Sean Bean stars as equally Sheffield United-mad brewery worker Jimmy
Muir, a talented footballer who was let down by authority figures as a
young man. After ten years working a dead-end job the frustrated Muir
meets Annie Doherty, a pretty Irish love interest played by English
actress Emily Lloyd, and soon after gets the second chance at his dream
that such people always seem to get in these modern fairy tales. Yes,
the formulaic plot is predictable and clichéd, but it is still
enjoyable to watch and there are quite a few touching moments.
Funnily enough, although this is a football film I felt one of the strongest aspects of the film was the way it dealt with the personal relationships between Jimmy and his family members and friends: Pete Postlethwaite, for example, playing Jimmy's mentor Ken Jackson, puts in a strong, convincing performance, as well as John McEnery as Jimmy's abusive father Joe. A subtle side-track detailing Joe's past and its relevance to Jimmy's present is cleverly done and is to me an important part of the film's overall message.
Unusually for a sports film, the actual football is very well done. Director Maria Giese manages to do what so few directors have before or since in getting both the match itself and the atmosphere right. Every game portrayed is totally believable, from the park football at the beginning to the climactic final match at the end. Giese should really be commended here; each match is very different and she gets the overall feel of each one at least very close to spot on.
One criticism I will give the film, however, is its ending, which seems incredibly rushed and not really believable -- I know I said before that this is a fairy tale but watch the film and I'm sure you will see what I mean. I think that if you cut out ten minutes from earlier in the film and add a few more minutes of action just before the film's climax, the movie would work a lot better. It just seems very sudden to me, that's all.
Nevertheless, "When Saturday Comes" is an enjoyable watch, especially if you're a football fan. By no means brilliant, but still well worth the night in. 7/10.
Jimmy Muir is a hard-drinking brewery worker in the city of Sheffield, with an arrogant lack of respect for authority. His entire life has been orientated by football and he possesses the potential, but has never had the courage or discipline to make anything of it. Jimmy is spotted by Ken Jackson, whilst playing for his pub team. Ken is the manager of Hallam football club, a local non-league team. After continually playing brilliantly for Hallam, Jimmy gets offered a trial at Sheffield United. The evening before the trial he gets drunk, and wakes up feeling very rough. Consequently he fails to impress the Sheffield United manager. Jimmy then has to consider his future and his choices and if he has the self discipline to succeed!
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