7.5/10
22,578
169 user 50 critic

Beautiful Thing (1996)

Jamie is a shy teenager, often bullied at school. His neighbour Ste has a rough time at home, being beaten by his father and brother. This issues bring them together and they find that what they feel for each other is more than friendship.

Director:

Hettie Macdonald

Writers:

Jonathan Harvey, Jonathan Harvey (play)
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4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Linda Henry ... Sandra Gangel
Glen Berry ... Jamie Gangel
Scott Neal ... Ste Pearce
Tameka Empson ... Leah Russell
Ben Daniels ... Tony
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Benfield ... Rodney Barr
Daniel Bowers Daniel Bowers ... Trevor Pearce
Garry Cooper ... Ronnie Pearce
Terry Duggan Terry Duggan ... Kevin
Jeillo Edwards ... Rose
Andrew Fraser Andrew Fraser ... Jayson
Beth Goddard ... Brewery Official
Davyd Harries ... Brewery Official
Anna Karen ... Marlene
Dave Lynn Dave Lynn ... Drag Performer
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Storyline

A tender love story set during a hot summer on a South-East London housing estate. Jamie, a relatively unpopular lad who bunks off school to avoid football, lives next door to Ste, a more popular athletic lad but who is frequently beaten up by his father and older brother. Such an episode of violence brings Jamie and Ste together: Sandra (Jamie's mum) offers refugee to Ste, who has to 'top-and-tail' with Jamie. Hence, the story tells of their growing attraction for one another, from initial lingering glances to their irrefutable love, which so magnificently illustrated at the end of the film. It deals with the tribulations of coming to terms with their sexuality and of others finding out, in light of Sandra's unwavering loyalty and defence of Jamie and the fear of repercussion should Ste's family find out. The plot is set against sub-texts of Sandra's desire to manage her own pub, and thus escape the estate, and of her new relationship with her hippy boyfriend Tony; and of Leah, the ... Written by Mark Edwards <me93fm@soton.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

An urban fairytale.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality, pervasive strong language and some drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Sandra recalls that Cass Elliot died by choking on a sandwich she is repeating an urban legend. "Mama" Cass actually died of heart failure. Reports immediately after her death (before the autopsy) apparently quoted her doctor as saying she probably died by choking on a sandwich. Despite the results of the autopsy, the sandwich story has stuck. See more »

Goofs

When Jamie is in the tobacconist's looking at the magazines, there are three copies of "Gay Times" in the long shot, but only two in the closeup. See more »

Quotes

Ste: [reading magazine] You cannot transmit the HIV virus by frottage.
Ste: What's frottage?
Jamie Gangel: It's yogurt. It's French.
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Soundtracks

Sixteen, Going On Seventeen
By Richard Rodgers (as Rodgers) & Oscar Hammerstein II (as Hammerstein)
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User Reviews

 
The Brits do it again...
9 February 2004 | by derekkosillaSee all my reviews

It seems when it comes to gay-themed movies, the Brits outdo us Americans hands down. This movie is another example of this fact. This movie rates as one of the best in this genre. Get Real comes a close second.

The young actors that play Jamie and Ste do an extraordinary job sometimes forgetting how well they pull off such complex characters throughout the movie. I think any gay man growing up can relate to Jamie. He doesn't excel in sports, and almost too smart for his own mother. He is comfortable with his sexuality, and he doesn't give a damn what the world thinks of him. Ste, on the other hand, fears his older brother, and his father made his life miserable. As he states in the film, "they made me ugly". Ste is not all ugly, and Jamie realizes this, and is attracted to his brash, manly demeanor. Unfortunately, Ste's own demons and his insecurities are present throughout the film. At one point, Ste ashamed of rumors of his questionable sexuality, denies it to a heartbroken Jamie.

Obviously, I enjoyed this movie. The scenes between Jamie and his mother and likewise, between Jamie and Ste, are perhaps the best parts of the movie. I understand having Leah in the movie to provide the supporting role of comic relief was a necessity in most film requirements, but in this one, it distracted the viewer to an extent. I was so glad when it came out on DVD, so I can put my last VHS tape to rest, but disappointed that there were no cast interviews or extras at the end. Granted, the movie was made six years or so after the DVD came out, but you might think the film makers would find something of interest.

So England what will be the next great gay movie ?


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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 October 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Beautiful Thing See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$33,931, 13 October 1996

Gross USA:

$1,548,120

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,548,120
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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