EIFF 2015 Review: The Legend Of Barney Thomson

film reviews | movies | features | BRWC EIFF 2015 Review: The Legend Of Barney Thomson

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Barney Thomson we are told at the very beginning of this film has two styles back and sides or back and sides. Barney works at Henderson Barbers. It’s the story of what happens when you move chairs so the voice over tells us. Not only is it a story of what happens when you change chairs but also a love letter to the city of Glasgow.

Barney Thomson is a sad case. He’s not achieved much in his life to date. The one constant is that he’s always worked at Henderson Barbers. However, he only has two haircuts in his repertoire and is not popular with the customers. The owner’s son decides to call time on Barney but an unfortunate accident sets off a chain reaction in this very jet black comedy.


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The Legend of Barney Thomson marks the directorial debut by Robert Carlyle, as ever brilliant in the title role and also equally, it would appear, at ease behind the camera. All the supporting cast is excellent including Ray Winstone, Tom Courtenay but it’s Emma Thompson who plays his foul mouthed, bingo loving, label everything chain smoking mother whose never been better.

Whilst the ending is rather silly and possibly too neat, it is a rather enjoyable film so bring your blackest humour to watch this when it opens in UK cinemas on 24 July.

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<p>She is as picky about what she watches as what she eats. She watches movies alone and dines solo too (a new trend perhaps?!). As a self confessed scaredy cat she doesn’t watch horror films, even Goosebumps made her jump in parts! <br /> Follow her on @liquidmarmalade</p>