5.6/10
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Absolute Beginners (1986)

PG-13 | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 18 April 1986 (USA)
In 1958 London a young photographer seeks media stardom to keep the love of a beautiful, aspiring fashion designer.

Director:

Julien Temple

Writers:

Colin MacInnes (based on the novel by), Michael Hamlyn (developed for the screen by) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Patsy Kensit ... Suzette
Eddie O'Connell Eddie O'Connell ... Colin
David Bowie ... Vendice Partners
James Fox ... Henley of Mayfair
Ray Davies ... Arthur
Mandy Rice-Davies Mandy Rice-Davies ... Mum
Eve Ferret ... Big Jill
Tony Hippolyte Tony Hippolyte ... Mr. Cool
Graham Fletcher-Cook ... Wizard
Joseph McKenna Joseph McKenna ... Fabulous Hoplite (as Joe McKenna)
Steven Berkoff ... The Fanatic
Sade ... Athene Duncannon (as Sade Adu)
Edward Tudor-Pole ... Ed the Ted (as Tenpole Tudor)
Bruce Payne ... Flikker
Alan Freeman Alan Freeman ... Call-Me-Cobber
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Storyline

A musical adaptation of Colin MacInnes' novel about life in late 1950s London. Nineteen-year-old photographer Colin is hopelessly in love with model Crepe Suzette, but her relationships are strictly connected with her progress in the fashion world. So Colin gets involved with a pop promoter and tries to crack the big time. Meanwhile, racial tension is brewing in Colin's Notting Hill housing estate... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Sounds. The Moves. The Style. The Magic. The Musical. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 April 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Absolutamente Principiantes See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$83,743, 20 April 1986, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$930,211
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Rankcolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

About 38 minutes into the film, Colin enters the flat of Mr. Cool who is looking out the window. Colin briefly picks up the cover of the 1959 Miles Davis album "Porgy and Bess." That album featured arrangements by, and an orchestra under the direction of, Gil Evans who did the score for this film. See more »

Goofs

When Harry Charms is auditioning young singers with Colin, there is a boom mic visible when Harry and Colin first enter the studio. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Colin: [narrating] I remember that hot, wonderful summer. When the teenage miracle reached full bloom and everyone in England stopped what they were doing to stare at what had happened. The Soho nights were cool in the heat, with light and music in the streets. And we couldn't believe that this was really coming to us at last. Nobody knew exactly why. But after so many dreary years of bombs and blitz and slow rebuilding; no sugar, no jam, nothing sweet anywhere; with the whole English ...
See more »

Connections

Edited into Ray Davies: Quiet Life (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Selling Out
Performed by Slim Gaillard
Composed by Tot Taylor, Julien Temple and Slim Gaillard
See more »

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User Reviews

Exhilarating Adrenalin Rush
2 May 2001 | by kryan-1See all my reviews

What a Corker of a movie which moves at a lightning pace of youth in the 1950's based on the youth culture book by Colin McInnes. We see the birth of the teenager in Britain wiping away the grey cobwebs of post war Britain and revitalising it with a kaleidoscope of colour. Eddie O'Donnell is the spunky immaculately dressed hedonist who wants to dance and carouse the night away in Swinging London and Patsy Kensit's film debut is superb as Colin'ns(O'Donnel's) sex kitten who's a real temptress. The music score is excellent which interwines with the plot very well and some of London's well known honey pots are featured, like The Wag Club which is sadly no more. Ray Davies actually appears in the film, as does David Bowie and Sade.Not forgetting the great songs by The Style Council and Smiley Culture with an underlying jazz groove by Gil Evans. The Introduction to this movie is one of the best ever and features a cast of thousands. Congratulations Julian Temple on this aesthetic musical delight.


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