Film: Videowatch - Human Traffic (18) to rent

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The Independent Culture
Human Traffic (18) to rent

FUNNIER, BRIGHTER and more assured than any self-consciously "yoof" film has a right to be, Justin Kerrigan's debut feature bundles you off your feet within the first five minutes and never lets up.

If they've got anything to do with it, Jip and his assorted bunch of mates make sure that every weekend is lost, and one such typical bender in grim old Cardiff provides Kerrigan with his straightforward plot. Between knocking-off time on Friday and coming-down time 48 hours later, though, Kerrigan attacks his portrait of the chemical generation with cartoon abandon.

John Simm leads a hugely appealing cast of relative unknowns, only occasionally burdened by the task of speaking with the "voice of a generation". Notwithstanding the odd earnest lapse, Kerrigan also delivers an adroit sketch of the socio-economic doldrums in which his characters find themselves becalmed. For all their excess, it's the women who appear more in control. And it's clear the weekly blow-out is a necessary escape from divorce, mental illness and family strife.