God Help the Girl looks set to be a gift to Belle and Sebastian fans

God Help the Girl looks set to be a gift to Belle and Sebastian fans

Stuart Murdoch's much-anticipated film project stars Emily Browning, Olly Alexander and Hannah Murray

It’s a good summer for Belle and Sebastian fans. Not only is the Glaswegian indie pop group kicking off the Commonwealth Games festivities with a gig in the recently restored Kelvingrove Bandstand (Wed 23 Jul) but the much-anticipated film God Help the Girl from frontman Stuart Murdoch also reaches cinemas.

Some might remember that the God Help the Girl project initially took the form of a girl group singing songs written by Murdoch. A self-titled album was released in 2009, and shooting for the film started a few years later in 2012. Described as a ‘musical feature’ (expect plenty of songs, of course), it stars actors Emily Browning, Olly Alexander and Hannah Murray in a story about a girl called Eve who starts writing songs after being released from hospital where she was been dealing with mental health issues.

The film premiered at the Sundance Festival in January, with the Guardian’s Xan Brooks saying ‘If you're a fan of Murdoch’s whimsical, maundering music then no doubt you’ll relish his whimsical, maundering picture.’ It looks like God Help the Girl is set to delight Belle and Sebastian fans.

The feature itself is released in late August, but there are a handful of preview screenings taking place at the Glasgow Film Theatre before then, with one offering the chance to pose questions to Stuart Murdoch about the making of the film.

GFT, Glasgow, Sat 16–Thu 28 Aug (not 18, 19, 20, 21). The screening on Sat 16 Aug is accompanied by a live satellite performance and the screening on Sun 17 Aug will be followed by a Q&A with Stuart Murdoch and cast from the film. On selected release from Fri 22 Aug.

God Help the Girl

  • 3 stars
  • 2013
  • UK
  • 1h 51min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Stuart Murdoch
  • Written by: Stuart Murdoch
  • Cast: Olly Alexander, Hannah Murray, Pierre Boulanger
  • UK release: 22 August 2014

Eve (Browning), battling her way back from depression and chronic anorexia, starts to write songs as a way of dealing with her feelings. The first film written and directed by Belle and Sebastian's Murdoch is a twee, whimsical love letter to Glasgow which, luckily, has charm and sincerity on its side.