|A bit Dead Man's Shoes ain't it?|
Paddy Considine claims this isn't a typical British gritty 'kitchen sink' drama, but let's be honest, it is. Typical in the sense that we have protagonists that we almost hate to love with their brutally apparent flaws and failings. However, in this more-bitter-than-sweet Leeds estate-set story, we see an additional class division sub-plot, in the case of the middle class Hannah and the unemployed working class Joseph (with possible significance on the names - biblically Hannah was the mother of Joseph). To put it crudely, Considine clearly wanted to highlight that alcoholism, violence and abuse all come hand-in-hand without being restricted to lower income households with scenes notably influenced by both Mike Leigh and Considine's past colleague and mentor Shane Meadows. This Is England '86 seemingly set the benchmark for graphic displays of domestic violence, and so Tyrannosaur, though disturbing, was far more bearable to watch even with the menacing (typecasted?) Eddie Marsan. The Mike Leigh-esq strength of the natural chemistry between the male and female leads creates an empathy from the viewer, so even in times when the action seems a little unbelievable, you find yourself rooting for them. Depressing, but not that depressing.