Eve is a catastrophe—low on self-esteem but high on fantasy, especially when it comes to music. Over the course of one Glasgow summer, she meets two similarly rootless souls, posh Cass and fastidious James, and together they form a pop group.
In God Help the Girl, writer/director Stuart Murdoch creates a poignant coming-of-age story that doubles as a sublime indie-pop musical from one of indie pop’s biggest songwriters. The project began as a suite of songs, written while Murdoch was between records and tours as lead singer of Belle & Sebastian. He nurtured it for nearly a decade into a fully formed film, set in the bohemian fantasia of Glasgow’s West End, which is populated by mods, rockers, and emo kids who have no qualms about breaking into song and dance.
While a treat for the eyes, thanks to the candy-colored cinematography, as well as the ears, thanks to Murdoch’s undeniable gift for crafting fantastic pop songs, it’s the top-notch cast that delivers the film. Star turns from Emily Browning (“Sleeping Beauty”, “Sucker Punch”), Olly Alexander (“Le Week-End”, “Bright Star”) and Hannah Murray (“Game of Thrones”, “Skins”) elevate what might have been an exercise in twee to an emotional, heartfelt film that will resonate with audiences of all ages.
Length: 111 mins
Stuart Murdoch is the lead singer and songwriter of the Scottish band, Belle & Sebastian. He formed the group in 1996 and in the period spanning to 2001 the band sold over a million albums worldwide and played large venues across the US and Europe. They also organized their successful largescale music festival, Bowlie festival at a holiday camp in the South East of England.
Signing to fabled UK label Rough Trade in 2002, they embarked on a period of greater commercial success, touring more extensively, visiting new countries before releasing The Life Pursuit in 2006. The album became their first top ten album in the UK and sold over 150,000 copies in the US where they sold out the Hollywood Bowl for a show accompanied by the LA Philharmonic Orchestra. Shortly thereafter, their songs began appearing in movies such as The Devil Wears Prada, Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Juno.
After finishing a tour to support the record, Murdoch took hiatus from the band to work on the God Help The Girl music and script, extensively producing albums worth of material and playing a number of shows to support the records.
Belle and Sebastian re-formed in 2010 for the Write About Love album, prompting their most successful tour to date, including outdoor shows in LA and NY, curating a “Bowlie 2” festival in Minehead as well as first time visits to South Korea, Indonesia, Argentina, Chile and Colombia. They also headlined the Latitude Festival in the UK 18 and played 3 orchestral shows with the London Contemporary Orchestra. The album featured guest appearances by Carey Mulligan and Norah Jones and reached the top ten in the UK and top twenty on the US charts.
Following the Write About Love tour, Murdoch has returned to God Help The Girl. Additionally, a collection of his diaries, The Celestial Cafe was published by Pomona in 2011.