IMDb > This Sporting Life (1963)
This Sporting Life
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This Sporting Life (1963) More at IMDbPro »

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This Sporting Life -- One of the finest British films ever made, this benchmark of "kitchen-sink realism" follows the self-defeating professional and romantic pursuits of a miner turned rugby player eking out an existence in drab Yorkshire.
This Sporting Life -- Trailer: Richard Harris as the wild Frank Manchin

Overview

User Rating:
7.9/10   4,366 votes »
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Popularity: ?
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Director:
Writers:
David Storey (based on the novel by)
David Storey (screenplay)
Contact:
View company contact information for This Sporting Life on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
January 1963 (UK) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
Despite success on the field, a rising rugby star senses the emerging emptiness of his life as his inner angst begins to materialize through aggression and brutality, so he attempts to woo his landlady in hopes of finding reason to live. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 7 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Brilliant, Memorable; Yet .... See more (65 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Richard Harris ... Frank Machin

Rachel Roberts ... Mrs. Margaret Hammond
Alan Badel ... Gerald Weaver

William Hartnell ... 'Dad' Johnson
Colin Blakely ... Maurice Braithwaite
Vanda Godsell ... Mrs. Anne Weaver
Anne Cunningham ... Judith
Jack Watson ... Len Miller

Arthur Lowe ... Charles Slomer
Harry Markham ... Wade
George Sewell ... Jeff

Leonard Rossiter ... Phillips, Sports writer
Katherine Parr ... Mrs. Farrer
Bernadette Benson ... Lynda Hammond
Andrew Nolan ... Ian Hammond
Peter Duguid ... Doctor
Wallas Eaton ... Waiter
Anthony Woodruff ... Tom, Headwaiter
Michael Logan ... Riley
Murray Evans ... Hooker
Tom Clegg ... Gower
Ken Traill ... Trainer
Frank Windsor ... Dentist
John Gill ... Cameron
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Edward Fox ... Restaurant Barman (uncredited)

Glenda Jackson ... Singer At Party (uncredited)
Roy Lansford ... Man in Pub (uncredited)
Graham Roberts ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Anton Rodgers ... Restaurant Customer (uncredited)
David Storey ... Rugby Player (uncredited)

Directed by
Lindsay Anderson 
 
Writing credits
David Storey (based on the novel by)

David Storey (screenplay)

Produced by
Leslie Parkyn .... co-executive producer
Karel Reisz .... producer
Julian Wintle .... co-executive producer
 
Original Music by
Roberto Gerhard 
 
Cinematography by
Denys N. Coop (photographed by) (as Denys Coop)
 
Film Editing by
Peter Taylor 
 
Art Direction by
Alan Withy 
 
Costume Design by
Sophie Devine (dresses)
 
Makeup Department
Ivy Emmerton .... hairdresser
Bob Lawrance .... makeup artist (as Bob Lawrence)
 
Production Management
Albert Fennell .... in charge of production
Geoffrey Haine .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ted Sturgis .... assistant director
Ken Softley .... third assistant director (uncredited)
Claude Watson .... second assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Peter Lamont .... set dresser
Ernie Quick .... propertyman
E.W. Brister .... scenic artist (uncredited)
Eric Saw .... draughtsman (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Chris Greenham .... sound editor
Gordon K. McCallum .... sound recordist
John W. Mitchell .... sound recordist
Ron Butcher .... sound camera operator (uncredited)
Ken Cameron .... dubbing crew (uncredited)
Trevor Carless .... boom assistant (uncredited)
Tony Cripps .... boom operator (uncredited)
Frank Sloggett .... sound assistant (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Charles Staffell .... special effects (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
John Harris .... camera operator
Neil Binney .... focus puller (uncredited)
Christopher Neame .... camera assistant (uncredited)
George Courtney Ward .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Casting Department
Miriam Brickman .... casting
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Vi Murray .... wardrobe mistress
 
Editorial Department
Tom Priestley .... assistant editor
Philip Baker .... second assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Jacques-Louis Monod .... musical director
Gary Hughes .... composer: additional music (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Pamela Mann .... continuity
Malcolm Taylor .... dialogue coach
Bob Herrington .... publicist (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
134 min | West Germany:122 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Finland:K-16 | UK:X (original rating) | UK:15 (video rating) | UK:12A (2009) | UK:AA (re-rating) (1970) | USA:Not Rated | USA:TV-MA (TV rating) | West Germany:16 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Sean Connery was considered to play Frank Machin. Although he was interested in the film, it was decided that he lacked the finesse and aggression required.See more »
Quotes:
Frank Machin:[to scantily clad nightclub singer] Eh love, show us your personality!See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Is That All There Is? (1993)See more »
Soundtrack:
Here In My HeartSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
13 out of 20 people found the following review useful.
Brilliant, Memorable; Yet ...., 2 March 2006
Author: David (Handlinghandel) from NY, NY

I saw this at a theater years ago. It had sunk into what appears to be obscurity -- highly undeservedly. Tonight I saw it on the small screen. And as powerful and, oddly, as shockingly intimate as it is, it doesn't work as well this way.

Why? The reason is the structure. The straightforward scenes are searing.. But there are hallucinations that have Richard Harris now in one situation, then in another, then lying back in the dentist's chair. Call me a Philistine but on a 20-inch screen this Resnais-like "Is it or isn't it?" is hard to follow.

That said, it is a beautiful movie overall. The lead performances have rarely been equaled. Richard Harris, as a headstrong rugby player, is convincing 100%. Rachel Roberts plays the rather dour, confused and grieving widow from whom he lets a room and whom he loves. She was not conventionally beautiful but she had extraordinary screen presence. Their every scene together is chilling and poignant.

The structure is there. The movie is finished and could never be properly well made. It is a sort of angry young man meets French New Wave. Anyone reading this who might be put off by my confession about finding it a bit rough to follow on a TV screen: Please do not be put off. This is a very serious, insightful movie, well performed all around. And you are unlikely to see Harris better in anything else and, sadly, unlikely to see Ms. Roberts in much else at all.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (65 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for This Sporting Life (1963)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Flashback Structure Flawed? davidarnold
SPOILER ALERT: Mrs. Margaret Hammond's children Noir-It-All
Edward Fox bit role? jeremy3
The spider grahamchris
Is it just me.... Jasonroides84
Two silly premises ianprl
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