An impassioned, funny and monumentally likable myth-making comedy.
Graham Young, Birmingham Mail
The undercurrent mixture of aggression and delirium is helped by the fact that Terri Hooley's bearded visage at times mixes the psycho side of some of Robert De Niro's characters with comical Robin Williams.
Andy Lea, Daily Star
It's the background of the Troubles that gives this rousing biopic its edge.
Philip French, Observer [UK]
Richard Dormer is immensely likable as Hooley, and Karl Johnson brings a dour conviction to his father, an elderly disillusioned communist who finds spiritual victory in electoral defeat.
Tara Brady, Irish Times
Never mind the mouthpieces: this one goes out to all the folks who know the true meaning of 'no surrender'. Go early. Go often. Bring the family.
Rich Cline, Contactmusic.com
The story of Belfast's "godfather of punk" is told with plenty of groovy style to match the 1970s setting, mixing the music with colourful locations and lively characters.
Derek Malcolm, This is London
The film, studded with archive footage of an awful time, is cheerful and observant even if it goes on a bit too long.
Christopher Tookey, Daily Mail [UK]
Any film that can bring tears to your eyes by playing a minor hit from 1978 - Teenage Kicks climbed only as far as number 31 in the UK singles chart - is all right with me.
Henry Fitzherbert, Daily Express
An engaging bit of myth-making, if a little undisciplined like its protagonist.
Michael Bonner, Uncut Magazine [UK]
For much of the time, Hooley's tale is, while enjoyably ramshackle, a familiar one of skanky pubs, transit vans, snooty major label executives and poorly attended gigs.
Laurence Boyce, Little White Lies
Joyous, but with a serious edge.
Nigel Floyd, Film4
An engaging portrait of a lovable, shambolic music fan turned reluctant impresario.
Robbie Collin, Daily Telegraph
Richard Dormer is a hairy tuffet of charisma in the lead role, and Colin Carberry and Glenn Patterson's script gives Hooley some lovely lines to say, while perhaps cutting him a little too much slack.
Nigel Andrews, Financial Times
An amiable period piece, set in Belfast before Jonathan Powell ended its troubles.
Jason Best, Movie Talk
This is very much Hooley's mythic version of his own life, seen not so much through a rose-tinted lens as a brown nicotine fug... But Dormer's charm keeps us engaged and whenever there's a lull the music gives the movie a thrilling adrenaline shot.
Damon Wise, Empire Magazine
A rousing tale of rock 'n' roll rebellion that shows how one man's black-vinyl passions ended up socking it to The Man.
Siobhan Synnot, Scotsman
[The] storytelling is predictable and pedestrian, and the film never gets to grips with Hooley's frequent acts of self-sabotage.
Edward Douglas, ComingSoon.net
Has a couple of true revelatory moments, but the script could be better so that it didn't constantly have to rely on the music to drive the movie... and ultimately, save it.
Paul Gallagher, The List
It's inspiring stuff, showing the community-building power of music in an environment of fear and ever-present violence.
David McGinty, The Skinny
The characters remain distant and fail to secure any real empathy from the viewer.
This Irish film written by Colin Carberry and Glenn Patterson and directed by Lisa Barros D'Sa and Glenn Leyburn was a refreshing viewing after the previous monster packed 2 hours. Refreshing, inspiring and invigorating, it stars Richard Dormer, Jodie Whittaker, Adrian Dunbar,… More This Irish film written by Colin Carberry and Glenn Patterson and directed by Lisa Barros D'Sa and Glenn Leyburn was a refreshing viewing after the previous monster packed 2 hours. Refreshing, inspiring and invigorating, it stars Richard Dormer, Jodie Whittaker, Adrian Dunbar, Liam Cunningham, Karl Johnson and Dylan Moran. The film is a chronicle of Terri Hooley's life, a record-store owner instrumental in developing Belfast's punk-rock scene.
The movie starts in a little bit awkward way - telling us the story of a happy kid who lost an eye because of bullying of the other kids - and shows a kid with a bow and arrow hitting Terri. Maybe there were other options but, anyway, at the end worked well. Later we find out that Terri Hooley (Dormer) became a radical, rebel and music-lover in 1970s Belfast when the bloody conflict known as the Troubles shuts down his city. As all his friends take sides and take up arms, Terri opens a record shop on the most bombed half-mile in Europe and calls it Good Vibrations. Through it, by chance, he discovers a compelling voice of resistance in the city's nascent underground punk scenes. Inspiring and encouraging the young musicians into action, he becomes the unlikely leader and some kind of protector of a motley band of kids and punks who join him in his mission to create a new community, an alternative punk Ulster with no religious divisions, to bring his city back to life.
I really loved the music, and most of it was provided by bands released by the Good Vibrations label, such as Big Time, I-Spy and The Pressure's by Rudi, Self Conscious Over You, Justa Nother Teenage Rebel and You're A Disease by The Outcasts and Teenage Kicks by The Undertones, as well as Stiff Little Fingers, another Northern Irish punk band around at the same time but not released by the label. The soundtrack also includes songs by The Shangri-Las, Small Faces, David Bowie, Hank Williams and Suicide - quite a variety.
If you like movies with a heart and soul give it a go. It's worth it!