Convenience tells the story of two life long friends A.Jay (Ray Panthaki) and Shaan (Adeel Akhtar), as they find themselves in deep with some Russian gangsters and a very limited time to settle the £8,000 debt that Shaan has racked up.
They decide the easiest way to get the money is to rob a near-by petrol garage. Unfortunately the safe has a time-lock and won’t open until 6am the following morning.
Their only option is to tie-up the manager and a customer in the back office, pose as employees and work a shift in the petrol garage.
If this ordeal wasn’t stressful enough, they soon learn there’s another employee in the stock room. Luckily for them, Levi (Vicky McClure) thinks they’re the two new trainees that have shown up a day early. They now face the challenge of keeping Levi out the office.
It’s lack of budget doesn’t show on screen. It’s beautifully shot and is held up by a great, yet simple premise. It also hosts some impressive cameos from Anthony Head (Buffy), Tony Way (Game of Thrones) and Verne Troyer (Austin Powers) they each play odd-ball characters that A.Jay and Shann encounter on their shift.
Overall, Convenience is a great example of low budget British comedies. The film manages to capture the tedium of retail work, yet is always watchable due to a great script and stellar performances from the cast.
Listen to our interviews from the press junket here
The film see talk-show host Dave Skylark (Seth Rogen) and his producer, Aaron Rapoport (James Franco), score an exclusive interview with Kim Jong-Un, dictator of North Korea.
All goes well until the CIA ask them to assassinate him.
Judd Apatow has grown as a director. He started out doing funny-vulgar humour, like “Knocked Up” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” and producing similar comedies. Like with his last movie “funny people” Apatow has opted to not totally ignore the vulgar humour, but to intercut it with deeper subject matters, such as love, marriage, parenthood, responsibility and family, for the most part, it works.
“This is 40” is a spin-off to “knocked up” With Paul Rudd (Pete) Leslie Mann (Debbie) Maude Apatow (Sadie) and Iris Apatow (Charlotte) all reprising their roles. You may notice the absence of Katherine Heigel and Seth Rogen, this is due to Heigel very opening bashing Apatow during the press conferences for Knocked Up. Although Seth Rogen doesn’t appear, his character is mentioned.
Times are tough for the family, Sadie is going through puberty and is turning into a drama queen and they’re having huge financial difficulty. Pete’s record company is going bust and his deadbeat dad (Albert Brooks) is sponging money from him.
The first half of the movie plays out like a standard Apatow comedy, but then it goes a lot deeper and examines the characters relationships and problems. It becomes more and more interesting as the story unfolds. What’s unique about this film is, there is no obvious happy ending. The characters still annoy each other, there isn’t a quick-fix happy ever after ending, which really makes this movie stand heads and shoulders above the rest.
I enjoyed this movie and I loved catching up with these characters, but it was a little too long. Some scenes could have easily been cut, to make it run a bit smoother. With the same cast and creative team this would make an excellent HBO or Showtime series.