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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 August 2012
There's Only One Jimmy Grimble is a very simple film of whimsy and football, a tale of a young 15 year old Manchester misfit who learns some life lessons when he encounters a strange old homeless dear who gives him a pair of magical old boots. So yes, boys own fanciful stuff for sure, but it has such a warm heart, is loaded with dry Lancastrian wit, and threaded together with such an affection for the sport and teenage growing pains, that's it's impossible to dislike. The cast list is impressive, with Ray Winstone, Robert Carlyle, Gina McKee, Ben Miller and Jane Lapotaire keeping the ball up for the adults, while in the youngsters half we have Lewis McKenzie as Jimmy scoring well by being naturally uneasy in front of the camera, and Samia Smith has the required charm and feistiness to make the tricky "girlfriend" role work very well.

There's good football action for the footie loving fan, with serious tension filled sequences sitting next to some truly funny ones; anyone who played for their school football team will identify with the "different" sort of teams Jimmy and co have to play against, and some of the young characterisations will definitely strike a chord with most British folk who played sport at school. The drama is well played, with director John Hay letting his actors imbue the narrative with the right amount of emotional weight, the soundtrack contains ideal poundings from bands up North and John De Boorman's cinematography is suitably bleak and beautiful at the requisite junctures.

It has flaws for sure, any film fan could pick holes in this without really trying, and familiarity of the sub-genre undoubtedly stops it blooming with freshness. But why gripe? Film achieves its aims, it wants to leave you with a feel good glow and delivers on that promise. High art it's not, perfect British footie pick me? Indeed. All together now, "there's only one Jimmy Grimble, one Jimmy Grimble". 7/10
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on 12 September 2003
This is a feel good extravaganza film, one of the unsung british comedy films. The story line is about a under confident teen who is growing up in the rough inner city Manchester area. He has one dream, to become a professional footballer for the Machester under dogs Man City. But before then he needs to build up his confidence to be able to show off his skills in public. He does this by accidently meeting an old bag lady who tricks him into thinking he has magic shoes. The story goes on as he works his way up through the school footy team onwards with these magic shoes. But while this is happening, through out the story line there are hilarious jokes and gimmicks to entertain all viewers over the age of about 13. This is definatly a film to see.
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on 16 June 2001
Funny comedy focused around a boy, taunted at school for his love of England's football under-achievers: Manchester City. Great funny sequences, including the school football match where the referee scores a header, before Jimmy Grimble strikes from his own half - the ball loops into the top of the net as the goalkeeper answers his mobile phone. Classic!
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on 14 March 2002
This film has everything. Is appealing to all ages over 12. It's simplicity works well and leaves you feeling full of hope that anything is possible.
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VINE VOICEon 13 January 2002
Jimmy Grimble is a Manchester lad, keen on football, who supports Manchester City, the town's second club which is generally in the shadow the much more successful Manchester United. He lives with his mother who wants, but cannot find, a long term relationship and at school, he is constantly picked upon and bullied by the dominant, Manchester United supporting group.
His love of football is strong enough that he ignores the bullies and finally manages to wangle himself a place on the school team. Initially, he is a substitute but he gains a regular place in the team when he scores a lucky goal and gains confidence through a pair of "lucky" boots.
His nemesis in the team, "Gorgeous" Gordon Burley is the leader of the bullies and he will stop at nothing to do Jimmy down. Gordon's father is on the school board of govenors and has high hopes for his son's future in professional football.
The team enters the Manchester schools cup. Gordon wants the girls and to be picked by the Manchester United talent scouts who follow the competition. Gordon's father wants fortune for his son and offers to pay for a new sports pavillion for the school if they reach the final of the cup.
The film revolves around a number of questions.
Will the team reach or even win the final of the schools cup?
Will Jimmy defeat the bullies who want to stop him from succeeding in the team?
Will Jimmy's mother ditch Colin, her current, rather lame boyfriend?
Will she get back together with Harry, the ex-boyfriend who is the only man in her past that Jimmy liked?
Will we get to the bottom of the mysterious past of Eric Wirral, the school's soccer coach?
What is the story behind Jimmy's magic boots?
Will Jimmy sort out his relationship with Sara, the girl who has won his affection?
Of course, as a young teenager's feelgood movie, you can be assured that the film will deliver the "right" answers to all of those questions but it does a good job in delivering them without insulting the viewer's intelligence.
The film hits its chosen spot with accuracy. It is not so overpoweringly sweet that it is an embarrassment but it does not deliver so much bad news that it will discourage younger viewers.
Robert Carlyle as the Soccer coach and Lewis McKenzie as Jimmy anchor the film. Carlyle has a harder role here than as the irrepressible Gaz in "The Full Monty" and he rises to the part. The other adult actors perform creditably but none are called upon to be particularly special and John Henshaw and Samia Ghadie as Jimmy's worst enemy and love interest are the only others to impress. There is a cameo appearance by Jane Lapotaire as the derelict who gives Jimmy his lucky boots but she does not have a role that demands any of her talents.
As a film for young to mid teens, it is a success and seen as that it is a good film and an agreeable way for a family to spend an hour and a half. It's not a "Billy Elliot" or a "Whistle Down the Wind" but it does deliver what it sets out to do.
With its working class English setting and its concentration on soccer, this movie will not play well to North American audiences.
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on 20 March 2002
I was satellite channel grazing and happened on this present day fairytale! Being a supporter of the other team in Manchester I initially presumed that, with the film being about City, that it would be an out and out comedy! There are some funny moments but there are also some touching moments too. It's one of those films with something for everyone. The music is great and it wasn't padded out. I'm buying it so I can watch it again. My husband though it was great. My folks will love this too. 5 star!
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on 1 June 2009
Great DVD well worth watching & only £4.99 when I bought it so great value as well.
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on 25 September 2011
I purchased this dvd because I saw a bit of this film before on the tv. I liked the bit I saw so much that I wrote it down and looked for it on Amazon. The film is great. It is a good film for men who like football or women who don't, like me. I would recommend it to anyone.
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on 23 July 2014
Got this on video and thought it was time to get it on DVD.Its funny,it's sad but down to earth.great acting by great actors,we'll worth watching.jimmy is a man city fan in a school full of man utd fans but that doesn't stop him.
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on 23 December 2014
This was recommended to me by a work colleague, so I brought it for my son for Christmas a couple of years ago - he's watched it several times now and thoroughly enjoys it every time. Its a good family film to watch if you like football.
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