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The annual British Hairdressing Championship comes to Keighley, a town where Phil and son Brian run a barbershop and Phil's ex-wife Shelly and her lover Sandra run a beauty salon. Phil and Shelly haven't talked in ten years, since she bolted; she's just found out her cancer is terminal; and, Ray Roberts, the reigning hairdressing champion, blows into town taunting Phil for retreating from competitive styling into barbering. Roberts also brings his daughter, Christina, who remembers Brian from when she was a little kid. Everything's set: Brian decides to enter the competition with his mom and Sandra; will Phil join in? Ray wants to win at any cost; will Christina go along? Written by
Make sure your hairdresser hasn't seen this film before you make your appointment!
A welcome break from the usual gratuitous violence of the average modern film, this is a colourful fantasy with some excellent performances from British stalwarts. The wonderful Alan Rickman plays Phil, the deserted and disappointed husband of Shelley, played poignantly by Natasha Richardson. Phil owns a small barber's shop in the Yorkshire town of Keighley, but in the past he has been a champion in UK hairdressing. However, life's traumas have reduced him to giving up any thought of ambitions on the public hairdressing stage. When former rival hairdresser Raymond, (Bill Nighy) arrives in Phil's home town for the national hairdressing championships the scene is set for a dramatic confrontation and by the end of the competition many people's lives have altered. Warren Clarke gives a bravura performance as the town's mayor, who gradually metamorphoses from a boring local official to an ever more ebullient show host. The requisite romance is provided with a touch of the Romeo-and-Juliets. This will probably be considered a `woman's film' but every hairdresser in Britain of either sex will want to see it. Overall, although the progression of the plot is fairly predictable, if you can leave your critical faculties at home for the evening it could be an enjoyable fairy story.
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