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Jellyfish (2018)

3.6 of 5 from 50 ratings
1h 41min
Not released
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Synopsis:
Fifteen-year-old Sarah Taylor (Liv Hill) exists in the eye of the storm. The sole caretaker of her family, including precocious twin siblings and a manic-depressive mother who spends most of her time in bed, Sarah runs from school to home to work each and every day. Yet, despite her Herculean efforts to put food on the table and keep the electricity on, she is still forced to engage with more dehumanizing ways to make a few extra bucks-so it's no wonder that her back is up among her peers at school. Jellyfish tells the story of Sarah's discovery of an unexpected outlet for her frustration and quick-tempered wit: stand-up comedy.
First-time feature film director James Gardner paints a dark and hard-edged picture of life in this grey seaside British town, and, in newcomer Liv Hill, he uncovers a revelatory talent. Thanks to her fiercely evocative and vulnerable depiction of Sarah, Hill gives the audience truly remarkable insight into a young woman living a life far beyond her years.
Actors:
, , , , , , , , Jemima Newman, , , , , , , , Lee David Brown, , , Meredith Ryder
Directors:
James Gardner
Writers:
James Gardner, Simon Lord
Genres:
British Films, Drama
Countries:
UK
BBFC:
Release Date:
Not released
Run Time:
101 minutes

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Reviews (2) of Jellyfish

One girl stands up against it all - Jellyfish review by JE

Spoiler Alert
23/10/2020

This film is important and deserves to be more widely known. Liv Hill plays a 15-year-old who keeps her family together, in the face of the hostility of our country toward the poor, she fights to keep her brother and sister above the situation we placed them in. This is not a dark and hard-edged portrait but an honest and open one. It is not a film about a girl discovering a talent for stand-up comedy, more it is a film about the life that drives her into despair and her outlet from it. Liv Hill is brilliant beyond words. This is peerless acting in the most difficult material any young actress could openly express. The saddest part is that this film doesn’t exaggerate. Life is like this in the UK, cut off at the bottom and vilified for being poor, this film captures society’s contempt for its victims. If you are put off by this review, watch it anyway, you’ll find warmth and humanity where you don’t expect and recognise the dignity of the individual amidst the poverty that the British state forces on people.  

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Interesting & Relevant British Drama - Jellyfish review by GI

Spoiler Alert
09/04/2021

British social drama that highlights the plight of young people forced into becoming the main carers in their family. This story follows 15 year old Sarah (Liv Hill) who is angry yet quick witted and intelligent. Her mother (Sinead Matthews) is a manic depressive and thoroughly unreliable spending most of her time in bed. Sarah cares for her two younger twin siblings, feeding them and getting them to school while trying to go to school herself and holding down a crap job at an amusement arcade to pay for food and bills. The money isn't enough and she is forced into providing sexual favours for the seedy old men who frequent the arcade. Her drama teacher (Cyril Nri) sees some talent for comedy in her and encourages her to write and perform for the school show but her family problems are forever stifling her life. Like alll such dramas this is powerful stuff and has some uncomfortable scenes although director James Gardner rightly avoids explicit visuals to focus on the after effects on Sarah. Liv Hill gives a strong performance with the emotional turmoil she faces clearly evident. Set in Margate this does exhibit the somewhat out of date and griminess of British seaside towns which may come across as a little clichéd but overall this is a film worth checking out.

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