LFF 2018 Preview - Thunder Road
Dir: Jim Cummings
Starring Jim Cummings
Bearing the somewhat unusual credit of “Written, Directed and Performed by Jim Cummings”, Thunder Road is very much a one-man show. Cummings is cop on the edge Jim, initially introduced, in one very well sustained single take, giving a eulogy at his mother’s funeral that ranges from blackly comic to genuinely sad and moving to – bizarrely – interpretive dance, and to an inability to play his mom’s favourite song, Bruce Springsteen’s Thunder Road, on his young daughter pink boom box (probably because this micro budget indie couldn’t afford the rights. Or maybe it was just funnier that way.)
And the film pretty much continues in that fashion, given that cop Jim is just inches away from a breakdown and his subsequent actions verge – much like both Jim the character and Jim the actor – somewhere between touching and annoying. Yes, it’s a film awash in its own quirkiness, with more than a hint of self-indulgence, but ultimately the empathy you find for this man wins out.
It’s uneven, but something about Cummings’ performance keeps bringing you around.
The movie never gets to Springsteen, but it does end on a delightful reinterpretation of Bon Iver. And that’s no bad thing
Thunder Road plys the LFF on plays the LFF on 10, 11 & 20 October
More info @ www.bfi.org.uk/lff
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