‘Attack the Block’ Review

Director: Joe Cornish

Starring: Jodie Whitaker, John Boyega, Nick Frost

Plot: A group of teen thugs mug a woman on her way home, only to witness an alien crashing to Earth. Killing it, they unleash an invasion of deadly creatures and must defend their block from the savage creatures. They are forced to team-up with the their mugging victim along with a local stoner whilst both police and another hoodlum are tracking them down.

Review: The producers of ‘Shaun of the Dead’ clearly have an eye for talent. They elevated Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright from television to Hollywood A-List with one feature, and now they’ve delivered a new raft of skill with ‘Attack the Block’. Writer/Director Joe Cornish has been lifted from practical obscurity to deliver this gem before moving onto script duties on Spielberg’s ‘The Adventures of Tintin’ and ‘Ant-Man’.

Cornish clearly grew up in the 1980’s era of adventure films. Echoes of The Goonies and similar films are clearly heard – if you want to add a dose of blood and swearing in for good measure. Attack the Block takes the ‘group of kids fight of aliens’ framework and sets it in the London projects with a gang of teen thugs defending their block from the intruders. The young cast nail the material, all charismatic and suitably cast there is plenty of new talent on display who are no doubt getting phone calls from talent agencies. Plus – Nick Frost pops in for a small role, and that’s always welcome.

Although the aliens aren’t going to make the Hall of Fame in terms of creature design they are original. It’s refreshing to see a departure from the standard look. Not sure about the noise they make, though.

Just because it stars kids and is a clear throw-back to family friendly adventure films of yesterdecade, this is not specifically made for young viewers. The action is fast paced and occasionally quite violent with a couple of mild scares – and awesomely directed. The comedy also hits the mark, with plenty of genuine laughs

For some reason the Australian release is very late – don’t expect to see it on our shores before December. Try and locate an import copy if you can: it’s worth it.  Not to sound too preachy, but this is a low budget indie film so try and avoid the urge to pirate.