Put simply, life is a struggle. This is the subject of Tyrannosaur, a truly profound existential drama, written and directed by frequent Shane Meadows (Dead Man’s Shoes, A Room for Romeo Brass) collaborator, Paddy Considine. In his début film, Considine, combines dark philosophical undertones with gritty realism, in order to tell the simple and brutally honest story of two contrasting individuals; unemployed widower, Joseph (Peter Mullan), and charity-shop worker, Hannah (Olivia Colman). Both fight through their dreary day-to-day lives attempting to control the irrational impulses that lie within them. Justly awarded the World Cinema Directing Award at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, Considine’s film demonstrates his incredible insight into the lives of ordinary individuals as well as his impeccable ability to convey universal feelings.
While the entire cast give excellent performances, mention must be made of Olivia Colman (Peep Show, Green Wing), who stands out in her portrayal of protagonist, Hannah. In her first leading role in a dramatic film, she shows a wonderful range, perfectly capturing the inner-conflict and turmoil of her character. Colman’s performance may be far from perfect, in the traditional cinematic sense, but more importantly it is real and full of feeling.
At times shocking Tyrannosaur challenges the viewer with its undeniably bleak outlook on life. It is though an extraordinarily powerful and moving film, which, while refusing to entertain any standard notions of hope, brings us to an understanding of the importance of relationships.
REVIEWED AT CAMEO