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My Childhood (1972)

7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 534 users  
Reviews: 5 user | 8 critic

The first part of Bill Douglas' influential trilogy harks back to his impoverished upbringing in early-'40s Scotland. Cinema was his only escape - he paid for it with the money he made from... See full summary »

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Title: My Childhood (1972)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Stephen Archibald ...
Hughie Restorick ...
Tommy
Jean Taylor Smith ...
Karl Fieseler ...
Helmuth
Bernard McKenna ...
Paul Kermack ...
Helena Gloag ...
Ann Smith ...
Jamie's Mother
Eileen McCallum ...
Nurse
Helen Rae ...
Bus Conductress
James Eccles ...
Man Singing
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Storyline

The first part of Bill Douglas' influential trilogy harks back to his impoverished upbringing in early-'40s Scotland. Cinema was his only escape - he paid for it with the money he made from returning empty jam jars - and this escape is reflected most closely at this time of his life as an eight-year-old living on the breadline with his half-brother and sick grandmother in a poor mining village. Written by J Ward

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Biography | Drama

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Release Date:

31 July 2013 (France)  »

Also Known As:

My Childhood  »

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Trivia

Filmed in colour, though all printed in black and white to obtain a charcoal-drawing effect. See more »

Connections

Featured in A Story of Children and Film (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Extraordinarily honest and Accomplished first feature
5 April 2013 | by (Salisbury, United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Firstly, to my surprise, my local lending library had this BFI Bill Douglas trilogy to rent for £1.90, for a week. The lady staff member added its second sticker on which they stamp the due date. It had been in the library since 2008. A few dozen borrowings in 5 years...

Secondly, all the reviews here outline much about the plot and story and its gritty, hard-to-take realism. I agree absolutely with all said. Radio Times online quote 'makes the relentless chill of poverty almost tangible'.

This is simple but extremely effective film-making, sparse dialogue, close-ups that show gestures and silence and natural sounds to accentuate those feelings. Heartwarming and heartbreaking, this is one film that is a must-see for all cineastes who think they know British film and really is on par with anything that the Italian or Russian greats have done.

You feel a certain numbness, a chill after viewing that tells you something - that it's touched you. Not too many films achieve that these days.


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