Director: Ken Loach
Veteran British filmmaker Ken Loach, who has consistently astounded MIFF audiences with films including My Name is Joe (1999) and Bread and Roses (2000), has again delivered a work that champions society's underdogs. Based on a screenplay by ex-railway worker Rob Dawber, Loach turns a jaundiced eye on Britain's deregulated rail system. A depot in South Yorkshire is privatised: the new owners see unions as troublemakers and hard-fought agreements and safety measures are torn up. With cutbacks and a drop in standards, a tragic disaster is as inevitable as management's foolhardiness. A film of humour, urgency and human resilience.
With bitter irony, Rob Dawber died of asbestos-related cancer prior to completion of the film, not before proving in court that his employers were to blame for his illness.
"The Navigators is so finely drawn and so very distinctive of its maker that one is keenly reminded of why Loach remains one of the most influential directors in world cinema." - Sight and Sound
Ken Loach (born in Warwickshire, England, 1936) worked as a stage actor before joining the BBC as an assistant director. Combining television work with filmmaking, he made his feature film debut with Poor Cow (1967). Other titles include Raining Stones (1993), My Name is Joe (MIFF 1999) and Bread and Roses (MIFF 2000).