[Screen It]

 

"THE VAN"
(1997) (Colm Meaney, Donal O'Kelly) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Moderate Minor Moderate None None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None None None Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Mild Moderate Minor Minor Minor


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: Two men's friendship is tested when both begin working in a cramped fish and chips van.
PLOT:
Bimbo (DONAL O'KELLY) and Larry (COLM MEANEY) are two longtime friends in Ireland. While Larry is a house husband and his wife Mary (CAROLINE ROTHWELL) is getting her degree, Bimbo has recently been laid off from his job. Looking for work, he's told of a dilapidated fish and chips van, and he and Larry are soon cleaning up the rolling restaurant. Bimbo buys the van and the two men's attention becomes focused on where large groups of people congregate and they soon find themselves outside bars, rock concerts and at the beach. As the hours grow long and the quarters get more cramped, Larry and Bimbo's friendship is severely tested.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Since neither the plot nor the cast will be attractive to kids, it's not very likely.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For strong language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • COLM MEANEY plays a house husband who drinks quite a bit and soon develops a bad and nasty attitude about working for, and with, his friend.
  • DONAL O'KELLY plays an unassuming character who works hard, but nearly has an affair with a woman while intoxicated.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 4 out of 10
    This film adaption of Roddy Doyle's loosely based Barrytown trilogy isn't as satisfying as the two earlier filmed versions, "The Commitments" and "The Snapper." With actor Colm Meaney's appearance tying all three together, this is a more tightly focused personal work. It's missing the fun, however, that made the story of the Irish soul band so much fun, but it does share the heavy Irish brogue that takes some getting used to. While this is a character driven production, these characters aren't interesting enough to sustain the story, which is lacking in the interesting plot department as well. Without much happening for the characters to react to, the resulting production comes across as lackluster. A few humorous moments do occur, but the plot often lingers on scenes that do nothing for the story, such as the long and near lovingly filmed sequences of watching soccer matches. Seeming more like filler than essential plot points, these scenes steal what little momentum the movie was building. Meaney's always been a charismatic character actor, but his sour role doesn't give him much to work with other than to become more irrate as time passes by. While there's nothing really wrong with this movie, director Stephen Frears' ("Dangerous Liaisons") approach is to hope that his characters can prop up the movie. Although they're briefly interesting, they soon wear thin as will your patience for this film. For these reasons, we give the film just a 4 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Profanity, a brief "mooning" scene, and some bad attitudes are the worst of the material in this film that most kids will probably avoid. Nearly 100 "f" words are uttered along with a variety of others. There's a brief scene where a man's bare butt is seen as he playfully "moons" his wife. The men drink quite a bit, and in one scene the two try to pick up women in a bar although they're both married. The Colm Meaney character develops a bad attitude and work ethic, but beyond the above incidents, the rest of the categories have little or no major amounts of objectionable material.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Larry and Bimbo are often in a bar drinking with their friends, and in one scene most of them are rather drunk.
  • Larry and others drink wine and beer at a Christmas dinner.
  • Larry and Bimbo drink beer after pushing their broken down van, and after cleaning it.
  • People have wine at a food tasting.
  • On their night off, Larry and Bimbo are out drinking and end up at a wine bar where they drink quite a bit and have amorous intentions toward two women. As their inhibitions loosen, Larry tries to kiss a woman while Bimbo kisses the one he's with.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Bimbo has cut his finger while peeling potatoes and it, and the potato bowl, have some blood on them.
  • Larry's lip is a bit bloody after a scuffle with Bimbo.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Larry and others make fun of Bimbo's senile mother-in-law (not directly in front of her) by saying that she "smells."
  • On their night off, Larry and Bimbo are out drinking and end up at a wine bar where they drink quite a bit and have amorous intentions toward two women. As their inhibitions loosen, Larry tries to kiss a woman while Bimbo kisses the one he's with. They do this despite the fact that both men are married.
  • Also, in another scene as the men drunkenly leave a bar, a police officer asks what they're doing. One of them replies, "Waiting for your wife."
  • After two women blow off Larry's advances toward them at a bar, he calls them "lezers" (for lesbians).
  • Larry begins to get a bad attitude toward Bimbo (since he really owns the business and Larry works for him), and his work ethic gets bad.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • None.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • The guys accidentally drive over an animal in the middle of the road, killing it. While they didn't purposefully do that, the fact that Larry and his daughter, Diane, start laughing about it (really about Bimbo's reaction), might give kids the wrong idea.
  • Bimbo drives the van out into the ocean.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 94 "f" words (and Larry wears a T-shirt that has the "f" word on it), 9 "s" words, 2 slang terms for male genitals (the "p" word), 1 ass, 1 hell, and 24 uses of "Jesus," 6 of "God," 2 each of "Oh my God," "God Almighty," and "Jesus Christ," and 1 use each of "Oh Jesus," "Christ," and "Mother of God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • A woman at a bar comments about a soccer player on TV and says, "He can nail me to the bed anytime he wants."
  • Larry's bare butt is briefly seen as he playfully "moons" his wife. He then moves over and puts his head up her skirt, which is seen by their daughter (older teen or above) who quickly leaves the room.
  • A man and woman pop up in the backseat of a car that Bimbo has just sideswiped. Although nothing is seen, it's implied that they were "fooling around."
  • SMOKING
  • People smoke in the many bar scenes, including a friend of Larry and Bimbo's.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Larry and his wife have a few minor disagreements, but none of it's too bad.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Working with others, particularly friends, in such a way so that everyone gets along with each other.
  • VIOLENCE
  • The guys accidentally drive over an animal in the middle of the road, killing it.
  • Hard rock fans throw batteries at the van and then rock it back and forth after a concert.
  • Larry and Bimbo get into a scuffle with some shoving and a few punches thrown.
  • Bimbo smashes the van into the side of a parked car.



  • Reviewed May 27, 1997

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [Collateral Beauty] [La La Land] [Manchester By The Sea] [Rogue One: A Star Wars Story]

    Privacy Statement and Terms of Use and Disclaimer
    By entering this site you acknowledge to having read and agreed to the above conditions.

    All Rights Reserved,
    ©1996-2017 Screen It, Inc.