6.6/10
2,286
23 user 21 critic

A Private Function (1984)

R | | Comedy | 1 March 1985 (USA)
Trailer
2:33 | Trailer

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In post-war Britain, food rationing continues, leading a married couple to become involved in the flourishing bacon black market.

Director:

Malcolm Mowbray

Writers:

Alan Bennett, Alan Bennett (story) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Won 3 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Palin ... Gilbert Chilvers
Maggie Smith ... Joyce Chilvers
Denholm Elliott ... Dr. Swaby
Richard Griffiths ... Allardyce
Tony Haygarth ... Sutcliff
John Normington ... Lockwood
Bill Paterson ... Wormold
Liz Smith ... Mother
Alison Steadman ... Mrs Allardyce
Jim Carter ... Inspector Noble
Pete Postlethwaite ... Nuttal
Eileen O'Brien Eileen O'Brien ... Mrs Sutcliff
Rachel Davies ... Mrs. Forbes
Reece Dinsdale ... P.C. Penny
Philip Wileman Philip Wileman ... Preston Sutcliff
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Storyline

1947 in a small town in England. The war has been won two years ago, but there's still rationing of meat. When princess Elizabeth is going to marry, a group of businessmen wants to impress (or probably bribe) the local government by giving a big party. They want to slaughter an illegally raised pig for this event. Unfortunately someone steals the pig. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Vicious, Delicious and Tasteless.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Handmade Films Website

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 March 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Función privada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,333, 3 March 1985, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,527,088
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

HandMade Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Second of two star teamings of actress Maggie Smith and actor Michael Palin. The first was The Missionary (1982) around two years earlier. Actor Denholm Elliott appeared in both movies as well, as did another, Charles McKeown. See more »

Quotes

[the pig has been abducted]
Grand Hotel Manager: I can put my hands on two turkeys in Bradford.
Frank Lockwood the Solicitor: Two? TWO? We've got a hundred and fifty people coming! And Jesus isn't one of them!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in What the Pythons Did Next... (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Rose of England
Music by Ivor Novello
Played on piano by Maggie Smith
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Like something Ealing might have done
26 February 2006 | by MOscarbradleySee all my reviews

A near classic; like something Ealing might have done if, perhaps, raunchier though not necessarily darker. Set at the time of the present Queen Elizabeth's wedding to Prince Phillip, it's about the petty jealousies of the ostensible middle-classes of Northern ration-book Britain.

Michael Palin is Gilbert, a mild-mannered chiropodist, looked down upon, in all senses, by the local community who finds his trump card and way into society in the form of a pig that is being fattened for the private function of the title, a dinner for local dignitaries in celebration of the royal wedding. Maggie Smith is his genteel wife who turns into Lady MacBeth in pursuit of her dreams of fitting in and that great character actress Liz Smith is her slightly dotty mother. Scriptwriter Alan Bennet's depiction of the milieu of false noblesse oblige is as sharp as ever and the entire cast rise to the occasion.


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