Sixty Six (12A)

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The ViewBirmingham Review

StarStarStarStarNo Star
Review byMatthew Turner01/11/2006

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 93 mins

Delightful coming of age comedy with a terrific cast, a superb script and a genuinely moving finale – it really is the feel-good movie of the year.

What's it all about?
Newcomer Gregg Sulkin plays 12 year-old Jewish boy Bernie Reubens, who spends every waking moment planning a lavish Bar Mitzvah party, for the day when he'll become a man. However, his plans take a severe knocking when he realises that his longed-for Bar Mitzvah clashes with the 1966 World Cup final and, worse, his parents (Helena Bonham Carter and Eddie Marsan) refuse to change the date because they don't believe England will get through.

As if that wasn't bad enough, Bernie's parents are neglecting him because they're worried about losing their grocery business to a newly opened supermarket. In desperation, Bernie divides his time between making voodoo dolls of the England team and confiding in his asthma specialist, Dr Barrie (Stephen Rea).

The Good
Sixty Six carries the subtitle A True… ish Story and is partly based on director Paul Weiland's own 1966 Bar Mitzvah. The script is superb, brimming with period detail and pulling off the same trick as The Squid and the Whale, in that it makes you laugh and cry at the same time.

Sulkin is superb as Bernie, more than holding his own against an accomplished cast and making you really root for him, even if that means taking side against the England team. There's also terrific support from the likes of Peter Serafinowicz and the ubiquitous Catherine Tate as Bernie's uncle and aunt, whilst Helena Bonham Carter and Eddie Marsan give moving performances as his beleagured parents.

The Great
There are some delightful scenes. Highlights include Bernie's frequent visits to his friend's house (and his conversations with his friend's busty Welsh mother) and a genuinely crowd-pleasing finale that somehow avoids the mushiness of similar Working Title moments.

Worth seeing?
A thoroughly enjoyable, genuinely funny and ultimately moving feel-good movie. Highly recommended.

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Sixty Six (12A)
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Content updated: 23/10/2017 23:38

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