Blue Story: More than one star is born in this sensational debut
Review: Rapman directs a streetwise young cast in this London take on Boyz n the Hood
Postcode of honour: Micheal Ward and Stephen Odubola in Blue Story
Film Title: Blue Story
Starring: Stephen Odubala, Micheal Ward, Karla-Simone Spence, Rohan Nedd, Kadeem Ramsay, Khali Best, Junior Afolabi Salokun, Eric Kofi Abrefa , Andre Dwayne, Hannah Lee
Running Time: 92 min
YouTube star Rapman – aka Andrew Onwubolu – makes a sensational directorial debut with Blue Story, a moving, urgent, energetic drama inspired by south London’s postcode gang rivalries.
Made with the not inconsiderable backing of BBC Films and Paramount Pictures, and inspired by events from Rapman’s own childhood, the film follows London teenagers Timmy (the director’s son Stephen Odubola making an auspicious debut of his own) and Marco (Top Boy’s Micheal Ward), two firm friends who are as close as brothers but, crucially, hail from different postcodes.
Marco is the brasher of the pair, Timmy more studious and soulful. Marco is casual with girls; Timmy falls hard for his first girlfriend Leah (Spence). The chums seem to be heading down different paths when a series of tit-for-tat exchanges sucks everyone into a cycle of violence. Do believe the hype. Rapman made a huge splash last year when his web series Shiro’s Story attracted millions of viewers, including Jeffrey Katzenberg and Jay-Z. Watching Blue Story, it’s easy to see why Hollywood has come a-courting.
Blue Story - official trailer
Favourable comparisons with John Singleton’s seminal Boyz n the Hood are warranted, but Rapman’s intermittent appearances as a one-man Greek chorus make for a unique and innovative viewing experience. Simon Stolland’s camerawork is as nimble as Mdhamiri Á Nkemi’s edits.
The fresh young cast are excellent. They might be chatting about Stormzy and Game of Thrones, but the denouement is nothing short of Shakespearean.
More than one star is born in Blue Story.