After seeing the very brief blurb in my pre-booking sheets at work, I was instantly taken in by a film I had not heard of or watched, I’m not even a U2 fan. Two brothers attempt to become global rock stars but can only look on as old school friends U2 become the biggest band in the world. It’s based on true events as Neil McCormick and his brother Ivan attend the same school as with Paul Hewson and David Evans whose band The Hype goes on to worldwide fame as Bono, The Edge and U2. Meanwhile The McCormick Brothers are left desperately trying to break into the music scene, with Neil’s promises that they are better than, and will be bigger than U2.
Every time things seem to be looking up for the boys, fate steps in and pulls the carpet out from underneath them. They land a gig to play at a bar, promising to pack them in…on the same day Pope John Paul II visits, drawing a crowd of millions. They arrange another concert, again with huge aspirations, only to discover it is the same date as the Live Aid concert. All the while that this goes on, Bono and U2 seem to be trying to help our brothers, trying to throw them leads, contacts and gigs, only to be turned down in disgust by Neil. Why does U2 keep trying to help their old schoolmates? Could it have something to do with the offer they made to Ivan to join the band back before they hit it big? Of course that offer never made it to Ivan. Bono approached Neil and telling him he would like his brother to join U2. Neil rejects the offer out of hand, but fails to tell Ivan, believing that their own band will become bigger and better than U2.
This film featured a lot of good music reminiscent of the late 80s, and was very well cast. It was very nice to see Pete Postlethwaite one more time, as he was an excellent actor, and sadly no longer with us. The main characters played by Ben Barnes and Robert Sheehan worked quite well together. This film was darkly humorous and quite enjoyable overall. A nice look back at a tiny slice of music history, well perhaps just a footnote, but a look nonetheless.