Flamboyant entertainer Ian Dury, backed by the Blockheads, takes to the stage, explaining to his audience how, as a child, he contracted polio from a swimming pool and attended a special needs school where he was bullied, particularly by orderly Hargreaves, a fact which shaped his tough and frequently iconoclastic approach to life, culminating in his controversial contribution to the Year of the Disabled. From his early days with Kilburn and the High Roads, playing seedy pubs with no dressing rooms Ian moves onto chart success with the Blockheads, collaborating with musician Chaz Jankel. His private life is complicated as, separated from the tolerant Betty with whom he remains friends but refuses to divorce for many years, he lives with the much younger Denise along with his adored son Baxter, who will himself become a performer. Ian dies in 2000, having packed an enormous amount of living into a comparatively short life.Written by
don @ minifie-1
In the Kilburns' pub gig towards the start of the film (in the early 70s), the drummer is playing Sabian cymbals (a Sabian logo is clearly visible when the audience start throwing toilet rolls). The Sabian cymbal company didn't exist until 1981. See more »
It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog...
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There are photos of the real Ian Dury - including ones of him as a child with his father and of the cover of 'New Boots and Panties - at the end of the film just prior to the credits. See more »
In one scene Olivia Williams (as Dury's wife) throws plates at Andy Serkis(Dury) in a domestic argument - typically of this film it seemed stilted and unreal. That said Andy Serkis is terrific as Dury, as I expected. Naomi Harris is hot and a damned good actress to boot. The style of the film rather gets in the way of a coherent narrative and is ultimately unsatisfying. The Blockhead's music is always worth hearing and I would have liked more band performance on screen as that is what made Dury great. It is to the movie's credit that Ian Dury is seen warts and all, like most rock stars he was a complex and difficult man at the best of times. This film was not quite what I expected it to be and therefore overall I was disappointed in the final result.
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