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UK, 1980 (MIFF 1989, Mike Leigh Retrospective)

Director: Mike Leigh

No Mike Leigh film better illustrates the unique blend of comedy and drama that have come to be a trademark of his work than Grown Ups, which moves from heart-rendering pathos to hilarious, chaotic sit-com.

Its central couple, Dick and Mandy, are the young newlyweds settling into their first terrace house and unsure as how to best appreciate their new found freedom. This solitude is soon shattered by the recurring visits of Mandy's lonely sister Gloria, a babbling brook of inanities guaranteed to devastate any household, including that of Mr and Mrs Ralph Butcher, the next door neighbours who end up with Gloria locked in their loo and a tumultuous climax on the stairs.

"Leigh's art is........ that of knowing how far one can go too far.' - John Russell Taylor

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An early BBC work, Hard Labour continues the understated, downbeat style of Bleak Moments in what may be Leigh's most poignant portrait, that of a middle-aged working class woman whose life is a ... More »

The Five Minute Films

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