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Kes (1969)

PG-13 | | Drama , Family | 3 April 1970 (UK)
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1:40 | Trailer

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ON DISC
A young, English working-class boy spends his free time caring for and training his pet falcon.

Director:

Ken Loach (as Kenneth Loach)

Writers:

Barry Hines (novel), Barry Hines (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Won 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Bradley ... Billy
Freddie Fletcher Freddie Fletcher ... Jud
Lynne Perrie Lynne Perrie ... Mrs. Casper
Colin Welland ... Mr. Farthing
Brian Glover ... Mr. Sugden
Bob Bowes Bob Bowes ... Mr. Gryce
Bernard Atha Bernard Atha ... Youth Employment Officer
Laurence Bould Laurence Bould
Joey Kaye Joey Kaye ... Comedian at Pub
Ted Carroll
Robert Naylor Robert Naylor ... MacDowell
Agnes Drumgoon Agnes Drumgoon
George Speed George Speed ... Billy's Friend
Desmond Guthrie Desmond Guthrie
Zoe Sunderland Zoe Sunderland ... Librarian (as Zoe Sutherland)
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Storyline

Bullied at school and ignored and abused at home by his indifferent mother and older brother, Billy Casper (David Bradley), a 15-year-old working-class Yorkshire boy, tames and trains his pet kestrel falcon whom he names Kes. Helped and encouraged by his English teacher Mr. Farthing (Colin Welland) and his fellow students, Billy finally finds a positive purpose to his unhappy existence, until tragedy strikes. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They beat him. They deprived him. They ridiculed him. They broke his heart. But they couldn't break his spirit.

Genres:

Drama | Family

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, nudity and some teen smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 April 1970 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

'Kes' - falken See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A reference is made to Billy coming from Biafra. The Nigerian-Biafran War (1967-1970) resulted in large numbers of Biafrans facing starvation. Images portrayed in the media represented Biafran children as suffering the greatest. This humanitarian crisis entered the public consciousness and the term 'Biafran' came to be applied to a very skinny person. See more »

Goofs

Member of crew visible (with a beard) in the scene where Mr. Sugden is selecting the football teams. See more »

Quotes

Billy: [training his falcon] C'mon Kes!
[whistling]
Billy: C'mon Kes!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The majority of the crew were listed simply under the heading "This film was made by..." without each person's specific job title (director of photography, sound recordist, editor etc) being given. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Diggs (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

"New Every Morning Is the Love'
Lyrics by John Keble
Music by Samuel Webbe
Hymn sung at school
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User Reviews

 
Grim but Absolutely Captivating
10 November 1998 | by jackhuntSee all my reviews

One of the defining films of my life. Very few films have come so close to accurately portraying Northern, English, Working Class life. Anyone from outside of this kind of community may find it grim and not appreciate the all the references. As someone who grew up at the same time and in a similar environment as the film then all I can see is the wit, spirit and sensitivity displayed in the face of individual and institutionalised brutality.

David Bradley as Billy is superb and even more amazing is the fact he did nothing before or since this film. All of the incidental characters are played by local residents - unfortunately this is sometimes clearly obvious. The football match however is, in my opinion, a classic cinematic moment.

The film has become even more poignant since many similar communities have since been devastated by the Thatcherite induced collapse of Britain's industrial base.

All in all a exceeding moving, funny, honest and captivating account of a young boy's life in a sometimes hostile, sometimes beautiful environment.


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