Review – Bank of Dave

Sometimes the simplicity of a happy story about happy people is enough for a happy viewing.

Dave Fishwick (Rory Kinnear) is that one guy in town everyone knows. Sure he loves the sound of his own voice and thinks the sun shines out of his own bum. But he cares far more about his friends and the Burnley community than he does himself. So when his friends might need a helping hand financially, he’s only too happy to oblige.

Dave is a van salesman. Seems he has the gift of the gab because in the 07 recession, Dave’s minivan sales did really well. So much so, he started lending money out to his friends who needed it. Luckily, these friends managed to pay back every cent. So Dave started lending to more people to help his community thrive. Again, every cent was paid back in full.

Bank of Dave was more a nickname he had managed to get himself. But it wasn’t until one of his customers gave him a sum of money he made in profit as a thank you. But even though Dave tried to refuse the money, it was insisted he invest it. And so started the journey of starting his own bank.

The only problem, the Financial Board of the UK hadn’t approved a new bank to operate in over 150 years. The chances of Dave getting one seems exceptionally slim. But that wasn’t the point to Dave. He wanted the big greedy banks to go public with they they wont approve a small community bank that gives back to the community. In steps a lawyer from London, Hugh (Joel Fry).

Little does everyone know despite coming from a reputable firm, Hugh isn’t very good or regarded in his job. But the big hot shot lawyer in town causes quite the stir. So much so news has got back to the Financial Board and while they don’t think Hugh will be a problem, they set to putting a stop to Hugh and Dave’s plan.

Little does the Financial Board know, Dave has the support of the entire community and a rather attractive niece. So Hugh becomes not only employed to do his job, he becomes passionate and invested in the plan. A plan that sees the likes of Def Leppard help the cause.

Bank of Dave is based on a real person. And while some liberties were taken for the film, for the most part it is accurate. It’s this fact that makes this film all the more enjoyable. Knowing this happy story has actually changed lives and given happiness to a whole community.

It is fair to point out this film is very much all fluff and fun. It’s the classic tale we come to see more often than not of a big hot-shot someone from the big city finding happiness and love in a small town. There was a part where Hugh decides to sell his London apartment to help Dave’s cause. This reminded me of a similar situation in Fisherman’s Friends. As it turns out it’s the same Director, Chris Foggin, who may have taken inspiration. But it’s this line of easy fun watching similar Fisherman’s Friends.

Dave is played by Rory Kinnear who is very much an underrated performer. From his disturbing performance in Men to his role as Tanner in the Daniel Craig 007 films, Kinnear immerses himself in the role. Dave Fishwick is no different. He’s this confident salesman who pretends he doesn’t like the spotlight, but will always stand in front of a crowd. There’s this moment when he finds out he could be in a great deal of trouble and slams the table. It’s this interesting personality trait where a happy person is angry, but doesn’t want to show it. So the slam becomes this almost inconvenience to his emotion, but he has to show everyone that’s what he’s feeling.

Bank of Dave is a story that’s too good to be true, but it is. It’s your classic tale of the little guy who takes on the gig guys and wins. It’s a feel-good and fun journey along the way. While it doesn’t go about pretending it’s the best comedy drama ever made, it does make for some easy and enjoyable viewing.

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