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TIFF 2013 Review: Sunshine on Leith


Sunshine on Leith
Special Presentation

In what has to be the most fabulously fun film at the festival this year, the Scottish musical Sunshine on Leith is infectious and irresistible. Adapted from a stage production based on the music of The Proclaimers, this crowd-pleaser will sure you get you moving in your seat and hanging on every sung syllable.

The musical set pieces come in welcome waves as we follow two young men returning from war and three relationships at very different points in their evolution. Davy (George MacKay) and Ally (Kevin Guthrie) are excited to see home Edinburgh; from the beautiful cinematography, they’ve good reason.

It also helps that Davy is reconnects with his loving family, including the fair-skinned and red-haired Liz, his sister as well as Ally’s girlfriend. As that couple looks to rekindle their relationship and perhaps glance at the future, Davy strikes up a romance with Liz’s friend Yvonne  – even though she is English. Meanwhile, Davy’s parents, celebrating their 25th anniversary, are forced to deal with a past discretion.

There is just the right amount time spent with each couple to not only care but understand their situations – they’re not universal, but surely familiar. Perhaps it’s the singing and dancing, the accents, or simply that the characters seem so genuine, idealistic, and lovely that you can’t help but fall for everything in this feel-great film.

The best is saved for last, of course, in a wondrous finale that will bring swell your heart and wet your eyes.

[star v=4]

Anthony Marcusa

A pop-culture consumer, Anthony seeks out what is important in entertainment and mocks what is not. Inspired by history, Anthony writes with the hope that someone, somewhere, might be affected.