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View All Local Hero News
All Critics (33)
| Top Critics (7)
| Fresh (33)
| Rotten (0)
| DVD (3)
Lancaster gets better with age; he is capital as the magnate with equal passions for astronomy and moneymaking. Peter Riegert is effective as his ambassador, and the Scottish actors are refreshing and adept.
Writer-director Bill Forsyth's 1983 film sneaks up on you. It takes its time. It reveals its characters through snippets of conversation and casual interactions.
The thematics are rather cloying, but the mood -- profoundly relaxed, bemused -- eventually conquers.
[It's] loaded with wry, offbeat humor and is the sort of satisfying, personal picture that is becoming an increasingly rare commodity these days
Forsyth cannot quite tease out of his characters the kind of strange sublety that Powell and Pressburger delivered, but it is enough that he and producer David Puttnam succeed in making you realise just how badly this kind of film has been missed.
Here is a small film to treasure, a loving, funny, understated portrait of a small Scottish town and its encounter with a giant oil company.
A poignant, funny tale of a simpler life.
Without question, the most charming British film of the 1980s.
Bill Forsyth directs the film with wry understatement and has gentle affection for all of his characters.
It's the feel-good flick of the decade.
A heartwarming and whimsical comedy of manners.
Charming, whimsical, and practically perfect.
A taste of the quaint life of rural Scotland back in the early 80s when the oil giants were still considered a necessary evil. This really is a British classic with memorable characters and a signature theme tune in Mark Knopfler's synth score.
I really cannot praise Local Hero enough; it is simply one of the best films ever made and certainly, without any shadow of doubt, my number one favourite movie of all time. Fans of Ealing Comedy will relate to this film instantly. The humour is extremely subtle, going for the quirkiness of human behaviour rather than prefabricated belly-laughs. For example, the two farmers arguing which is the better vehicle for transporting winter lambs, Massarati or Rolls Royce. And the African preacher who has to explain that he's "not Scottish either" but still has the surname McPhearson. At first glance, the story of Local Hero is hardly one which would engage fevered interest. A big Texan oil company wants to buy a huge chunk of Scottish coastline and a representative is flown over to close the deal. Chosen because it's thought he is of Scottish origin, McIntyre (Peter Riegert) complains to a colleague that he could do the deal over the wires in an afternoon and that his parents chose the surname when they got off the boat from Hungary because they thought it sounded American. But what grabs the attention and is the fundamental beauty to the film is "Mac's" journey from a materialistic Texan yuppie to one who falls in love with the simple things of life and by the film's end, when Mac returns home, has been changed forever by his trip.
Mac plays his part very well from a character who depends on his expensive suits, his Porsche, quad hi-fi and personal health insurance to one who collects shells on a Scottish beach and drinks 40 year-old malt whisky in the bosom of the small community that he suddenly finds himself a part of. Burt Lancaster plays the wonderfully eccentric oil company CEO who is more concerned with dicovering a comet of his own than making millions of dollars. Then of course there is Denis Lawson as the estate agent / taxi driver / hotelier, Peter Capaldi as the bungling company trainee and Jenny Seagrove who prefers being underwater to life on land, along with all the various yokels and locals that give this film its very unique charm. And the plot twist? A fabulously subtle one-liner that gives the whole thing away. But of course, one cannot talk about this movie without mentioning the soundtrack. Many years ago I felt compelled to watch this movie because (being a big Dire Straits fan at the time) i had the soundtrack and was instantly hooked. Mark Knopfler does sterling work in adding musical flavour to the film. Lazy acoustic guitars match perfectly the breath-taking scenary that the director, Bill Forsyth, has captured of the Scottish Highlands. Overall, I would have no hesitation in recommending this film to people. Every recommendation I've made has been met with the same response: a gem of a movie that simply cannot be ignored. Local Hero will be my own personal number one for ever!
Not a bad flick. We watch a fast moving Texas oil man slow down and appreciate the world around him when visiting Scotland on business and it tries to remind us that we need to slow down as well and take a good look at the things we think are the most important things in our lives.
The acting is solid and the music helps set the mood and speed of the flick perfectly.
Sometimes, even Texas oil billionaires have to stop and smell the seaweed.
A clever little morality tale about Scotland and meteor showers and women with webbed toes. This one is really starting to grow on me.
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