Sightseers review by Alyse Garner - Cinema Paradiso
With a start so washed out and down beat I thought I was watching a Mike Leigh film Sightseers is a British black comedy about a couple whose first trip away together turns into a bizarre killing spree.
The film begins with Tina at home with her mother who is grieving audibly for their dearly departed dog, Poppy, who has died in some kind of accident that she holds Tina responsible for. Soon Chris, Tina’s new beau, arrives and the two head off on a caravan holiday of England, much against her mother’s wishes.
However a second accident in which the couple kill an irritating tourist causes Chris to realise that he can bump off anyone who annoys him and from there the two travel the country, killing and making love.
A weirdly muted Bonnie and Clyde style story Sightseers has some really great moments to it, the performances are very good whilst the story, though a little slow in places, in certainly an unusual one. The comparison to the aforementioned bank robbing anti-heroes ends very swiftly however as combined Tina and Chris have about as much charisma as an old teabag; yet this is part of what makes their little story so strangely enjoyable. You don’t particularly like the characters yet through their deeds you begin to understand them and see them fulfilling long ignored desires and needs.
Unfortunately however there isn’t quite enough clout to the story to keep it going all the way through – despite the film’s short runtime there’s a notable sag in the middle – whilst the various kills roll slowly towards the climax rather than building tension as they occur. All in all Sightseers is certainly different and in this it is quite refreshing, however it’s just not quite enough to really hit its target.