A damaged and angry young woman from the British lower class has the second-worst mother in recent films (after Mo’Nique’s role in Precious). She dreams of dancing her way out of the neighborhood in a talent contest. Then her mother brings home a new boyfriend who kindles new feelings in the teen. This development culminates in a scene where she dances to the Bobby Womack version of California Dreamin‘ while the audience holds its breath.
In her first film role, Katie Jarvis plays the girl; Jarvis was discovered by the filmmakers during a sidewalk argument with her boyfriend that convinced them that she could muster the sustained rage (and foul mouth) required by the role. Michael Fassbender is excellent as the mother’s new boyfriend.
It’s on my list of Best Movies of 2010 – So Far.