Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Pride was named best British film at the BIFA Awards
"A feelgood parable of human nature's ability to extract the positive from a negative."

Years before Stephen Fry and Rupert Everett came out, before limp-wristed chat show hosts became the norm, gays suffered homophobic prejudice, inciting verbal abuse and full frontal attacks. Even in San Francisco, the principality of poofdom in the US, rage erupted in the Castro district. Milk was more educational than merely a vehicle for Sean Penn's Oscar ambitions and strikes a chord with Pride, another union inspired propaganda piece, based on real events.

A group of homosexual friends who hang out at an alternative bookshop in London feel an affinity with the striking miners in 1984 and want to do something to help, or rather Mark (Ben Schnetzer), the youngest and most politically active, does and he has the energy as well as the leadership qualities to make things happen.

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They fund raise in the streets of Clapham and then drive to a remote village in Wales to offer money and sympathy. Naturally it's a chalk and cheese horror show once the queers and lesbos arrive. They could be from Mars, only worse, because their sexual orientation is considered an emotional deformity of gut wrenching proportions.

The film is about how the two sides learn to understand each other and so evolves into a feelgood parable of human nature's ability to extract the positive from a negative. The gays are not overtly camp although Dominic West's disco solo at the dance is hilarious. They appear almost too nice. Where are the screaming queens, the bitch vixes and the promiscuous predators?

Laced with good intentions and bolstered by an Arthur Scargill fan base, Pride's power comes from the performances which, without exception, are above and beyond the call of duty.

Reviewed on: 31 Jul 2014
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A group of LGBT rights activists is determined to help the residents of a Welsh village who are struggling because of the 1984 miners' strikes.
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Director: Matthew Warchus

Writer: Stephen Beresford

Starring: Bill Nighy, Dominic West, Imelda Staunton, Ben Schnetzer, George Mackay, Andrew Scott, Paddy Considine, Faye Marsay, Joseph Gilgun

Year: 2014

Runtime: 120 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: UK


Cannes 2014
Flare 2015

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