17 September, 2005

The Business

I thought The Football Factory was excellent and looked forward to The Business from the same writer-director, Nick Love. However The Business showed just how much The Football Factory's success was down to John King's original novel. Love simply can't make up characters and story on his own and, judging by his interviews, he doesn't even think it's important.

According to Love he wrote The Business quickly while doing post-production on The Football Factory and did no research. Unless you're a genius, if you're working that way the script is always going to be crap.

OK, there are films that "write themselves" but that's when you get really good characters and a really good story quite quickly, which is rare. Usually you have to do some work to make them good.

Apparently The Business is aimed at "lad's mags" readers who want to be entertained and not Guardian readers. Speaking as a lad's mag reader, I find it patronising that Love thinks I'll be happy with gunplay and speedboats and not be bothered by the rubbish story and plot-holes. Speaking as a Guardian reader, just because I use my brain it doesn't mean I don't want to be entertained.

Strangely in interviews Nick Love talks about his obession with detail in making sure the right 1980s clothes and shopping bags are used in the film when unless it's obviously anachronistic (wrist watches in 1 Million Years BC, for instance) the audience won't care. What we care about are characters we can believe in and a story that isn't boring but engaging.

Nick Love's Channel 4 interview

Nick Love's Film Focus interview

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