Kes (1969)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Family  |  3 April 1970 (UK)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 11,958 users  
Reviews: 75 user | 56 critic

A young, English working-class boy spends his free time caring for and training his pet falcon.


(as Kenneth Loach)


(book), (adaptation), 2 more credits »
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Won 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Freddie Fletcher ...
Lynne Perrie ...
Mrs. Casper
Mr. Farthing
Mr. Sugden
Bob Bowes ...
Mr. Gryce
Bernard Atha ...
Youth Employment Officer
Laurence Bould
Joey Kaye ...
Comedian at Pub
Ted Carroll
Robert Naylor ...
Agnes Drumgoon
George Speed ...
Billy's Friend
Desmond Guthrie
Zoe Sutherland ...


Bullied at school and ignored and abused at home by his indifferent mother and older brother, Billy Casper (David Bradley), a 15-year-old working-class Yorkshire boy, tames and trains his pet kestrel falcon whom he names Kes. Helped and encouraged by his English teacher Mr. Farthing (Colin Welland) and his fellow students, Billy finally finds a positive purpose to his unhappy existence, until tragedy strikes. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They beat him. They deprived him. They ridiculed him. They broke his heart. But they couldn't break his spirit.


Drama | Family

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, nudity and some teen smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

3 April 1970 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

'Kes' - falken  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Yorkshire dialect used in the film is difficult for some other English-speakers to understand. Some scenes in the recent DVD and VHS releases have been dubbed (e.g. the opening scene) to reduce the dialect, and the film was entirely dubbed when released in the USA. See more »


When the PE teacher is explaining the meaning of the word "stimulating" to Goodfry, he spells the word incorrectly. See more »


Billy: [training his falcon] C'mon Kes!
Billy: C'mon Kes!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The majority of the crew were listed simply under the heading "This film was made by..." without each person's specific job title (director of photography, sound recordist, editor etc) being given. See more »


Featured in The Culture Show: British Film Special (2007) See more »


Written by Bobby Russell
Performed at the club
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Grim but Absolutely Captivating
10 November 1998 | by See all my reviews

One of the defining films of my life. Very few films have come so close to accurately portraying Northern, English, Working Class life. Anyone from outside of this kind of community may find it grim and not appreciate the all the references. As someone who grew up at the same time and in a similar environment as the film then all I can see is the wit, spirit and sensitivity displayed in the face of individual and institutionalised brutality.

David Bradley as Billy is superb and even more amazing is the fact he did nothing before or since this film. All of the incidental characters are played by local residents - unfortunately this is sometimes clearly obvious. The football match however is, in my opinion, a classic cinematic moment.

The film has become even more poignant since many similar communities have since been devastated by the Thatcherite induced collapse of Britain's industrial base.

All in all a exceeding moving, funny, honest and captivating account of a young boy's life in a sometimes hostile, sometimes beautiful environment.

28 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Was 1960s England really so gloomy and depressing? pilarp-1
US users' rating is 6.0 . canonalan
most memorable scene an-only-twin
AMAZING PhrenicGermal
american release secondsunday251
locations carlin4737
Discuss Kes (1969) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: