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Scum (1979)

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An uncompromising story of life in a British juvenile offender institution in the 70's.

Director:

Alan Clarke

Writer:

Roy Minton
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ray Winstone ... Carlin
Mick Ford ... Archer
Julian Firth ... Davis
John Blundell ... Banks
Phil Daniels ... Richards
John Fowler John Fowler ... Woods
Ray Burdis Ray Burdis ... Eckersley
Patrick Murray Patrick Murray ... Dougan
Herbert Norville Herbert Norville ... Toyne
George Winter George Winter ... Rhodes
Alrick Riley ... Angel
Peter Francis Peter Francis ... Baldy
Philip DaCosta Philip DaCosta ... Jackson (as Philip Da Costa)
Perry Benson Perry Benson ... Formby
Alan Igbon ... Meakin
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Storyline

An uncompromising story of life in a British juvenile offender institution in the 70's.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A fact of life. (double-bill release with Quadrophenia whose tagline is A way of life). See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook [Japan]

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 September 1979 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Escoria See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£250,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The earlier and original TV version of this movie, Scum (1977), made for the BBC, but banned by them, was never screened until around fifteen years later in 1991, after the director's death, and part of a season on censorship. The BBC said that they banned it because "There was too much incident packed into too short a time and that they doubted the veracity." So they thought it was pure fiction, but they also said that it "looked too much like a documentary". See more »

Goofs

All Borstal inmates were subject to the same mandatory haircut of short back and sides, yet a vast array of hairstyles are shown throughout the film, including afros. See more »

Quotes

[Mr Sands finds Banks on the floor]
Mr Sands: [grabs Banks and slams him against a wall] Dozy bastard, Banks! You let him do you over, you twat!
Banks: I slipped, sir.
[Mr Sands slaps him]
Mr Sands: Don't come at me! Who d'yer think yer talking to? Carlin! I want you to name Carlin!
Banks: I slipped, sir.
[Mr Sands slaps him again]
See more »

Alternate Versions

A heavily censored version was shown on Channel Four Television in the UK in the early nineties, with the rape of Davis and his subsequent gory suicide considerably trimmed to diminish their impact. More recently, Channel Four have shown the film in its uncut form. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Video Nasties: Draconian Days (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Dirty Last Night
(uncredited)
Music by John Dickson and Elfed Hayes
De Wolfe Music Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

Truly disturbing
3 October 1999 | by Jamie-86See all my reviews

Be warned that you should go into this film with your guard up. By the time the final scene has faded quietly out, you will probably be in a state of shock.

The film details life in a Borstal institution and the violence and racial hatred that runs rampant through both the prisoners and their wardens. There is nothing cheery here at all and that is precisely the point. Director Alan Clarke deliberately films with a documentary style and it is this realism that makes the film so shattering. Scenes of sexual and racial abuse are placed in front of the camera and no raw nerve is spared the touch of the film.

It should be shown to youngsters as a reason not to turn to crime.


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