Jason Solomons

The Observer, Sunday 18th May 2008

  …Another British talent unveiled was Duane Hopkins, whose debut Better Things unfolds in photographic compositions rather than dramatic scenes. It’s a painful portrait of a fractured Cotswolds community, though not the one on the postcards. Hopkins version is a world of teenage heroin addicts shooting up and driving too fast down country lanes, and sad, elderly folk staring out of windows. Using non-professional actors and unknown faces, the film’s effect is gradual and numbing.

Source | The Observer

Peter Bradshaw 

The Guardian, Monday 19th May 2008

…The British contingent [at Cannes] continues to be strong. Duane Hopkins’ debut feature Better Things, about a group of young people suffering from the tragic aftershocks of drug addiction, was in the social-realist mode. It has a bold and brilliant insight at its heart: the alienated young are like the very old. Marginalised and depressed, yearning for love but deeply vulnerable to the pain it causes. Hopkins’ characters live barricaded lives, not dissimilar from the old people we glimpse in their silent houses and care homes, still living with memories as fresh as peeled wounds.

Source | The Guardian