The great classic that never was, Once Upon a Time in the Midlands boasted the Britain’s biggest directing talent, Shane Meadows, alongside its finest actors – Robert Carlyle, Rhys Ifans and Kathy Burke. The tale, a modern Western set in Nottingham, promised to be a breath of fresh air. Sadly, despite some lovely acting, it all ended up a bit stale. Meadows possesses an undoubted gift for capturing bottled-up emotions and their explosive release, but it doesn’t stretch to bittersweet comedy. Despite the introduction of Mr Bittersweet himself, Ricky Tomlinson, and the acting range of the cast, the film swerves wildly down the hill on which much of the action is set.…
The latest film by Shane Meadows, Once Upon A Time in the Midlands, starring Kathy as Carol goes on general release. Filmed in Meadows’ home city of Nottingham between September and October 2001, the film is an updated homage to Sergio Leone’s legendary Western Once Upon a Time in the West. Kathy plays the sister of the main character Jimmy (Robert Carlyle) who arrives back in town to win the hand of his old girlfriend Shirely (Shirley Henderson). Ricky Tomlinson starring as Carol’s estranged husband and Rhys Ifans plays the unlucky loser in love. Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer pop up as kung-fu clowns.