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A scene from Good Vibrations.
A scene from Good Vibrations.

Good Vibrations: A feel-good, punk-flavoured biopic set in 1970s Belfast Add to ...

  • Directed by Lisa Barros D’Sa, Glenn Leyburn
  • Written by Colin Carberry, Glenn Patterson
  • Starring Richard Dormer, Jodie Whittaker
  • Classification 14A
  • Year 2012
  • Country U.K., Ireland
  • Language English

Good Vibrations is not about the Beach Boys. At all.

Instead it is a beery, warm-hearted biopic on Terri Hooley, the shaggy idealist and shambolic entrepreneur who in the mid-1970s started up a record shop (and later a plucky record label) in Belfast. Hooley, a pacifist who took no sides in the Troubles of Northern Ireland, believed in the revolutionary power of the seven-inch record and that “any proper record collection should have a track for every moment.”

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The sound and energy of this likeable film is punk music. Hooley, charmingly portrayed as a laudable but flawed character by Richard Dormer, fosters a nascent scene that gave rise to the Undertones and Rudi and the Outcasts.

Rather than getting too deep into a study of Hooley, directors Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn have crafted a feel-good comedy in the soulful vein of The Commitments. It’s about the beat and the community – good vibrations, to put it another way.

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