Skip to main content


UK, 1994 (MIFF 1995, Documentaries)

Director: Kim Flitcroft

Exploitation, in its many guises, is at the heart of this gritty, often heartbreakingly humor­ous documentary (an accusation that the film itself is not immune from) about the somewhat deluded aspirations of four desperados trying to make it in (or is that out of) the economically depressed northern England metropolis of Sheffield. Each are held in thrall to tabloid fod­der-inspired dreams of fame and fortune to the point that Tales From a Hard City at times seems more like an incredible fiction rather than harsh in-your-face reality.

There's Glen, the petty thief and local Karaoke king; Sarah, who's trying to parley her arrest in Greece for provocative disco moves into a musi­cal career with the single 'Dirty Dancing'; Wayne, the bar owner and cigar sucking would-be media mogul who's taken her under his rather predato­ry wing: and Paul, the ex-boxer come fledgling actor who has his sights set on a prestige car sponsorship deal-though he doesn't have his licence and ends up in the Skoda caryard!

All bare themselves before Kim Flitcroft's relentlessly inquiring camera with a suicidal can­dour that is difficult to look at but almost impos­sible to turn away from—voyeurism has never been so painful.

See also...


"(A) keenly observed, beautifully filmed documentary … keeps its audience enthralled from sunny start to tear-stained finish." - London Evening Standard ... UK dairy farmer Stephen Hook is ... More »


New Age shamanism. Fire walking. Tantric sex. An Australian rugby coach. ... Every year Angsbacka, an idyllic lakeside forest in the north of Sweden, becomes a gathering point for people seeking ... More »

Sargy Mann

An artist for all of his adult life, Sargy Mann accepts his total loss of vision late in life with admirable good grace and sets about readying a canvas for his first and, he presumes, last, ?blind ... More »


Challenging British director Derek Jarman's final major work has been compared in visual execution to Warhol's Sleep and Empire State. Where it outstrips them both is in the meticulously crafted and ... More »


Revered for his hallucinatory essay films, Chris Petit (last seen at MIFF 1999 with Negative Space and The Falconer) has cooperated with lain Sinclair on a documentary version of Sinclair's scabrous ... More »


... ... Twilight City won the MFF's Grand Prix for Best Short Film in 1989. Due to airline delays, however, the print was never screened (only a video was available), making this a much-welcomed ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director