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Flamboyant entertainer Ian Dury, backed by the Blockheads, takes to the stage, explaining to his audience how, as a child, he contracted polio from a swimming pool and attended a special needs school where he was bullied, particularly by orderly Hargreaves, a fact which shaped his tough and frequently iconoclastic approach to life, culminating in his controversial contribution to the Year of the Disabled. From his early days with Kilburn and the High Roads, playing seedy pubs with no dressing rooms Ian moves onto chart success with the Blockheads, collaborating with musician Chaz Jankel. His private life is complicated as, separated from the tolerant Betty with whom he remains friends but refuses to divorce for many years, he lives with the much younger Denise along with his adored son Baxter, who will himself become a performer. Ian dies in 2000, having packed an enormous amount of living into a comparatively short life. Written by
don @ minifie-1
Filmed around Egham and Watford between April-June 2009. See more »
In the Kilburns' pub gig towards the start of the film (in the early 70s), the drummer is playing Sabian cymbals (a Sabian logo is clearly visible when the audience start throwing toilet rolls). The Sabian cymbal company didn't exist until 1981. See more »
I thought that "Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll" was an excellent biopic of the late, great Ian Dury who, stricken by Polio at an early age went on against all odds to be a leading player / singer in the emerging punk scene of the 70's and onwards ...
The cast was very strong, especially the lead role played fantastically well by Andy Serkis (aka Gollum Lord of the Rings, King Kong King Kong), Naomie Harris (After the Sunset, Pirates of the Caribbean At World's End) as Ian's girlfriend Denise and Bill Milner (Son of Rambow, Is there Anybody there?) as Ian's son Baxter.
The film takes you through Ian Dury's funny / sad / dynamic / and often chaotic life with a collation of live performances, flashbacks and monologues often driven by the great lyrics of the songs themselves this is very well done
The director (Mat Whitecross)moves the film along at a good pace and gets the very best performances out of the actors and the casting of Andy Serkis as Ian Dury was a masterstroke I would not be at all surprised if he was nominated for best actor in the Oscars for this amazing performance. I would believe that even Ian Drury would have been impressed by Serkis's performance!
I found this to be a very poignant, entertaining film that (I believe) fairly accurately depicts the life and times of the late, great Ian Dury and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this film.
For those that previously enjoyed the music of Ian Dury and the Blockheads you will love this film for those that haven't heard the music before "What a Waste!" get ready to be converted for you'll have "Reasons to be cheerful" when Ian Dury "Hit's you with his Rhythm Stick!"
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