The Festival Blu-ray/DVD/Download

Friday, 04 January 2019 13:23

“The Festival” is a comedy movie from the creators of The Inbetweeners about a couple of mates who attend a massive music festival after their graduation. Mopey Nick (Joe Thomas – “The Inbetweeners Movie”, White Gold) has just suffered a painful breakup and is dragged along by his enthusiastic best buddy Shane (Hammed Animashaun – Black Mirror, Flowers), whose dream is to get backstage with superstar DJ Hammerhead.

On the way the duo meets Amy (Claudia O’Doherty – “Trainwreck”, “The Inbetweeners 2”), an Aussie with verbal diarrhoea who is desperate to meet new friends. After an eventful journey they arrive at the festival site, only to awkwardly bump into Nick’s ex, Caitlin (Hannah Tointon – Hollyoaks, “The Children”). Expect mud, mayhem, music and MDMA as festival life results in some wild and outlandish encounters.

As someone who has not watched The Inbetweeners or its big screen spin-offs, it took me a little while to warm to this film. Much of the humour is of the puerile, toilet variety, and some of the gags outstay their welcome such that they can become grating. However, there is so much bouncy energy and colour on display that I got quite sucked in.

Nick is written to be an annoying killjoy so it is difficult to get behind him; when he suffers (and boy does he suffer!) we laugh at his expense. Shane is a much warmer character who balances things out, with Amy swaying between insufferable and amiably naïve.

The plot is fairly predictable but every now and then it avoids a cliché rather than hitting it head-on, keeping proceedings from getting too stuck in a dirty rut. Cameos from Nick Frost and Noel Fielding add a bit of star quality, with the latter’s scenes amongst the funniest in the movie.

The soundtrack is quite eclectic, with each tune emphasising a plot point. Not a lot of live music performance footage is used but plenty of clips taken of attendees at Leeds Festival in 2017 give the film a more real, less staged vibe.

By the end of the movie I found I had been reasonably entertained, and I acknowledge I am probably not in the primary target market so credit to the makers for getting me on-side.

The sole special feature on the disc is a brief VFX montage which I initially thought was a strange addition to a film like this but when you see it, you will appreciate how subtle effects were used to either increase the crowd numbers in the festival long shots, or fill in green-screen footage between the actors and the festival goers. It is mightily impressive in its transparency.

"The Festival" (2018) is released on 10 December 2018 Blu-ray, DVD and VOD, courtesy of Entertainment in Video. The main feature has a running time of 98 minutes approx., carries an '15' certificate and retails for £12.99 on DVD, £14.99 on Blu-ray, or less from


Last modified on Monday, 04 March 2019 13:41

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