Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Suburban Shootout (2006)


Suburban Shootout (2006)
Directed by Vito Rocco 
Starring Anna Chancellor, Felicity Montagu, Amelia Bullmore, Rachel Blake 
Genre: Crime-comedy 
UK

“I just  want you to know I just had anal sex with your boyfriend in the toilets.”
“Really? That's so cool!” 

Perpetually put-upon plain-jane Joyce (Bullmore) has just moved into the fairytale suburb of Little Stempington, a picturesque, upper-middle-class paradise where crime simply does not exist. Her husband, Jeremy (Ralph Ineson), is Stempington's new chief of police, and her teenage son Bill (Tom Hiddleson) is home from his year in Africa building an  orphanage. Pleasant people, pleasant town. Or is it? 

It is not. There is a very good reason why there's no crime in Stempington. Turns out there's a trio of gun-toting soccer-moms who beat, shoot and terrorize anybody who even thinks of doing anything untoward in their perfect little 'burb. Worse still, they have competition – there's another rogue trio of 40-something ladies who do their best to thwart their arch-nemeses at every turn.


Joyce hasn't even unpacked her boxes before Camilla (Chancellor) and Barbara (Montagu) start having gun battles over which team Joyce is going to join. Joyce gets blackmailed into joining Camilla's crew when she unwittingly blows up the local wicker basket shop, but secretly works with Babs' team to rid Stempington of Camilla's evil cabal. Things get even more complicated when they get caught up in the estrogen-dealing trade (estrogen patches are a new underground drug sensation! Get into it!). When Camilla's tarty daughter Jewel (Ruth Wilson, doing a sort of slutty, grown-up Veruca Salt) steals their drug money, they end up being stalked, kidnapped and menaced by French gangsters.


Outrage piles on outrage, leading to a...well, the title of the show is Suburban Shootout, after all. 


Frequently hair-raising but always funny, Suburban Shootout is pretty delightful stuff, deftly balancing the escalating crime story with character-driven humor. Fans of Hot Fuzz and Weeds should love it. 


- Ken McIntyre

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