Sorry We Missed You; Ken Loach Brings Us an Emotionally Draining Experience. Grade: B+
Sorry We Missed You tells a story of a family man named Ricky (Kris Hitchen) whom bought a franchise, as he has his own delivery service... Sort of. He went through the acquisition, so one day his family could own a house of their own someday. In order for Ricky to claim his franchise, he must put a fair amount of money down. The family barely has money to begin with, but wife Abbie (Debbie Honeywood) made a sacrifice as she sold her car, so Ricky could have the franchise. Now Abbie is without reliable transportation for her own job, in which she’s a caretaker, so she must take the bus. Meanwhile the children of this family, have struggles of their own. The son Seb (Rhys Stone) is what you called a Law Abiding Citizen, as he spends most of his time graffiti buildings and walls, as he skips school. While the parents are away due to their jobs, the oldest sibling in the family being irresponsible, all responsibility in the household is left with the youngest sibling Liza Jae (Katie Proctor). What could’ve given the family a promising future, now gives them a troubled present. Witness a family break completely down before your own eyes.
The Cinematography was pretty good, it’s a beautiful looking film. The Score when present was honestly uneventful, as it didn’t bring much of an impact towards the film. To the films credit it doesn’t necessarily need a Score, but when it’s present it’s honestly forgettable. The cast all in all was great as a whole. Ricky played by Kris Hitchen played a great performance, as this hard working father, hoping to catch fortune owning a franchise. I honestly enjoyed the character arc of this character, as what is early on to believe money and owning the finest things in life is important, what he comes to understand later on is his family is the most important thing. This character honestly shattered my heart, I felt extremely terrible for this hard working father whom just wants to do everything to provide his family a great life. Abbie played by Debbie Honeywood (That’s a bad ass name!) played a great performance as well. You can admire the heart in this mother, whom sacrifice her only reliable source of transportation, just to see her husband succeed in her own line of work. Watching this character go home to home, taking care of those incapable in helping themselves really makes you realize why she partaken in an unselfish act earlier. This woman has a huge heart for taking care of others, as it’s her obligation to help others.
Seb played by Rhys Stone had a great performance as well, as this troubled son. Sometimes you feel angered at this kid, because his parents are doing everything they can, to provide him a good life. His acts of selfishness really gets on your nerves, you actually felt anger when he acts out. The thing with this character acting out is it’s honestly understandable. With both parents not around, how else is this young man suppose to grow, when he only has a little sister to look out for him?! It’s hard to grow a sense of maturity, which is why this character struggles with the growing pains of growing up. Liza Jae played by Katie Proctor played a great performance as well. It’s funny how every single character in this family, in some way you feel bad for every single one of them. With Liza Jae this character crushed me in the third act. All she wanted was her family to be around more, where they wouldn’t work day in and night out, stressing over finances. It’s tough for a young girl to go through a life like this, in a home you only want to feel happiness and love, not unhappiness and stress.
Other than the Score not being impactful when present, I did felt some pacing issues come about here and there as far as flaws go. I’ve been keeping my eye out for this film, since it premiered at Cannes last year. The poster just speaks to me as we are about to witness, a feel good story, about a family. That’s honestly the complete opposite of what this film is. As I let this film sit in for a couple days, it’s honestly hard to criticize the faults of it, other than the faults in the own household and the system. Sorry We Missed You is honestly one of those films, that is going to break you down while watching, as this is the harsh reality of the real world, partaking in a common workplace.
The screenplay is extremely well written, as it felt genuine to a common family, whom has to make sacrifices in order to provide their kids with a good life. The opportunity in which Ricky receives in this delivery service sounds great on paper, as you can make a well earned living. But as far as one that is a family man, whom is dealing with a difficult son... This investment was surely going to backfire on him quickly. Being unable to be there for his family in critical times, is something the job at hand would never allow Ricky to do, as it’s an everyday job with no days off it seemed like. That can really kill the drive of a family man like Ricky, as his soul begins to weaken over the course of time, causing him to be in a great amount of debt.
It’s not only heart breaking for Ricky, it’s also tears each member of the family in the household. Abbie becomes a bit frustrated, now that she has a lack of transportation towards her clients, which makes her leave a bit early so she can make it to the next client on time. Now that Ricky has a job in which doesn’t grant him much of a break, it also kills the well being of Abbie as there’s not a single adult figure, to be there when their kids are in trouble of any kind. As both parents out of the picture, all that’s left is a troubled young man, causing more trouble than ever. While the youngest sibling as well breaks down, as things in the household only become unhealthy towards her well being.
In the beginning the job at hand felt like a great opportunity for Ricky. However like most high end corporate heads, the only thing they care about is their pockets, rather than the employers whom provide them the income in the first place. I will say the corporate head does make a valid point, when Ricky requests days off. Though the problems in the household were minor on paper, but in Ricky’s mental state was a major problem. The corporate head made a valid point as others go through worst moments, than what Ricky goes through. But when things truly hit the fan for Ricky... The corporate head just becomes a despicable being. What looked like a reasonable man at first, really shows his true colors when it affects his business. In reality though it may seem like these CEO’s care about their employees, through their appearance on commercial ads and interviews... In the harsh reality of things, all they care about is their income and nothing more.
By the end of this film... Like the family, you’re going to be completely crushed as well. It’s nothing personal than one encountering thousands of debt, as the only way to get out of debt, is continuing to be a slave towards the system. When I say “Slave” it’s metaphorically speaking, in which Ricky and many others are exactly that. This film is emotionally devastating to me, as writing about it really puts me in the mindset of this family all over again, as I feel a great amount of remorse towards their well beings. Greed really can destroy the happiest of families, trying to provide a good life... It’s a damn shame.
Overall, Sorry We Missed You is a great film. I highly recommend checking this one out. Happy BornDay to my mother whom turned the big 60 today! Been extremely grateful to have the best mother any child could ask for, love ya mommy, have a blessed year! -Mitch Smietana