This is what going to the movies is supposed to be like! Think of Attack the Block as a small reward for putting up with the sub-par efforts that have been all too common in North American theatres for the past few years. This film is a wonderfully eclectic combination of sci-fi, horror, comedy and adventure, which never commits too firmly to one specific genre. The result is a film that can be enjoyed by anyone, although I would not call it ‘family friendly’.
I always love going to see genre-mashups, even if the movie isn’t that great, the product still tends to feel fresh. Fortunately, Attack the Block is great and happens to be one of the best movies I’ve seen in a long time. Think The Goonies meets Gremlins, except the kids are a British gang of street toughs and someone has juiced up the gremlins with a boatload of steroids. Trust me Bruv, you’ll love it!
The story starts like this, a gang of younger teens are up to their usual tricks, hanging around the block and robbing people that look like easy targets. When an attempted robbery goes awry, it’s not because of resistance from the victim, nor is it because of police intervention. The robbery goes wrong because a hurtling projectile from outer space nearly kills the thugs and victim alike. This foreign object turns out to be a a small alien monster and shortly after a rather harrowing encounter, the kids find themselves pedaling like mad on their bikes back to the block (their apartments) to save their skins.
For the entire runtime, roughly 90 mins, Attack the Block stays within the limits set by the storyline, budget and young group of actors and demolishes all expectations. The creatures look great and are terrifying. The British slang will be extremely fresh for North American audiences and the laughs are plentiful. The actors that were selected to play the group of troublesome teens do an excellent job, while some fabulous comedic performances are turned in by Luke Treadaway as Brewis, the wrong-place-at-the-wrong-time pothead who just wants to get his fix and deal with the alien invasion another day, and Jumayn Hunter as Hi-Hatz, who takes what it means to be Gangsta to a previously unheard of level.
Even if you aren’t the biggest horror or sci-fi fan, Attack the Block deserves your attention. It is fairly tame in the violence department, by today’s standards, and doesn’t delve into sci-fi techno-babble. It was made with care and passion, and it shows.
Allow it bruv, you won’t regret it!