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Screen Daily: ‘Aaaaaaaah!’: Review

August 29th, 2015

screendaily15dDir/Scr. Steve Oram. UK, 2015, 79 mins.

In its enthusiasm for poo-flinging, food-fights, penis-chewing, cannibalism, tea-bagging and sudden stabbings, the film sets out to shock in a particularly cosy way

Inhabiting a waste ground somewhere between radical theatre and slob comedy, Steve Oram’s debut as a writer-director-star – following up his writer-actor work on Ben Wheatley’s Sightseers – is liable to corner a small but devoted cult following. It’s at least as interested in gross-out gags that out-gross the average Hollywood frat-boy film as it is in delivering a skewed yet pointed look at a suburban Britain where everyone communicates in grunts and gestures the way cavemen and women do in Hammer Fillms’ well-remembered prehistoric adventure films (One Million Years BC, When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth).

AAAAAAAAH!’s specific precedents might include such one-offs as Richard Lester’s post-apocalyptic The Bed-Sitting Room, Akira Kurosawa’s rubbish-strewn Dodes’ka-den or Claude Faraldo’s Parisian troglodyte drama Themroc, but it’s fresh, distinctive and strange enough on its own and tight enough at 79 minutes not to outwear its welcome.

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