Sunshine on Leith: 'Love song to Scotland'
- 18 September 2013
- From the section Scotland
Sunshine on Leith, a new film featuring the music of Scottish band The Proclaimers, has had its premiere in Edinburgh.
You could quibble with the geography, and that while there's plenty of sunshine, it's not always shining on Leith. You could pick holes in the accent or a script which often cues song lyrics way before the characters burst into song.
But it's all forgivable with such a fantastically, upbeat, joyous love song to Scotland.
Like the stage show on which it is based, the story is loosely wrapped around a selection of songs by The Proclaimers.
Thus the central characters - two returning soldiers - start their new lives post army with a rousing chorus of "I'm on my way".
One is encouraged to propose to his girlfriend in a raucous rendition of Let's Get Married.
And yes, one character does consider a new career in Florida, provoking an all-cast performance of Letter From America.
But it's less cheesy than you'd think. The natural performances of the young cast - and wide eyed encouragement of hundreds of extras - lending it all a charm and loveliness lacking in so many bigger budget movies.
It's not all sunshine, though, and the drama is beautifully handled by both Jane Horrocks - a veteran of musical performance - and Peter Mullan - who's not.
Despite that, his growling vocals are a high point of the film, the sort of natural bursting into song we'd all like to think ourselves capable of.
The closing scenes involving a 500-strong, all-singing, all-dancing chorus, singing what else but 500 Miles, is probably worth the ticket price alone.
The only question? In such a joyous, song-filled sunny city, why would anyone want to leave?
Sunshine on Leith is on general release on 4 October.