‚It’s a filthy job getting to the top but somebody’s got to do it.’
Everybody looses control at least once in their lifetime, right? Everybody is hiding a dark spot of their personality, correct? Everyone is modified by the judgement of society, yes? You are the audience – the society on the big screen. Come and meet Bruce.
Based on Irvine Welsh’s novel, this film is bound to be compared to the cultic ‘Trainspotting’. ‘Filth’ has only just been in the cinemas around the UK, but definitely has already made its own name.
Our protagonist Bruce Robertson (James McAvoy) is a police officer in Scotland, slightly redefining the norm. Being in a good position to grab the promotion, he is bathing himself in security and stops at nothing to get to the top. Bruce leads us through a number of explicit, obscene situations. Drugs, Sex, Filth, Hallucinations. Throughout the film you are led to believe that our police officer is an arrogant, self-absorbed, distant and ignorant being and not really ‘going somewhere’. The questions of ‘Why?’ and ‘How?’ are omnipresent.
During a Q&A session at the Apple Store in London, James McAvoy said something like: ‘No matter how offensive your character seems, you need to make them feel for him. You need to make them fall for it.’
By the end of his newest film, I was in tears. McAvoy DID make me fall for Bruce. I DID feel for him. And I was hoping for something better for him.
Bruce Robertson isn’t just disgusting. He is a very sensible, complex character who simply lost control over his balance between right and wrong. He captures a broken personality disguised as the scum of society. You will judge him immediately for what he does and you will find it hard to understand – just like Bruce himself. Bruce is bipolar, so how could he? In spite of everything, his behaviour is a protection mechanism for what has happened to him. And by the end this protection is falling down and Bruce has nothing left.
‘Filth’ is a very disturbing film, not because of what you see but because of what you feel. It might seem paradox that something so revolting appeals to you that much. But after all, you are the audience and you judge. And you bloody love it.