Directed by David Gleeson, starring Michael Legge, Allen Leech, Amy Shiels, Frank Kelly and David Murray.

The first feature film from writer-director David Gleeson is a likeable, heart-warming offering, though not without flaws.

Young, naive and lonely, Shane Butler (Legge) longs to find a place in the world. On the hunt for a flat of his own, he bumps into an old schoolmate, Vincent (Leech), and the pair decide to move in together. Vincent, a flamboyant fashion student is everything Shane wants to be, confident and out-going, but, unfortunately, he lacks the skills to pull it off, especially where the beautiful Gemma (Shiels) is concerned.

It's not long before the hapless Shane finds himself made over by Vincent and mixed up in some shady business thanks to local drug dealer Keith (Murray). Caught between the desire to fulfil his dream of going to art school and his own insecurities, and despite some good advice from jaded colleague Gerry (Kelly), he ultimately alienates Vincent while also losing track of his own identity. Redemption is on the horizon however, as he manages to pull himself back from the brink and come to terms with who he is and what he wants out of life.

'Cowboys & Angels' is the kind of buddy movie that's been done before. Plot-wise it's predictable and the pace is quite slow. Individually, the actors are good. Legge is particularly convincing as the lonely and uncertain - but likeable - Shane, while Leech's Vincent is a nicely underplayed gay student whose passion is fashion. When the two interact however, it seems contrived, especially in earlier scenes. Another problem is Shiels who, as the love interest, is superfluous.

Despite its flaws, 'Cowboys & Angels' is a moving and confident coming of age tale that shows promise for both writer-director and cast.

Katie Moten