Look Back in Anger DVD

Judi Dench, 1989

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Film Details

Directed by Judi Dench

Produced in 1989

Main Language - English

Countries & Regions - British Film

MovieMail's Review

Judi Dench's sole directorial outing sees Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson star in the Renaissance Theatre Company's highly acclaimed TV presentation of John Osborne's landmark play.

It’s hard to credit now that John Osborne’s play was vilified by most critics on its release, so confirmed is its classic status. It sparked off a succession of “Angry Young Man” dramas, including Saturday Night and Sunday Morning and The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner. This 1989 adaptation marks Judi Dench’s sole directorial effort, and stars Kenneth Branagh as Jimmy, the bitter anti-hero, and Emma Thompson as his weary wife, just before both went on to hugely successful film careers. Dissecting the lot of the working-class male in 1950s Britain, Branagh excels in the role – a burning and bitter mass of unfulfilled potential, he captures the character’s essence more effectively than Richard Burton’s interpretation in the flawed 1959 film.

Some of this adaptation’s strongest scenes are those between Thompson and Siobhan Redmond as her friend/love rival, with Dench emphasising the feminine relationship among the male grandstanding – there is a streak of misogyny in the play that Dench tempers with her sensitive focus. Her film is a claustrophobic and moving portrayal of lives at the end of their tether.

on 13th December 2011
Author of 94 reviews

Look Back in Anger Look Back in Anger

Film Description

In her only directorial outing, Judi Dench directs Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson in the Renaissance Theatre Company's highly acclaimed TV presentation of John Osborne's landmark play Look Back In Anger – a work which brought in the generation of 'Angry Young Men'.

A story of disparate characters locked into the raw misery of a self-destructive marriage driven towards crisis point, the play features astonishing performances from both of its celebrated leads. Branagh's turn as the mercurial central character, a disappointed working-class graduate railing furiously against bourgeois respectability, was hailed by Osborne as 'the best Jimmy Porter ever', while Thompson brings enormous sympathy and depth to the role of the long-suffering Alison – the seeming embodiment of all that Jimmy abhors.

DVD Details

Certificate: 12

Publisher: Network

Length: 114 mins

Format: DVD Colour

Region: 2

Released: 30th January 2012

Cat No: 7953629

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