A Long Way Down


The novel A Long Way Down is not-quite-vintage Nick Hornby Discuss this article

© ITP Images

The novel A Long Way Down is not-quite-vintage Nick Hornby. And this is a disappointing film version, a bit hokey and fake. The big problem is the book’s played-for-laughs concept: four suicidal Londoners planning to top themselves on New Year’s Eve choose the same skyscraper to jump off.

Pierce Brosnan out-mockneys Jamie Oliver as a disgraced daytime telly presenter fresh out of prison after a scandal. Imogen Poots is terrific as a sarky, brattish politician’s daughter (‘it’s exciting to have a celebrity in our suicide midst’). Aaron Paul (Jesse from Breaking Bad) is a failed rocker working as a pizza delivery guy. And, in a weird bit of casting, Toni Collette (hilarious in The United States of Tara) drabs it up as a Home Counties single mum.

It’s not a spoiler to say that no one takes the plunge. There are funny moments: when the story ends up on national news, attention-seeking Poots tells a reporter how they saw an angel resembling Matt Damon on the roof. Rosamund Pike is hilarious as a bitchy TV host.

But it’s hard to care about these characters. None of them is believable for a second. And the film lacks that slip-into-a-Slanket cosy feel you want from Hornby.

By Cath Clarke
Time Out Doha,

A Long Way Down

  • Duration: 96
  • Released: Thu, 07 Aug
  • Classification: PG15
  • Language: English
  • Director: Pascal Chaumeil
  • Stars: Pierce Brosnan, Toni Collette, Imogen Poots

Add your review/feedback

Subscribe to weekender newsletter



Explore by

Our favourite features