knocked-for-sixlargeThere’s a chance you may have caught Boyd Hicklin’s cricket comedy Knocked for Six at London Film Festival 2012 – where it went by the name of Save Your Legs. However now seems a far more appropriate time to indulge in this quirky piece, as we enter in to the cricket season (otherwise known as the Summer, over ‘ere), with a film that taps into that annual excitement amongst fans of the sport. A sport that, while mostly untouched in cinema, has shown that it can translate well onto the big screen, following on from the brilliant documentary Fire in Babylon.

Teddy Brown (Stephen Curry) lives and breathes cricket, spending the vast majority of his time focusing on being the president of the Abbotsford Anglers, where he plays alongside his two closest friends, Rick (Brendan Cowell) and Stavros (Damon Gameau) amongst others. His biggest dream, however, is to embark on a tour with his teammates and represent Australia on foreign soil – and the opportunity arises when sponsor Sanjeet (Darshan Jariwala) agrees to take them to India for a tournament. While not quite of the required standard, Teddy is determined to follow in his hero Sachin Tendulka’s footsteps, and lead his side to glory.

The performances across the board are impressive – with other roles falling to the likes of Teddy’s love interest Anjali (Pallavi Sharda), and young cricketer Mark, played by Brenton Thwaites. You may not have heard of the latter yet, but you’ll have the choice between two of his films this weekend, as he takes up a starring role in Mike Flanagan’s horror flick Oculus. However it is Curry who is the star of the show, lucky enough to be working with a brilliantly comic creation, he’s a classic leading man – in his head he’s the most normal, but in reality he is far from it, and just as pathetic as everybody else – in a similar vein to Father Ted, or Roy from The IT Crowd, for example.

There’s a genial spirit to this feature, with a similar atmosphere you may get at the live cricket. The (sometimes) good natured rivalry between the Brits and the Aussies is one that can be playful and tongue-in-cheek at times, and this film lives off that very spirit, while it’s somewhat comically self-deprecating about the sport. What helps the good-natured tone to this, is the palpable team camaraderie amongst the group, which produces very natural banter.

Though much of this film is spoken in cricket terms, with a general, prior understanding of the sport certainly helpful – there is enough appeal to a broad audience for this, given the lead’s emotional journey he embarks upon, as a man who doesn’t want to grow up, unable to confront the idea of maturing, particularly prevalent when learning of the news that Rick is expecting a baby. To Teddy, cricket is a way of remaining youthful, and feel good doing it – and such themes are relatable to many of us.

Essentially that’s a notion that Knocked for Six abides by, as an undemanding film that does little but entertain – albeit sometimes inane to say the least. Thankfully, however, it’s short and sweet – and to be honest, you could probably fit this in to watch on test match day, while the teams are breaking for lunch. In fact, you could probably watch this twice over in England, during a break for bad weather.