It is very much a passionate film, with little interest in what others might think

Falling into the same repetitive pattern for almost every release, British sitcom-style films aim to please the masses, focusing on marketability rather than looking to create something with more expression and heart. Swimming With Men, the latest picture from British filmmaker Oliver Parker brings bundles of passion, and loads itself with both feelings and compassion.

Eric (Rob Brydon) is struggling with boredom at work and confusion with his wife, leading to him moving out of the family home and reconsidering his life choices. Finding some solace in swimming, Eric takes to his local pool for refuge, but instead of relaxation he finds a group of seemingly unconnected men, learning to swim, synchronised.

Swimming With Men

Many modern health discussions are now focused around the mental side of well-being, and it often feels as if men are being left out of those conversations. Swimming With Men certainly looks to open up some questioning around that, with much of the film promoting togetherness and how, as a group, humans can aid each other through difficult times.

With such a quirky nature and varied cast, Swimming With Men puts forward clear equality and open support without forcing it or making it seem unnatural. In fact, many of the characters play host to awkward personalities, and this only aids in encouraging idea of togetherness, even through the strangest of tasks. The ensemble make Swimming With Men a success, but it is the story promoting its message and ideals that offers the most important notions.

Rob Brydon is excellently confused, and the jokes bouncing between Thomas Turgoose and Jim Carter are brilliantly British. It is very much a passionate film, with little interest in what others might think. There is a focus on creating a piece that looks out for itself and not others. Swimming With Men has a strong feel good factor, and sometimes, that is most of what a picture needs to get its emotions flowing in the right direction.

4/5

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