Rent Better Things (2008)

2.9 of 5 from 60 ratings
1h 33min
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Better Things is a multi narrative drama depicting everyday life in small town England. We follow several characters dealing in their own particular way with their relationships. As a day dawns in the Cotswolds a funeral is taking place that will have bitter repercussions for some of the community. Close by Rachel and Larry are reeling against a first love gone wrong. Meanwhile Mr Gladwin refuses to speak to Mrs Gladwin over events of a long time ago.
Following on from his multi award winning and critically acclaimed short films Duane Hopkins presents a painterly view of existence against a rarely seen rural backdrop and its separate generation's approach to life, love, loss and intoxication.
Rachel McIntyre, , Liam McIlfatrick, Che Corr, , Jane Foxhall, Tara Ballard, Betty Bench, Frank Bench, , Byndley Hutt, Lillian Hutt, Kurt Taylor, Megan Palmer, Katie Samuels
Duane Hopkins
Soda Pictures
British Films, Drama
Release Date:
Run Time:
93 minutes
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.78:1 / 16:9
  • Short Films: Field and Love Me Or Leave Me Alone
  • Director Interview

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Reviews (1) of Better Things

Better Things - Duane Hopkins (2008) - Better Things review by NA

Spoiler Alert

Better Things follows the lives of a group of teenagers in a depressed seaside town as they struggle through life after a close friend dies.

I loved how the actors here all fitted the setting. They aren't the pretty hollywood types, they're real people. But that is also the problem with its performances. They are at times believable, but at others odd and lifeless. Put that alongside the greys, and blues and generally cold atmosphere and you get a very cold film which even in its most intimate moments still feels distant, passive and fabricated.

After a while, it becomes clear that this is all intentional, but the reasons why never emerge from the sea of passive's just another sub-Haneke film doling out an emotional glaciation that it doesn't care to examine or comment on.

Grim, grim, grim and unhelpful. Hopkins seemed to please the critics with his debut and tout it as the future of social realism but I much preferred his follow up; which did actually go deeper and give us something new and insightful in those terms.

This, nah.


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