welsh, it sports a particular kind of black humour that can be hard to swallow. Sometimes you don’t know whether to applaud or to throw up. Perhaps seeing these dark twists of fate on the big screen brought them a little too close to looking plausible or even real.

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The Granton Star Cause

What if retribution from God meant being turned into a fly? What if you’re actually more empowered as a fly than as a human being? Ask Boab, the lead character of the first story who faces God at the end of a 24 hour period during which his life turns to mush. He’s been sacked from his soccer team, tossed from his folks’ home and dumped by his girlfriend. If that wasn’t enough already, when he goes to the pub at the end of the day, God gives him a good chin wag for wasting his life. Boab soon discovers vengeance as a fly. Insects can be powerful things…

A Soft Touch

I wonder if a ‘Soft Johnny’ will work it’s way into Melbourne slang as easily as a ‘Full Monty’ has. Johnny is one of those people who seems to put up with whatever life dishes out to him, even his wife, Catriona, bonking the neighbour from upstairs. I know Larry the neighbour is supposed to be the psychopath in this tale, but I’d personally stay away from Catriona as well.

The Acid House

Remember the freaky baby in Trainspotting? This one even knows how to jerk off. Coco Bryce goes on the acid trip of his life when a lightning strike switches his psyche with that of a baby born to a middle-class English couple. Their first taste of parenthood is more than green poo in dirty diapers. Coco, a drug-crazed individual from the ‘other end of town’ has now become their bundle of joy. In baby form, Coco rediscovers the delights of infancy, especially during feeding time until he realises that he’s unable to stomach anything alcoholic. He then speaks to his mother in perfect adult English and talks her into taking him to his local pub to find his true form. Meanwhile, his former self is now in the claws of his girlfriend who’s determined to settle him down to married life.

Irvine Welsh himself is in the first few minutes of The Granton Star Cause where he plays a cameo as the park keeper sweeping up rubbish in the changing rooms. Irvine wrote this role for himself because he once had a job as a park keeper in the very same park where they did the filming of this scene. There’s also a cameo appearance from Pat Stanton, former Captain for the Hibs and Scotland football team. He can be seen as the barman who serves the footballers their post match beers.

Perhaps if Irvine Welsh played God for a day, the world would be a more entertaining, thought-provoking place. Hellish and dangerous yes, but definitely not apathetic.

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Just the facts:

Title: Acid House (1998)
Written by: Irvine Welsh
Directed by: Paul McGuigan
Produced by: David Muir, Alex Usborne
Edited by: Andrew Hulme
Director of Photography: Alasdair Walker
running time:

The Players: Ewan Bremner, Kevin McKidd, Maurice Roeves,
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