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Brassed Off (1996)

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The coal mine in a northern English village may be closing, which would also mean the end of the miners' brass band.



Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 10 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Stephen Tompkinson ...
Peter Martin ...
Lill Roughley ...
Stephen Moore ...
Greasley (as Ken Colley)
Olga Grahame ...
Mrs. Foggan


In existence for a hundred years, Grimley Colliery Brass band is as old as the mine. But the miners are now deciding whether to fight to keep the pit open, and the future for town and band looks bleak. Although the arrival of flugelhorn player Gloria injects some life into the players, and bandleader Danny continues to exhort them to continue in the national competition, frictions and pressures are all too evident. And who's side is Gloria actually on? Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

band | hope | colliery | miner | brass band | See All (91) »


Fed up with the system. Ticked off at the establishment. And mad about... each other.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

23 May 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brassed Off!  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£1,674,359 (UK) (15 November 1996)


$2,560,471 (USA) (8 August 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Pete Postlethwaite was heavily criticized by ex-miners for claiming he supported the 1984 strike, but believed people should never burn coal. The last remaining coal mines in the UK closed largely as a result of the 2008 Climate Change Act. See more »


Halifax Judge: [Ernie takes the trophy anyway] Hang on, he refused it!
Ernie: Don't talk so damn soft.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The beginning of the closing credits is headed by the silouhette of a trumpet. See more »


Featured in Breakfast: Episode dated 8 July 2011 (2011) See more »


The Floral Dance
Written by Katie Moss (as K. Moss)
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User Reviews

Wonderful film with few weaknesses.
23 March 1999 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

A superb film. A film which did not seek to glamourise the effect of long term unemployment and the break up of communities. And a film which WAS based very closely on a true story. The band members you see actually playing the music? That's the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, winners of the national Battle of the Bands competition in the year that the colliery closed down. And they did turn professional too!

Films like Brassed Off, which seek to present a view of a sensitive issue, are often derided for not offering a solution which can be written on the back of a cereal box. Personally, I take that as a recommendation!

The point of the film is this: put people in situations that most of us will happily never face, and they react in extreme fashions. There was little or no 'political' argument, other than the fact that the Conservative Government of the time did destroy an entire industry. That same government them spent millions of pounds a year buying coal from Europe and South America. Angry? I would be.

I saw characters portrayed in their entirety, which meant 'scabs' and 'sellouts' rubbed shoulders with the committed and poor. I saw unflattering portraits of basically decent people, prepared to risk friendships and relationships to keep alive an industry which was killing them but without which they could not live. It was a desperate time, and the fact that families have been split since the 1984 strike shows just how deep feelings can run on this issue.

And I saw no skipping over the holes in the logic either. No mention of the 4-1 vote in favour of closing the mine? Half of the chuffing film was about that! What about the fate of Gloria's report? What about Phil, a striker from 1984, voting for closure? Did no-one notice that he was one of the major characters?

I do think that there were some problems with the structure of the film (although it was dramatically more satisfying than the Full Monty). Gloria was unconvincing; the wives were underused, and the speech at the end, yes, I found it embarrassing too!

But please, before you attack the veracity of such a rounded and honest film as Brassed Off, take the time and trouble to watch it properly first!

21 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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