★★★★ | The Shiny Shrimps
A gay water polo team struggles to compete amidst personal dramas on their way to the Gay Games in the fun, camp and hilarious film The Shiny Shrimps.
In French with English subtitles, and directed by co-directors and co-authors Cédric Le Gallo (a real-life Shrimp) and Maxime Govare, ‘The Shiny Shrimps is a cross between Priscilla Queen of the Desert and Pride, with a road trip film interspersed with lots of melodrama!
When straight world champion swimmer Matthias Le Goff (Nicolas Gob) makes a homophobic remark on television, he tries to redeem himself, at the direction of the swimming federation, by being tasked to train The Shiny Shrimps – a Parisian gay water polo team (and purely not athletes) who are in the sport purely for the social aspect of it as well as to be able to perform dance routines and dress up in competitions. So Goff has a huge task ahead of him. all the meanwhile trying to impress his young daughter.
Other men on the team have their own issues; Cédric is married with two kids and his partner says the water polo team is taking him away from his family, while Jean has health issues he’s yet to divulge to the team, and another team member is newly out and is about to have the time of his life. We are too when the Shrimps travel, by bus, to the Gay Games in Croatia.
It’s a road trip like no other; they camp it up to the extreme while love, and sadly homophobia, comes into play. And once they get to the games they’ll attempt to make their mark in any way they can.
The Shiny Shrimps is so much fun to watch it’ll make you want to join some sort of sports team to experience what you’ve just seen in the film. And the cast are having lots of fun, with each actor perfectly suited for in roles. The Shiny Shrimps is une joie.
‘The Shiny Shrimps’ is out now in UK cinemas
Tim Baros writes film and theatre articles/ reviews for Pride Life and The American magazines and websites, as well as for Hereisthecity.com, Blu-RayDefinition.com and TheGayUK.com. He has also written for In Touch and TNT Magazines, SquareMile.com and LatinoLife.co.uk. He is a voting member for the UK Regional Critics Circle and the Gay & Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA – of which he is the UK representative). In addition, he has produced and directed two films: The Shirt and Rex Melville Desire: The Musical.