7.1/10
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Brassed Off (1996)

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

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

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Jim
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Ida
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Lill Roughley ...
Rita
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Stephen Moore ...
McKenzie
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Greasley (as Ken Colley)
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Mrs. Foggan
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

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

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

23 May 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brassed Off!  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£1,674,359 (UK) (15 November 1996)

Gross:

$2,560,471 (USA) (10 August 1997)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was cited in a 2012 published thesis by Dr. David Amos at the University of Nottingham to illustrate the grave offensiveness of the word "scab" among miners in Britain. See more »

Quotes

Andy: Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, hey ladies?
Vera: Aye, but we can do without the drugs and rock 'n' roll!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Person With Most Credits - Trevor Jones See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Colonel Bogey
Composed by Kenneth Alford (as Alford)
Published by Boosey and Hawkes Music Publishing Limited
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User Reviews

 
Land of bloody hope and glory eh!
25 February 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Grimley Colliery Brass Band has been going for nigh on a century, but as the town's colliery itself comes under threat of closure due to the drawn out miners strikes, so does the bands very own survival. Giving much relief to a very depressed area, the band are hoping to make the grand finals day at the Royal Albert Hall, could the arrival of Flugelhorn player, Gloria, be just what the band needs? Or is she merely the catalyst to something far more critical?

Brassed Off is the first of what I personally call the Magical British Trio, three films that perfectly portray the British sense of humour during dark depressing times of unemployment. The other two of course are The Full Monty (1997) and Billy Elliot (2000), of which Brassed Off is essentially an appetiser of sorts, the warm up act for the big hitters so to speak. Not to say that Brassed Off is not worthy to sit alongside those well received pictures (home and abroad as they say), it most certainly is, it's just that its blend of humour and strife doesn't find any easy ground, thus making it hard for the undiscerning viewer to be at ease at the right moments. It is in short, unsure of what it primarily wants to be. The humour does work well tho, but it's in the dramatic core of the miners strikes, and the affects they have on the denizens of this quaint colliery town, that Brassed Off truly works, with some scenes literally tugging away at the old heart strings. Then there be the music itself, The Grimethorpe Colliery Band {on whose real life story this film is based} provide the music for the soundtrack, and its most enjoyable, often stirring, and definitely poignant at crucial moments.

The cast are tremendous, Ewan McGregor and Tara Fitzgerald offer up splendid youthful heart, but they are playing second fiddle (or should that be third brass section?) to Pete Postlethwaite and Stephen Tompkinson. As father and son, Postlethwaite and Tompkinson give the film its deep emotional being, each driven by differing needs, Brassed Off's success rests with both men being able to hold the viewers attention from the get go. Tompkinson has made a very profitable and thriving career in British Television, and rightly so, but it remains criminal that he didn't go on and make more well known and profitable full length feature films after his fabulous turn here. Filmed in the ideal Northern English town of Barnsley, South Yorkshire, Brassed Off is a film that has evident problems, but to someone like me, a Brit who lived thru those depressing days under Margaret Thatcher's government, it's a film that I love for a myriad of reasons, one can only hope that one of those reasons strikes a chord with yourselves.

A completely biased 9/10 from me!


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