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ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE MIDLANDS

UK, 2002 (MIFF 2003, International Panorama)

Director: Shane Meadows

With a powerhouse cast that includes Robert Carlyle and Rhys Ifans, MIFF regular Shane Meadows (A Room for Romeo Brass, 2000) returns with his typically skewed look at the world. This time he takes a classically generic Western premise—a dark stranger rambles into town and attempts to take back his woman—and transposes it smack bang in the middle of England.

Dek (Ifans) is a fairly uptight car-repair supervisor, who shares a house with Shirley and her 12-year-old daughter Marlene. Appearing on a national TV show, Dek proposes to his Shirley only to have his offer knocked back. To make matters worse, Shirley's ex-boyfriend, and Marlene's father Jimmy (Carlyle), a wanted criminal, has rolled into town, intent on wowing back his old flame. The stage is set for a showdown on the grimy back streets of Nottingham.

With a knowing wink to Sergio Leone's masterworks, and Mike Leigh's bitter social comedies, Meadows has created an inventive film full of engaging characters, providing plenty of laughs.

See also...

A ROOM FOR ROMEO BRASS

Shane Meadows (Small Time & Where's the Money Ronnie, both MIFF 1997) once again proves himself one of Britain's most intriguing visual poets with this thoroughly engaging movie about English ... More »

LE DONK & SCOR-ZAY-ZEE

“Like a cross between This Is Spinal Tap and Steve Coogan's sitcom Saxondale.” - Independent ... A rollicking rock mockumentary from Shane Meadows (This is England, MIFF 07; Somers Town, MIFF 08) ... More »

SOMERS TOWN

“An affectionate tribute to cross-cultural friendship and the rapidly changing landscape known as Somers Town” - VarietyLeaving the Midlands behind, 16-year-old Tomo (played by This Is England's ... More »

dead man's shoes

Shane Meadows has fashioned a chilling picture of vengeance in his brilliant and unforgiving [Dead Man's Shoes], a radical shift in tone from his [Once Upon a Time in the Midlands] (MIFF 03) and [A ... More »

STONE ROSES MADE OF STONE, The

"It is a film about defying the odds, sticking it to the man and telling the cynics to shut their pie-holes!" - filmmaker Shane Meadows ... When Ian Brown sang I Wanna Be Adored, the opening song of ... More »

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