The Short & Curlies (1988)

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A short comedy by Mike Leigh about the romance between a young woman and a man who communicates only through jokes and humor. The story is told as a series of very short vignettes between ... See full summary »

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Title: The Short & Curlies (1988– )

The Short & Curlies (1988– ) on IMDb 6.7/10

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Betty
...
Joy
...
Clive
Wendy Nottingham ...
Charlene
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Storyline

A short comedy by Mike Leigh about the romance between a young woman and a man who communicates only through jokes and humor. The story is told as a series of very short vignettes between her and the man and her and her doting mother, a hairdresser. Written by Sean V. Taylor <st52@cornell.edu>

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Release Date:

29 September 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Krótkie i krecone  »

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Trivia

This short film is featured on the Criterion Collection DVD for Naked (1993). See more »

Connections

Edited into Cinema16: British Short Films (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"I wouldn't be joking all the time if I wasn't serious."
2 March 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Not a lot "happens" in The Short & Curlies, but Mike Leigh doesn't need a whole lot of dramatic things to "happen", he just needs characters that will get some attention for 18 minutes. He gets that, and this is what makes it enjoyable and even tender and deep for a little bit. It's simply about a young woman, Joy, who works at a pharmacy and is romanced by a Clive, a young geeky guy who speaks in one-liners (some decent, some not worthy of that so-bad-it's-funny bad pun status). He says a line in the film that sums him up though about being serious underneath all of his jokes. His interest and sincerity in her is real, which is perhaps what makes Joy tolerate him so much, even as she is around Betty, a hairdresser who can't stop gawking at hot men on the tele (even if they are not to Joy) and can talk a mile while doing crazy things with hair.

It's nothing very remarkable, but it's a good short because it doesn't overstay its welcome, it has some strong talent working in front of the camera- David Thewlis in an early role shows how much he can do with so little and Sylvestra Le Touzel, an actress I've never seen or heard of before this and surprised me with her subtlety and little glances that make her character richer- and the ending is a solid, bittersweet touch. Don't rush out to track it down unless you're a big Mike Leigh fan-boy or girl, but if you happen to already have or seek out the Naked Criterion DVD anyway then it's not something to pass by either.


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