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A movie directed by Richard Ayoade

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Two Periscopes Up!

  • Oct 3, 2011


Written and Directed by Richard Ayoade

Starring Craig Roberts, Sally Hawkins and Paddy Considine


Oliver Tate: I live in a large house with my parents. It has breathtaking scenery. I’m not sure I believe in scenery.


The adolescent mind can sure be a dramatic one and that intensity is played up to hilarious heights in Richard Ayoade’s narrative feature film debut, SUBMARINE. The mind that we are given unadulterated access to belongs to one Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts), a 15-year old only boy obsessed with but two things - a girl in his class (naturally) and preventing the dissolution of his parents’ marriage. It his belief that these fascinations and the way he deals with them would make a great film and despite this blatant narcissism, he is actually spot on about that.


Oliver is an unassuming chap. When he speaks, he can barely form a proper sentence without tripping over nearly every word. He watches the people around him while hiding behind corners, all the while fearful that if he doesn’t intervene, they won’t get it right. That said, he rarely speaks up because he does not yet know his own voice, or more specifically, he has not yet learned how to make that voice heard by others. In his own head however, his world is the center of all worlds, typical of most teenagers and sadly, fairly typical of most adults I know as well. And while his problems are hardly unique, it is the way in which Oliver tells his own story that gives them all the importance required to make them seem monumental. 20-year-old, Roberts, is brilliant as Oliver, making him the most memorable adolescent on film since Jason Schwartzman’s Max Fischer in Wes Anderson’s RUSHMORE.


The actual man behind Oliver’s movie in his mind is Ayoade and the choices he makes in SUBMARINE are inspired and incredibly clever. By constantly drawing attention to the filmmaking process - calling out his shots before they happen, pointing out conventional approaches to storytelling and then carrying out those exact same approaches - Ayoade demonstrates a fine understanding of film language and great ability to make memorable moments. Once you dive in to SUBMARINE, you will not want to surface again.

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LUNCH rating is out of 10.

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November 22, 2011
Another great review.
October 06, 2011
Man, I feel so left out since this still hasn't played in my area....thanks Joseph!
October 09, 2011
The good news here is that I believe it is available to rent or own now.
More Submarine reviews
review by . November 06, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
**** out of ****     Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts) is a lonely, loveless, confused young intellectual. Still at the High School age, he lives off of his delusions (that his peers adore him and that he has many, many friends) so that he can escape his reality; which consists of the fact that he is actually completely without solid friends, and then there's his sexually lazy parents (Noah Taylor and Sally Hawkins, in two great roles). Oliver is more concerned with chronicling their …
review by . June 18, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         One of the great failures of some teen comedies is that it’s automatically assumed that their characters are likeable, even if they do all manner of unlikeable things. Consider the awful 2008 film Charlie Bartlett, in which Anton Yelchin played a high school kid who, in a desperate attempt to become popular, became a drug lord and a therapist for his classmates; the filmmakers wanted us to see the title character as a tragicomic hero, but …
About the reviewer
Joseph Belanger ()
Ranked #26
Hello Lunchers. I am a thirty-something guy making his way in Toronto. I am a banker by day and a film critic the rest of the time. Sensitive, sharp and sarcastic are just a few words that start with … more
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About this movie



Director: Richard Ayoade
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Release Date: 3 June 2011 (USA)
Screen Writer: Richard Ayoade, Joe Dunthorne
Runtime: 97 min
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