Underdog refuses to accept her role
PATTI CAKE (15, 109 mins)
INSPIRED by writerdirector Geremy Jasper’s efforts to break into the New York music scene, Patti Cake is a crowdpleasing fable which wears its heart on its sleeve.
The film’s unlikely heroine – an overweight New Jersey twentysomething with a talent for immortalising her day-today existence in snappy verse – is a diamond in the rough who just needs that one slice of luck to realise her potential.
Every time life beats her down, she gets back up and retaliates with a barrage of weaponised wordplay.
Patricia Dombrowski (Danielle Macdonald) fantasises about public adoration under her rapper moniker Killa-P.
Alas, Patricia is stuck in a dead-end job tending the bar where her boozesoaked mother Barb (Bridget Everett) belts out 1980s anthems on the karaoke machine, and locals cruelly taunt her plus-size fabulousness.
Music is Patricia’s escape from reality and she composes tight rhymes with her best friend Jheri (Siddharth Dhananjay).
Undaunted by her mother’s scorn, Patricia forges a creative union with a self-anointed Antichrist called Basterd (Mamoudou Athie) in the hope of finding the perfect beat for her confessional lyrics.
But fragile dreams shatter and Patricia turns to her emotional rock Nana (Cathy Moriarty).
Patti Cake exudes a rough-hewn charm that extends to the stellar lead performance from upand-coming Australian actress Macdonald.
Hopefulness bumps and grinds with emotional hard knocks, reminding us that darkness lies beneath the best fairytales.
Patti Dombrowski (Danielle Macdonald) makes a stand