Movie of the Week: Pure


Not a bad week on TV for those who like a bit of schmaltz with their movies – Ghost is on on Sunday – but my choice for the week is something that combines warmth with a hard edge. Directed by Gillies MacKinnon (The Escapist; History of Mr Polly), Pure stars Harry Eden (Cape Wrath; Bleak House) and Molly Parker (The Wicker Man) as ten-year-old Paul and his heroin-addicated mother Mel.

But this is more than just another story of drug addiction and how it wrecks families. It’s a story of hope, courage and determination, and how all those important qualities can be locked up inside a small boy, ready to be unlocked when the need arises. If you want to watch a film and come away moved by the power of the human spirit, this is the film for you.

When her husband dies, Mel (Parker) turns to her old friend Lenny for help and companionship. But Lenny is also a pimp and a dealer and the kind of help he can offer is not always good for Mel’s health. Soon her 10-year-old son Paul (Eden) is looking after both her and his younger brother.

When one of Mel’s friends – a fellow user – dies, Paul is terrified that he is about to lose his mother along with his father. But he’s just a kid. What can he do about it? At the start, he doesn’t know exactly what he can do, but he knows he must do something.

Pure: BBC One, Monday 5 November, 11.55pm

Worth a look: Ghost: Five, Sunday 4 November, 9pm A Clockwork Orange: ITV4, Tuesday 6 November, 10pm Dr Strangelove: ITV3, Friday 9 November, 9pm Pulp Fiction: UKTV Gold, Friday 9 November, 10.30pm

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