This Is England 2006 UNRATED
1h 41min | Crime, Drama | 27 April 2007 (UK)
A young boy becomes friends with a gang of skinheads. Friends soon become like family, and relationships will be pushed to the very limit.
The skinhead culture fascinates many directors and it’s understandable. It’s one of the few remaining subcultures in the West, much because of the Nazi connections.
But the skins in this movie aren’t political and no racists to start with. One of the gang members is even black. They live in a happy community in the early 80s, having fun and being together in a totally grey unfriendly working class environment. It’s very hopeful and the 12-year-old finds himself accepted for the first time in his life. His longing for the dead father of the Falklands war is somewhat replaced.
But darkness arrives with the skin veteran who comes back from jail. And there are conflicts between the racist fraction and the others. But whatever this is, it’s not black and white. The characters are much more complicated.
Much has been said about young Thomas Turgoose as the 12-year-old. He’s very good but the great portrait is by Stephen Graham as the old/new gang leader. Absolutely brilliant work.
Director: Shane Meadows
Writer: Shane Meadows
Stars: Thomas Turgoose, Stephen Graham, Jo Hartley