Destination: Dewsbury is a comedy about getting older, friendship and coming to terms with what life has handed out to you. Peter (Matt Sheahan) is a teacher. He’s tired of his job, his wife has thrown him out and to top it all off the father of his childhood friend, Frankie (Michael Kinsey) has told him that Frankie is dying of cancer. So, Peter goes about getting his old friends back together for one last road trip to Dewsbury to see their old friend.
Gaz (Dan Shelton), Adam (David J. Keogh) and Smithy (Tom Gilling) all have their reasons for getting away for a little while so after a few pints to catch up, they head off on the road.
However, things don’t go exactly as they planned. Destination: Dewsbury is a film that proudly wears its heart on its sleeve as well as a lot of the influences that went into making the film. The kinds of movies about gangs of friends have been seen from City Slickers, American Pie and more recently The Inbetweeners Movie however some of the humour in Destination: Dewsbury works better than others.
It was a good start for the film with Peter’s dry wit voiceover telling the audience about his life since school but unfortunately after that it descends into the more juvenile, gross out humour that I didn’t think fit with the tone of the rest of the movie. The two-dimensional central characters didn’t help either and the Russian gangster subplot was entirely unnecessary. The second act plays like a string of jokes that had been seen in movies aimed at a much younger audience and I feel that its target audience would have seen a lot of them before when they were much younger themselves. I even get the feeling that the people who the film is aimed at probably wouldn’t appreciate them now as much as they did back then.
However, when it came time to speak about the heart behind the film then I am glad to say that it fully gave its emotional punch and it was very affective.
The bonding between the friends really helped to pull them together and the speeches about cancer seemed to come from a very real and heartfelt place. No doubt inspired by the film’s dedication. Destination: Dewsbury did make me laugh and hit all the right notes when it mattered, but like its protagonists when telling their touching story it benefits more when it starts acting its age.
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