.

Riff Raff

Spencer Tracy

Directed by J. Walter Ruben
Rolling Stone: star rating
5 0
Community: star rating
5 0 0
April 11, 2001

Since the Sixties, British director Ken Loach has been making films (Kes, Family Life) about the diminished options of the working class. His low-key style and avoidance of stars have left him a well-kept movie secret. Riff-raff won't bring in the Terminator crowd, but it cements his reputation as a world-class filmmaker.

Riff-raff is set in a shabby London construction site where a motley crew of immigrants and hard cases uses humor as a weapon against backbreaking work and bosses. The accents are so thick that Bill Jesse's script has been fitted with subtitles. You don't have to catch every word to sense the rage beneath the comic riffs. Or to sniff the doom hanging over the relationship between Stevie (Robert Carlyle), an ex-con from Glasgow, and Susan (Emer McCourt), a junkie singer. Loach's vision, cutting and compassionate, makes Riff-raff black comedy of a high order.

prev
Movie Review Main Next

ADD A COMMENT

Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...

COMMENTS

Sort by:
    Read More

    Movie Reviews

    • joe Nicolas Cage
      star rating
      Roadside Attractions
    • star rating
      Summit Entertainment
    • star rating
      Paramount Pictures
    More Reviews »
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.

    X

    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Bizness”

    Tune-Yards | 2011

    The opening track to Merrill Garbus’ second album under the Tune-Yards banner (she also plays in the trio Sister Suvi), “Bizness” is a song about relationships that is as colorful as the face paint favored by Garbus both live and in her videos. Disjointed funk bass, skittering African beats, diced-and-sliced horns and Garbus’ dynamic voice, which ranges from playful coos to throat-shredding howls, make “Bizness” reminiscent of another creative medium. “I'd like for them not to be songs as much as quilts or collages or something,” Garbus said.

    More Song Stories entries »
    www.expandtheroom.com