An on-going discussion regarding the best movie watched in 2011, Looking for Eric is likely the one. This was a year of excellent movies viewed, including Up, Whip It, The King’s Speech, Mary and Max, Bridesmaids, Beginners, Boy (a very close second), Exit Through the Gift Shop (a near tie with LFE), Fish Tank and TiMER), so why does Looking for Eric stand out?
You experience every emotion as you watch. Looking for Eric delves into depression, camaraderie and friendship, love lost, complicated family issues, divorce, redemption, honesty, new love, violence, sports, lost dreams and discovering you can change a lousy existence.
Our postal carrier protagonist Eric (Steve Evets) is a broken man. Two failed marriages, two unruly step-sons and three decades of regret. Eric keeps his mess to himself, that is until he starts having visions of his favorite footballer—former Manchester United player Eric Cantona. Cantona pushes Eric to revisit the mistakes he’s made and share his struggles instead of keeping them to himself. He encourages Eric to own up, open up and make changes.
This is a complex and layered story as Eric holds onto a huge regret that he cannot surpass. He has a miserable relationship with his two step-sons, Ryan (Gerard Kearns) and Jess (Stefan Gumbs). The only sunshine in his life are his daughter, Sam (Lucy-Jo Hudson), his granddaughter, Daisy (Cole and Dylan Williams) and his favorite team Manchester United and footballer Eric “King Eric” Cantona. As the world conspires to push Eric out of his comfort zone with his step-son, Ryan, his first ex-wife Lily (Stephanie Bishop) who he hasn’t seen in 30 years and a local thug, Zac (Steve Marsh), who threatens his family, Eric will come out transformed but will he find himself and win back his life? (Tip: View with subtitles to ensure you don’t miss any of the good stuff. Otherwise, they speak 2 fast, 2 furious, and with very strong accents.)
Director: Ken Loach
Genre: Drama + Comedy
Run time: 116 minutes