[pullquote cite=”” type=”left, right”][amazon text=Amazon&template=carousel&chan=That Film Guy&asin=B0002SD0DE][/pullquote] 2003 was a big year for Orlando Bloom. He was one of the leads in breakout smash-hit Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, starred in Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, which swept the Oscars and had recently been signed on to be the lead in Ridley Scott’s epic period piece Kingdom of Heaven. So there was some surprise when small-time Brit-flick The Calcium Kid was released in 2004 and marked his next jaunt onto the big screen.
Jimmy ˜The Calcium Kid’ Connelly (Bloom) is a young, naive milkman with a father in prison and a mother who is a ˜masseuse.’ Whilst sparring he accidently breaks the hand of the number one contender to the world title due to his extremely strong bones because I drink 3 pints of milk a day, every day. Dodgy boxing promoter Herbie Bush (Omid Djalili) puts Jimmy into the title match as a way of keeping his money-making night alive. Jimmy then experiences the highs and lows of becoming an overnight sensation in the sporting world as he trains to try and become the champion in his first ever fight.
The Calcium Kid is a standard sports movie plot, but shot as a mock-documentary. The combination of camera shots and narration allow a fair amount of comedy moments, as well as the odd poignant exchange, especially the one between Jimmy and his father. The star performer is clearly Djalili who is obscene, obnoxious and overall disgusting as boxing promoter Bush who is clearly so far out of his depth at every step, but never fails to mess things up further sort of like a nasty version of Del-Boy Trotter. Although there should be a mention of Jimmy’s best friend Stan (Rafe Spall) who steals a lot of the best lines.
Orlando Bloom is passable as the young, innocent Jimmy, and even shows off some excellent comedy timing. In between chugging pints of milk he still insists on staring into the middle-distance on occasion, which is an annoying trait he brings to all of his films. But the film is certainly no worse off for having him, although it still seems a rather low-key choice for an actor coming off the back of his breakout year.
What it ends up being is a passable, if a little disappointing film, with some middling performances, but a potentially wasted and over-the-top execution in some areas.