I’m naturally suspicious of any film which tries to sell itself off the back of having a ‘famous’ musician in it. More often than not their appearance is fleeting and cringeworthy. In The Paddy Lincoln Gang, Glen Matlock has a very brief cameo which sadly fits into the above box. However, playing on this does the film an injustice. Whilst it doesn’t really work on either level it’s aiming for, at least Ben Jagger has tried something very different from your standard music film.
Charismatic Irishman Rob McAlister (Dean S. Jagger) is the lead singer. Tom (Demetri Watkins) writes the songs and is a musical genius behind the band. Rick (Richard Wagner) and Steady (Joseph DiMasso) make up the rhythm and percussion section. Together they are The Paddy Lincoln Gang – brothers in arms and the most exciting rock sound sweeping America. On the verge of making it big, Rob’s demons return to haunt him, his relationship with Tom’s sister Leyla (Amy Lawhorn) becomes increasingly strained and Steady and Rick’s rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle threatens to jeopardise their record deal.
The Paddy Lincoln Gang is based on a short film called A Night at Robert McAlister’s, and extending it to a full feature is a stretch. Whilst it starts and ends well, the middle section too often descends into clichés and follows a well-worn path often trodden in the genre. The acting is good but I must confess that the music turns me off personally. There’s some creative editing and great cinematography, but all too often it feels as though the plot is just filler before the twist at the end. Given the ending, it might struggle to find an audience with music film fans. However, it’s well worth a watch and it’s great to see something a bit different being made.
The Paddy Lincoln Gang will be available on demand and to download from August 25.