Thursday, 12 June 2014

SHORT REVIEW: Knocked For Six/ Save Your Legs (2014)

This short review appears on The Upcoming website here.

Knocked For Six is an Australian comedy about a group of cricketers who go on tour in India. Inspired by true events, the film follows Teddy, the president of an amateur cricket group, who brings his team to India to play in a tournament. Teddy soon realizes that his two best players, Ricky and Stav, are moving on and are now more interested in their families than in the game. Faced with much better Indian teams and with his own players considering the trip a mere holiday away from their families, how can Teddy convince them to win?

The film is based on director Boyd Hicklin’s 2005 documentary Save Your Legs and the story is mildly interesting but wholly unbelievable. Outlandish as the true events may originally have been, Knocked For Six throws in too much and gives itself too little time. We get to know only five of the eleven-man team (the rest feel like extras) and the film stretches itself too far with one Orientalist drug scene and a slightly desperate Bollywood dance number at the end. Elsewhere, the film feels either badly thought-out or heavily cut. The villain, for instance, is introduced over half way through.

Knocked For Six is very much a ‘man child’ comedy and the film has quite a few diarrhoea and vomit jokes thanks to Teddy’s inability to deal with Indian food. These moments aside, Knocked For Six is a reasonably pleasant though overly masculine comedy about men leaving to one side their childhood dreams and becoming reasonable adults. The script is not particularly new and the threadbare story really could have up the stakes much more, but there is a decent feeling of fun and camaraderie about the film that makes it reasonably entertaining.

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