Blow Dry (2001) Poster

(2001)

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Uplifting, complex, nuanced, unexpected and fresh.
budmassey29 January 2004
Blow Dry is one of those loopy, quirky British comedies that continue to scream to the deaf ears of Hollywood that humor doesn't have to be infantile, vulgar, sexual, physical, heavy-handed, or banal. It can be uplifting, complex, nuanced, unexpected and fresh.

A small town in England hosts the National Hairdressing Championships, (Do you really think they have one?) and nobody seems too excited about it except a few ruthless competitors to whom winning means absolutely everything. Local boy Alan Rickman, a has been hair wizard now doing "short back and sides" for 7.50 is convinced to enter the competition by his son, his ex-wife and her girlfriend.

Natasha Richardson (daughter of the incomparable Vanessa Redgrave) is brilliant as the terminally ill lesbian mother trying to use the event as a way to reunite her family. Her comedy and her pathos are equally moving, and her beauty isn't spoiled by chemotherapy-induced hair loss. Rachel Griffiths, whom you may remember from the hilarious Australian comedy Muriel's Wedding, is the model who left Rickman for his wife on the eve of his triumph in hairdressing, hence his present low state. Either of these ladies could have carried the movie. To have both of them is a treat of excess.

Rickman is more believable as a barber than a high style hairdresser. Still, he pulls it off because he's Rickman. Much has been made of Josh Hartnett and his murderous accent. In reality, it's hardly noticeable. Get over it.

Bill Nighy is fantastic as the unscrupulous London artiste pulling out all the stops to win the Championship for an unprecedented third time, using his daughter, the insanely beautiful Rachel Leigh Cook, as his model. Rosemary Harris, the perfectly cast Aunt Mae of Spider-man fame, is powerful as the elderly Daisy, confidante and model for Richardson and her team.

The unseen treasure of this movie, and the genius behind it, is writer Simon Beaufoy. Beaufoy grew up in Keighley, the setting of Blow Dry. Until more recently he was probably best known for also writing the hilarious and inspired The Full Monty. As he developed as a writer, he later gave us the Oscar nominated 127 Hours, and Oscar winning Slumdog Millionaire.

There is a scene, at the very end, when Rickman reveals his ultimate creation, that has to be seen to be believed. I still gasp every time I see it, and it reinforces for me a notion of beauty that transcends everything from age to gender. And don't miss the end credit sequence. It's hilarious.

Too many movie viewers think being cynical makes them appear more intelligent or more profound, so they slam gems like this for their lighthearted humor. Nonsense. This is a funny 10 out of 10, and if you don't own it, log off right now and go get it. You won't be sorry.
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9/10
You'll laugh and cry
SamRag5 August 2002
My wife had me convinced for a long time that I had seen this movie, but last night after I had searched for over 40 min for something to rent I took the risk and rented this movie. And of course I was right – I hadn't seen it! This is not a film one will forget having seen. As so often before the British are the strongest in character building, with every role filled with good actors and every detail and dialog driven to perfection. You might say that the story line is predictable, not to mention if you see "the making of" beforehand, which more or less tells you every detail of the story! Blow dry is one of these beautiful films that make you laugh and cry at the same time. You disappear into the film, becoming one with the characters and their lives. It has similarities to Brassed Off, both in scenery and storyline, but manages to stay original and unique. I loved it 9/10
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8/10
Blown Away by Blow Dry
BettieTeese12 March 2005
A film about hairdressing championships could be disastrous,but a superb cast of fine British actors saved this film from Stinkville.The storyline is actually not bad,and the rivalry between Phil Allen (Alan Rickman) and Raymond Robertson (Bill Nighy) is humorous and entertaining.While this movie is amusing and light hearted it does focus on sadder issues like broken families,and terminal illness.Australian actress Rachel Griffiths gives a fine performance and perfects a British accent for her role as Sandra,who is romantically involved with Shelley (Natasha Richardson)who lives in fear that the truth about her illness will ruin their relationship.Young stars Josh Hartnett and the very adorable Rachael Leigh Cook are pleasant contributions to the film,with their brother-sister chemistry and secret adoration for one another.Heidi Klum also makes a special appearance,and sports some outrageous hairdos and costumes.Blow Dry was a film that should've,could've and would've been disappointing,but for some reason,wasn't.
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7/10
The Strictly Ballroom of Hair
blanche-228 October 2014
Alan Rickman, Natasha Richardson, Bill Nighy, Josh Hartnett, Rachel Griffiths, and Rosemary Harris star in "Blow Dry," a 2000 film directed by Paddy Breathnach.

When the small town of Keighley wins the right to have The Annual British Hairdressing Championship, comes to Keighley, it brings up a few questions for Phil (Rickman) and his son Brian (Hartnett) run a barbershop, and where Phil's ex-wife Shelly (Richardson) and her girlfriend Sandra (Griffith) have a beauty salon. Since Shelly left Phil for Sandra, they have ceased talking. Shelly has just learned that she's come to the end of the line with her cancer.

Phil has no interest in competing, and one of his rivals, the cheating, underhanded Ray Roberts (Nighy) comes to town and ridicules him. Brian, however, wants to enter. Brian decides to enter the competition with Sandra and his mother. Now the question, will champion Phil enter as well? Ray is using his daughter as his model; Phil's model was once Sandra -- can they mend their rift and help Shelly through her last days? Funny, moving, and well-acted, Blow Dry is clever, fresh, and entertaining. The hairdressers test their blow-dryers and then compete in cut, styling, evening, and finally, full body, re-creating Nefertiti, as an example, or Madama Butterfly. Very serious judges score them. Hilarious.

Really lovely movie, about a family trying to come back together, letting go of bitterness and resentment to help someone they love. Terrific.
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7/10
Hair Today . . .
gpadillo23 August 2005
Despite a lot of Big Hair, this is not a big movie. Nonetheless, it is an enjoyable romp, with some affecting performances. There is nothing revelatory or even unpredictable about the story, but it works nicely and certainly entertains. The film does have a few rich moments, but seems mostly a vehicle for a group of talented actors (and it is a highly pedigreed bunch here) to take decent material and put out a fun and sometimes very moving film.

While it may drag a little in the center, don't give up watching for the finale and Rachel Griffiths "total look" finish that is about as outrageous and breathtaking a "total look" as one can possibly imagine. The normally brilliant Alan Rickman here sometimes feels just a little bit on autopilot, American Josh Hartnett is vastly underused, but surprisingly effective in an important role and Natasha Richardson, as ever, positively glows on the screen and raises the emotional and dramatic stakes to a level that makes the whole affair worthwhile.

Not great? Perhaps, but an immensely enjoyable little movie.
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6/10
Surprisingly Good Fun
sddavis6319 February 2002
I tuned into this movie not really expecting very much. I mean, how interesting could a movie about the British Hair Dressing Championships be, anyway? In fact, what I found was a quite funny movie with enough human interest thrown in to make it a worthwhile movie.

The story revolves around a hair dressing family who have been broken apart when Shelly (Natasha Richardson) leaves Phil (Alan Rickman) for Sandra (Rachel Griffiths). Son Brian (Josh Hartnett) stays with dad Phil and works in a barber shop with his dad - quite a step down for Phil, who used to be one of the best British hair dressers. The family is brought back together when the Hair Dressing Championships come to their home town, and Phil, Shelley, Sandra and Brian pool their resources to beat their rivals.

It's all quite well done, and the hair styles are - well - unbelievable in some cases. But there's also the backdrop of Sandra's illness that she's hiding from her lover Shelley.

All in all, although I'm not at all interested in hair dressing, I throughly enjoyed the time I spent watching this. Give it a try. You'll like it.

6/10
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A Cut Above
Wynter_Miller21 February 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Kieghley is a small Yorkshire village far from the fumes of the tour bus. Mayor Tony, overjoyed by his town's choice as host for the Year 2000 British Hairdressing Championship, announces this grand coup to a lukewarm response by the small group of townsfolk who bother to show up for his meeting.

Young Brian Allen(Josh Hartnett), however, is very excited. Full of expectations, he approaches his father, Phil Allen(Alan Rickman), proprietor of the local barber shop where Brian works as well. Brian's reminder to his dad that Phil has already twice won this championship is met with a low growl of parental hostility. Phil flatly refuses to discuss it, much less enter.

Blocks away, Shelley Allen(Natasha Richardson), walks the short distance to the local hospital for her doctor's appointment. Here, quite unexpectedly, this "light little film" delivers a heart punch. Watch Richardson's beautiful performance as the doctor reveals the cancer she's been battling is back. As he begins dispassionately discussing her treatment options, she forces him to make it personal by completing his speech with brutally honest cynicism ("Your last two treatments have failed, so its probably trying to tell you summit there..."). He urges her to consider another round of chemotherapy, but they both know she won't go through it again.

Richardson perfectly captures the dignity, and agony, of a bright, intelligent woman who, facing the fact she is dying, decides not to pursue a hopeless situation. Her exchange with Daisy(Rosemary Harris), a terminally ill inpatient at the hospital, is acerbically poignant. You get the sense that she's suspected this for quite some time, and now it's time to prepare to leave this life, and set her affairs in order.

To Shelley, the British Hairdressing Championship seems an ideal way to reconcile many old wrongs. An accomplished hairdresser, she owns the local beauty shop, living upstairs with her partner Sandra. Ten years before, she and husband Phil had competed for their third championship title with Sandra as their model. On the eve of competition, she and Sandra left Phil to enter into their lesbian relationship. Phil never forgave either one of them. Although just blocks from one another, he hasn't spoken to her, or Sandra, for years. Brian remained with his father after the breakup, and Shelley's relationship with him is, at best, awkward and strained.

Now, however, she desperately wants to change all that while there is still time. She wants the old team back together again for one last go. But how? Brian likes the idea but turns her down. He has issues with his mum. Sandra thinks the whole thing is mad, and hates Phil as much as he hates her. Phil wants no part of it whatsoever. His sense of betrayal and deeply abiding hurt are palpable. It seems impossible. Resolute, she enters her salon, A Cut Above, into the competition anyway, to the delight of Mayor Tony, who hypes the entry in an effort to foster local interest.

The contestants arrive with their glittering entourages. These include the infamous Raymond Robertson(Bill Nighy), with his unscrupulous assistant, Louis (Hugh Bonneville), and his daughter Christina(Rachel Leigh Cook), over from America on holiday.

The hotel is full, and Robertson is forced to lodge with a local sheep farmer. David Bradley (Argus Filch of Harry Potter) is terrific as Noah, the dour farmer. He doesn't say much, but shows his sense of humor over his dead relative's hairstyle and sympathy towards Christina for having a git like Ray as her father.

Bill Nighy as Raymond Robertson is excellent. Arrogant, ruthlessly competitive, nothing is as important as victory, including his daughter. Prior to the start of competition, he simply cannot resist the temptation to visit Phil's shop and gloat over the "fall from grace" of his former rival.

The meeting sparks a heated confrontation between Brian, who witnessed the exchange, and his father. Angry at Phil's handling of the situation and his refusal to enter and show Ray up, Brian defies Phil and informs Shelley he will cut for her in the championship. Although pleased, Shelley knows they still really don't stand a chance in the final part, "The Total Look", without Phil. Although his legendary signature event, Phil adamantly wants no part of it.

That's enough synopsis to be going on with, I think. Watch especially the subplots. Mayor Tony's hilarious transformation from pompous small town official into glittering event presenter. The rally of the townsfolk behind their local team. Brian's funeral fiasco. Christina's Technicolor sheep. The amazing Daisy in "Evening Hair". Sandra and Phil in a bathtub on a hill.

Rachel Griffiths performance as Shelley's lesbian lover Sandra is rich with detailed emotion. Her unresolved conflict with Phil, her insecurity at being "only the f*cking girlfriend", her reaction to the awful reality that the person she loves beyond reason is truly dying. And, gloriously, her radiant "Total Look", which has to be seen to be appreciated.

Well. A little more in depth than I had planned, but that's the overall feeling you get from Blow Dry. More than expected. More than planned. It works on so many levels. The lighthearted silliness of the British Hairdressing Competition, of all things. The reunion of two childhood friends, Brian and Christina, who rediscover each other as attractive adults of the opposite sex. The study of a man who must come to terms with the lesbian lifestyle of his wife, whom, deep inside, he still loves. And the moving portrait, throughout it all, of a dying woman's last attempt to recapture former glory and engineer the reconciliation of all those whom she most loves.

Buy this film. Treasure it. And, when somebody asks you how you felt after you've watched it, you can honestly turn to them and say: "Never better, love, never better".
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7/10
Make sure your hairdresser hasn't seen this film before you make your appointment!
irenemacmillan2 April 2001
A welcome break from the usual gratuitous violence of the average modern film, this is a colourful fantasy with some excellent performances from British stalwarts. The wonderful Alan Rickman plays Phil, the deserted and disappointed husband of Shelley, played poignantly by Natasha Richardson. Phil owns a small barber's shop in the Yorkshire town of Keighley, but in the past he has been a champion in UK hairdressing. However, life's traumas have reduced him to giving up any thought of ambitions on the public hairdressing stage. When former rival hairdresser Raymond, (Bill Nighy) arrives in Phil's home town for the national hairdressing championships the scene is set for a dramatic confrontation and by the end of the competition many people's lives have altered. Warren Clarke gives a bravura performance as the town's mayor, who gradually metamorphoses from a boring local official to an ever more ebullient show host. The requisite romance is provided with a touch of the Romeo-and-Juliets. This will probably be considered a `woman's film' but every hairdresser in Britain of either sex will want to see it. Overall, although the progression of the plot is fairly predictable, if you can leave your critical faculties at home for the evening it could be an enjoyable fairy story.
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10/10
a story and a social document
mel-pullen8 March 2005
I thought this film was wonderful, a slushy feel good film with classic Shakespearian sub-plots. What is most poignant is that it depicts a town that is disappearing in England. Films like this are social documents. If people don't act like this, then this is how we would like to have historians of the future remember us.

It's nice to have films about people and places that are not normally considered glamorous.

It's funny, thoughtful and a gentle story. No violence, no car chases, no sex. A bit of swearing, but that's part of normal language nowadays.

I loved the compère moving from his mayoral robes to night club glitter jacket through the competition. I loved the young ones falling in love. I loved the closure on the separation.

I'm sure some cinematographer could have done more with the visuals of the hair cutting but this was a narrative film. It had a story, and I will add it to my collection of British movies.
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8/10
A forgotten gem of a movie
hullmaninlondon15 April 2021
20 years old but still a sweet British comedy, with heart and emotion.
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7/10
the ladies steal the show
gael-lancelot7 March 2005
So it's a comedy about hairdressing. In truth, the hairdressing provides little more than colour commentary (pun intended), because it's the relationships that take first stage, and they take it really well. Alan Rickman is good, sincere and has depth, Josh Hartnett has an okay delivery ruined by his trying-too-hard faux Yorkshire accent, and Bill Nighy is Bill Nighy, you'll always get a few laughs from him, but the real stars are Rachel Griffiths and Natasha Richardson. Griffiths, in particular, is splendid, going from funny to poignantly hurt to deep, deep love without skipping a beat. Richardson also makes a strong impression, and you can feel the pain in her as the film goes. Oh well... It's a fun film, but it's also a good film.
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7/10
Just because something's fixed, doesn't mean it can't be broken.
lastliberal31 January 2010
The British hairdressing championships are coming to Keighley and it just happens to be the town where Phil (Alan Rickman) lives.

He used to be the champion until he wife Shelley (Natasha Richardson) left him for Sandra (Rachel Griffiths).

Oh, My! Now, he is just a barber (gasp!) and wants nothing to do with Shelly or the championships. Problem is, there is no one else in town that can represent it.

A family reunites and we get to see some of the finest British actors.

I just hope my hairdresser doesn't see this and get weird ideas. I don't want to come out with green spikes!
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6/10
Hair-dos and don'ts
=G=30 April 2002
"Blow Dry" could have been about the baddest gunslingers converging on a quiet little western town for a showdown to determine once and for all who is the fastest gun in the West. Among the players would be the retired gunslinger (the hero) who doesn't pack his sixgun anymore; an evil gunslinger (the villain) who everyone knows is a back-shooter; a beautiful woman who once loved (and still does) the hero; and some hapless townsfolk who are caught up in the whole shebang including a young couple who will eventually fall in love; etc. Well, substitute scissors for sixshooters, move the whole thing to England, and you've kinda-sorta got "Blow Dry", a fun little underachieving mix of comedy and drama with a solid cast and enough subplots to keep the viewer entertained in spite of the lack of overall success. Worth a look, especially for those who enjoyed "The Big Tease".
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5/10
Amiable light comedy
Chris_Docker8 April 2001
Making an emotionally satisfying movie and climax out of a hairdressing competition is no mean challenge, but considering how such a plot seems doomed to mediocrity the film manages to be entertaining enough as light background drivel of the mildly humorous sort.
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7/10
More drama then comedy
vamp8810 September 2003
Warning: Spoilers
If your expecting a laugh out loud comedy forget it, but if you want a good film with a great cast, you won't be disappointed. The acting and casting is wonderful, and the story is quirky, fun, and also sweet, sad, and serious. Focusing on love, forgiveness and family without ever getting too heavy handed. How could it when the setting is a competition between top hair stylists. I don't want to include spoilers as I probably enjoyed it more by getting something I didn't expect. It is quirky and has some laughs but the drama between the people is what this movie is really about.
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A Good But Unusual Movie.
movies2u2 December 2001
Blow Dry was nothing of what I expected, but it was an okay film. Natasha Richardson, Josh Hartnett, and Rachael Leigh Cook were great in the film and were believeable. Like I said, it was a different movie, but it was rather good. I give Blow Dry an 8 out of 10. :)
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Ahwwww bless
Paul_Rudd_has_a_sweet_ass31 January 2004
Not a bad film at all. I watched it when there was nothing else on, drooling at the prospect of Mr Hartnett and not expecting much else. I was pleasantly surprised by the great storyline and lovable characters. The star was without a doubt Alan Rickman. He just rocks so very, very much. A lot of people have of course been commenting on Mr Hartnett's attempt at a Yorkshire accent. Anyone British like me and no doubt most of everyone else will also be wondering what country he's pretending to be from when he says the majority of his lines. It seems the writers gave him lines as short as possible to avoid him buggering up completely. Even so the film is great and Josh, despite looking strained does a fairly good job. Bless 'im.
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Split Ends
NJMoon7 October 2001
BLOW DRY is a film with a split personality that ends satisfying neither. Part sentimental relationship comedy and part scissors satire, the film's cast somehow manages to rise above the unkindest cut as somewhat stylish. Natasha Richardson defends the Redgrave dynasty nicely (though we know she no Yorkshire lass, she). Alan Rickman is a bit under-utilized. Yank Josh Hartnett does nicely with the accent but a Brit boy could've done as well. Rachel Griffiths adds her usual quirky presense. Stage thesp Bill Nighy is oddly over-the-top as the evil stylist out for the title. But the rift between styles gives film a coiff that's none too flattering overall.
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9/10
Unexpectedly funny
opo-8692111 June 2021
All the main characters are good. Warren Clarke stole the show for me.

Fresh and quirky, well worth a go.
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7/10
"Oh, aye?"
sarastro719 June 2004
I was quickly checking the TV program and noticed that a movie with Alan Rickman and Natasha Richardson had just started. So I tuned in. I was totally unprepared for what I got. A low-key comedy about... hair dressing? With a lesbian or bisexual subplot? I was bemused. Puzzled. Fascinated. This is one of the weirdest movies I've ever seen. It had a lot of entertainment value, but in an intelligent, highly eccentric way. It wasn't laugh-out-loud funny, but weird funny. It was intriguing. I hesitate to say it was really good, but it certainly was an experience!

The actors were all very watchable (even poor speech-impaired Josh, most of whose lines were fragmented half-sentences - the only right choice!). Bill Nighy is always a pleasure, so too for Rickman and Richardson. Rachael Leigh Cook was a beauty to behold (though I still find it difficult to dissociate her from that awful, awful piece of teen idiocy that was She's All That). Rachel Griffiths was also good. Heidi Klum was just the right type for her role (wow, didya see that fan 'do she sported towards the end?!). And the other minor characters - like the Kilburn Kutters and the Style Warriors, and the whole thing with the dead body getting a Sid Vicious hair-do - were really some of the best elements in the movie.

Importantly, this movie had a good and satisfying end. The "Total Look" outfits were *incredible*! Winter, Nefertita and... just Sandra. Fantastic, jaw-dropping efforts - which in the real world would surely be *absolutely impossible* to accomplish in 45 minutes. But by God they were stupendous-looking. (And that's coming from a long-haired guy who hasn't been to a hair-dresser since 1988 and really couldn't care less about the vacuous world of hair-dressing. Someone mentioned that the movie was about vanity - well, the setting wasn't chosen by accident, then!)

As a whole, the movie must be said to be a fine effort. I rate it 7 out of 10, which is my "good, decent movie" rating.
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10/10
Nobody else enjoyed this?
FesterW12 March 2001
Despite what else you may read in the comments section of Blow Dry... know that at least one person liked it. I enjoyed it and think it is definitely worth taking a look at. Josh Hartnett was surprisingly good, and convincing with a British accent. The progression of the Lord Mayor's character from the beginning up through the duration of closing credits was great too. If you are picky about your movies, then you may not enjoy this, but if you're willing to give a film its fair chance, without pre-determining what you'll think of it by reading other's views, you might just like it.
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7/10
Peculiarity...Actors
jpschapira20 March 2006
Many times you watch a movie for several reasons or because you want to find several things, and during the movie you find other things that you didn't expect but become extremely pleasant. I decided to watch "Blow Dry" because of Rachael Leigh Cook, not even because of Josh Hartnett. If I had known that I'd find Alan Rickman, Bill Nighy and some of their fellows, the ride would have been very different. Fortunately; I didn't know.

The events in "Blow Dry" unfold in a very peculiar way. In fact, the film is a peculiar comedy with peculiar characters that go through the most peculiar situation. Surprisingly, they are all human beings at last; there's a buried story between them and they show natural emotions as they speak. Maybe it's Simon Beaufoy's solid screenplay, or the fact that the past explains every action and, unlike typical romantic comedies, characters know each other and don't fall in love within days.

What makes the picture dynamic and enjoyable is that there are not only two main characters, or only one love story. The plot shows the lives of two families encountered (one separated) by one peculiar (yes) activity: hairdressing. The annual British Hairdressing competition takes place in Keighley, a little town. "This competition", declares the mayor Tony (Warren Clarke) "Will change the history of this town".

Raymond Robertson (Bill Nighy), the world champion, assists the competition with his daughter Christine (Rachael Leigh Cook) alongside him. She'll be one of his models, given that the competition consists on different kinds of hair styles done to different people. Robertson is scared for only one man from Keighley who could enter the competition: Phil Allen (Alan Rickman).

Allen cuts hairs in a local barbershop with his son Brian (Josh Hartnett), but has been out of competitions for ten years, since the day his wife Shelley (Natasha Richardson) ran away with his model Sandra (Rachel Griffiths) in a lesbian affair that left him all alone. There are things unsaid here; more than we could ever imagine. The stages of the competition take place and the characters' relationships evolve.

Who wins the tournament, why and under which circumstances becomes less interesting as we see the other part of the film being developed; the part of the emotions. Paddy Breathnach, the director manages all of this perfectly, leaving a lot of room for the comedy and taking advantage of every illuminated moment the script presents.

These illuminations arrive with the cast of gifted actors and the different colors they bring. From the younger, like Rachael Leigh Cook who hasn't been doing much lately but has a great career for her age and a beautiful smile to connect with her talent; and Josh Hartnett, with a well accomplished British accent and experimenting with comedy before his lead in "40 days and 40 nights". To the elder, like the duo created by Richardson and Griffiths, which depends on a lot of accurate chemistry; and Warren Clarke's Tony, who is a revelation as he gains confidence while the days go by in the competition.

But finally, those relaxed and calmed old men (to put it in a way) who have great talents and make anyone laugh, but probably will never be recognized for it. When I saw "Galaxy Quest" I noticed certain uniqueness in Alan Rickman's voice and look; years after: it's still there. The man makes me laugh with no efforts, and so does Bill Nighy, an eternal stubborn and annoying actor who couldn't care less about the roles he plays; so to ridicule them, which makes them perfect.

British comedies are and have been the funniest comedies of the world; it is because of actors like Rickman and Nighy…Believe me.
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7/10
Cute quirky comedy
HotToastyRag14 June 2019
In the land of indie, quirky movies, Blow Dry is pretty good. It has a premise that might not immediately be appealing to all audiences, but the cast is eye-catching and as the story progresses, it has a lot to say.

Alan Rickman and Josh Hartnett are a father-and-son barbershop team, and when the annual hairdressing contest comes to their small English town, they're conflicted about whether or not to enter. Alan's an old pro at competitive hairstyling, but since his ex-wife Natasha Richardson is entering, he doesn't want to. When a rival from his past, Bill Nighy, shows up to enter the contest, Alan just might feel that competitive streak rising. Meanwhile, Josh starts to fall for Bill's daughter, Rachael Leigh Cook.

This is a very cute off-beat comedy with lots of flash and fluff, but with friends, family, and fame at the heart of the story. If you're at all interested in hair, you'll be very entertained by the beautiful designs shown during the practices and the contest itself. Hairdressing really is a work of art, and with twelve hairdressers working on the movie, you can expect the very best. I was initially drawn in by the cast and found a pleasant surprise, so give it a shot and see if you like it!
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5/10
Rachael Leigh Cook and Josh Hartnett are Brits??
SnoopyStyle1 September 2013
The annual British Hairdressing Championship comes to the town of Keighley. Phil (Alan Rickman) and her son Brian (Josh Hartnett) run a barbershop. His ex-wife Shelly (Natasha Richardson) and her lesbian partner Sandra (Rachel Griffiths) run a beauty salon. Defending champion Raymond Robertson (Bill Nighy) dissuades Phil from competing. Brian is taken with Raymond's daughter Christina (Rachael Leigh Cook) and joins Shelly who secretly has terminal cancer.

This is a British satire. Everybody is playing it up as wacky hairdressing. There are some great Brits but Rachael Leigh Cook and Josh Hartnett stick out as sore thumbs. They are obviously trying to get some buzz going with a couple of hot young Americans. The problem is that I just can't get over these two youngsters trying for a British accent. Sadly, it's unnecessarily distracting. Whereas the story itself is amusing at times. I didn't have any big laughs. It's more cute than funny.
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Comedy and Compassion Meet
lawprof17 December 2001
Each of the main characters is well portrayed. Perhaps the director and the writer weren't sure how much of a comedy as opposed to a drama "Blow Dry" was supposed to be. The result is much like life - comedic moments align themselves uncomfortably with serious issues. I haven't been to Yorkshire in decades and I certainly don't know any hair stylists except for the woman who cuts my hair but I could identify with all the characters. Their humanity escapes their locality.
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