6.9/10
12,778
67 user 51 critic

My Beautiful Laundrette (1985)

An ambitious Pakistani Briton and his white boyfriend strive for success and hope when they open a glamorous laundromat.

Director:

Stephen Frears

Writer:

Hanif Kureishi (by)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Day-Lewis ... Johnny (as Daniel Day Lewis)
Richard Graham ... Genghis
Winston Graham Winston Graham ... Jamaican One
Dudley Thomas Dudley Thomas ... Jamaican Two
Derrick Branche ... Salim
Garry Cooper ... Squatter
Gordon Warnecke ... Omar
Roshan Seth ... Papa Hussein
Saeed Jaffrey ... Uncle Nasser
Shirley Anne Field ... Rachel
Charu Bala Chokshi Charu Bala Chokshi ... Bilquis (as Charu Bala Choksi)
Souad Faress ... Cherry
Rita Wolf ... Tania
Persis Maravala Persis Maravala ... Nasser's Elder Daughter
Nisha Kapur Nisha Kapur ... Nasser's Younger Daughter
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Storyline

Much of the Pakistani Hussein family has settled in London, striving for the riches promised by Thatcherism. Nasser and his right hand man, Salim, have a number of small businesses and they do whatever they need to make money, even if the activities are illegal. As such, Nasser and his immediate family live more than a comfortable lifestyle, and he flaunts his riches whenever he can. Meanwhile, his brother, alcoholic Ali, once a famous journalist in Pakistan, lives in a seedy flat with his son, Omar. Ali's life in London is not as lucrative in part because of his left leaning politics, which does not mesh with the ideals of Thatcherism. To help his brother, Nasser gives Omar a job doing menial labor. But Omar, with bigger plans, talks Nasser into letting him manage Nasser's run down laundrette. Omar seizes what he sees as an opportunity to make the laundrette a success, and employs an old friend, Johnny - who has been most recently running around with a gang of white punks - to help ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Urdu

Release Date:

4 April 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Minha Bela Lavandaria See more »

Filming Locations:

UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£650,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,451,545
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

My Beautiful Laundrette (1985) and A Room with a View (1985) both opened in New York on the same day, March 7, 1986. Both movies featured Daniel Day-Lewis in prominent and very different roles: in A Room with a View, he played a repressed, snobbish Edwardian upperclassman, while in Laundrette, he played a lower-class gay ex-skinhead in love with an ambitious Pakistani businessman in Thatcher's London. When American critics saw Day-Lewis, who was then virtually unknown in the US, in two such different roles on the same day, many (including Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun-Times and Vincent Canby of The New York Times) raved about the talent it must have taken him to play such vastly different characters. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Johnny: We're moving house.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Bubble (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

Politics, Sex, and Punk Rock
6 June 2002 | by MartinInaneSee all my reviews

Want to see a side of London you won't get from any other director? Then watch My Beautiful Launderette... The film opens with a scene in which squatters are forcibly evicted from a derelict building. Londoner viewers will recognize this as a sad yet common event... Immediately, we are attuned to the political bent of the movie. Fortunately for that intent, the dialogue in the film is intelligently written (note: this will not appeal to the lowest common denominator -- it scores low on commercial appeal). Unfortunately, the often "stiff" delivery of that dialogue is a significant impediment. That said, Daniel Day Lewis lends a powerful presence to his role as the punk squatter, Johnny.

The climax of the film aptly integrates the various tensions in the film: political, sexual, and social. We're surprised with a love scene between Johnny and Omar which is well-paced, erotic, and genuine.


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