Weekender (2011) starring Jack O'Connell, Henry Lloyd-Hughes, Emily Barclay, Zawe Ashton, Stephen Wight, Iain McKee, Tom Meeten, Kyle Summercorn directed by Karl Golden Movie Review

Weekender (2011)   2/52/52/52/52/5

Jack O'Connell in Weekender (2011)

Weekend Business

I don't know what writer Chris Coghill's experience of 90s rave culture was like but it appears after watching his "Weekender" it was different to mine. Now maybe the rave culture in Manchester was different to that nearer London or maybe instead of trying to make an authentic movie about 90s rave culture he just used it is as a basis for what is a rags to riches to rags type story. In truth as I watched "Weekender" I felt that Coghill and director Karl Golden made a movie less about 90s rave culture and made their version of Nick Love's "The Business" almost a follow on movie having taken us from the 80s into the early 90s.

Cheeky Chappies Matt (Henry Lloyd-Hughes) and Dylan (Jack O'Connell) are always on the make even if it means getting chased by a naked landlord after stealing a fag machine. With the police cracking down on the illegal rave culture they decide now is the time to try and make money from hosting their own rave before the cops make it impossible. Their little enterprise brings them to the attention of Gary Mac (Stephen Wight) who supplies them with drugs and flies them out to Ibiza where he wants to join up to put on even bigger raves. But with each rave Matt and Dylan grow further apart as Dylan gets caught up in the new lifestyle and some unsavoury new friends.

Henry Lloyd-Hughes in Weekender (2011)

Okay from my viewpoint "Weekender" is not a movie which is trying to be an authentic representation of the early 90s rave culture, heck the raves shown early on look far too staged. In fact from clothes, haircuts and the lack of sweat and craziness it just fails to convince one little bit when it comes to rave culture. And trust me just by showing someone watching the news on an old wooden framed TV does little to suggest authenticity.

But as I said "Weekender" feels to me that this isn't about trying to recreate rave culture but to do something similar to "The Business" with a story of two wags rising to the top and then going their separate ways when one gets caught up in the drug and rave scene. And taken from that perspective it sort of works, well in a low budget, less authentic sort of way. And like with "The Business" it is full of geezer style humour as we have a bunch of characters from jack the lad Dylan, DJ Captain Acid and the picked upon Peanut. Basically as you watch "Weekender" you will just have this sense that it is trying to be like other movies and never really finding its own voice.

What this all boils down to is that if you plan to watch "Weekender" because you have heard it is about 90's rave culture then think again. But if you watched "The Business" and want something along the same lines then this is like a light version.