Le Donk & Scor-zay-zee
Shane Meadows mock-doc
After the relative extravagance of his 80s-set skinhead film This is England, Shane Meadows returns to his roots with this mock-rockumentary road movie made in the spirit of the low-fi, no-budget shorts with which the Midlands-born filmmaker began his impressive career.
Meadows’ latest was actually made to launch, by example, a new five-day filmmaking scheme being set up by the director in conjunction with the new-ish film production arm of Warp Records. In keeping with the working week shooting schedule, Meadows and his mate and regular lead Paddy Considine started filming with nothing more than a character, loutish rock band roadie Le Donk, and the idea of making a moc-doc (in which Meadows plays himself to nice self-referential effect).
As filming commenced in the boys’ home turf Meadows chanced on local rapper Scor-zay-zee (as in the guy who made Goodfellas), who turned out to be such a musical and comic gift they used him to shape a storyline involving Le Donk taking the lad on the road to an Arctic Monkeys concert with the hope of combining roadie-ing with breaking a new talent.
In a fortunate turn of events that further blurs the line between fact and fiction, Alex Turner and the rest of the Monkeys caught Scor-zay-zee performing a cheeky pre-soundcheck rap and ended up asking him and Le Donk to open their show.
All of which is wonderfully serendipitous, but nevertheless is no guarantee of a good film. Thankfully, another enjoyably eccentric characterisation from Considine, here playing an obnoxious tosser with delusions of grandeur, a few priceless moments from the strangely sphinx-like Scor-zay-zee, and Meadows’ sure sense for improvisation and natural gift with daft humour makes this mock-rock-doc a real laugh-out-loud pleasure. Comparisons to This is Spinal Tap are wholly justified.