Mike Leigh

Grown-Ups

A masterclass in the blending of farce with pathos.

Image from Grown-Ups

Playhouse, BBC 1980
Dir Mike Leigh
With Brenda Blethyn, Philip Davis, Lindsay Duncan, Sam Kelly, Lesley Manville, Janine Duvitski
93min

Brenda Blethyn is glorious as Gloria, a demanding busybody in a tight comedy of suburban chaos, switching between a private semi and a council house. Relish the farcical explosion, nailing all six characters in a human chain after Gloria tries to force an entry. Mike Leigh claimed he had only achieved such dense, dramatic writing before in the theatre.

+ The Short and Curlies
Ch4 1987. Dir Mike Leigh. With Alison Steadman, Sylvestra Le Touzel, David Thewlis, Wendy Nottingham. 18min
A delightful short about a chatty hairdresser and her withdrawn daughter.

The screening on Saturday 30 October will feature a Q&A with Mike Leigh.