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The Alan Clarke Collection (1977-1991)

Cast: Gary Oldman, Ray Winstone, Mick Ford, more...
Director: Alan Clarke, Alan Clarke
    see all cast/crew...
Rating: Not Rated,
Studio: Blue Underground
Genre: Documentary, Biographies, Foreign, UK, Drama, British Drama, Crime, Prison
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

Synopses
Director: Alan Clarke (1991)
Directed by Corin Campbell-Hill, this posthumous documentary explores Clarke's brilliant legacy via revealing interviews, rare behind-the-scenes footage and more.

The Firm/Elephant (1988)
The Firm, acclaimed British television director Alan Clarke's last feature film, deals with the football hooliganism that was such a serious problem in England during the 1980s. Gary Oldman stars as Bex, a real estate agent whose true passion is being the "top boy" of the Inter-City Crew, or ICC, from West Ham (based on the real-life Inter-City Firm). As the film opens, Bex is engaged in a football match while his car is being vandalized by rivals from Birmingham, led by Yeti (Mike Leigh regular Philip Davis, who also co-starred in Clarke's Scum). His mates urge Bex to seek violent revenge immediately, but he has other plans. Bex calls a meeting with the two other major "firms" in England and proposes that they band together for a trip to Germany to face off against Dutch hooligans at the European Cup. But his rivals balk because Bex insists on leading the new national firm. It's decided that whichever firm comes out on top in a round robin series of battles will lead them all to Germany. But Yeti continues to target Bex and his crew, and as the violence escalates, there's growing dissension in the ranks. Further complicating matters, Bex's wife, Sue (Lesley Manville, Oldman's one-time wife and another Leigh regular), takes a dim view of his violent "hobby," and their relationship takes another hit when their toddler son gets hold of Bex's beloved Stanley knife. The Firm's airing on the BBC created some controversy. Clarke went on to direct the influential experimental film Elephant before he died of cancer in 1990. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

Made in Britain (1981)
Director Alan Clarke's influential television drama Made in Britain marked the screen debut of actor Tim Roth. Roth plays Trevor, a skinhead with a swastika tattoo on his forehead who lashes out verbally and sometimes physically at everything that surrounds him. Cinematographer Chris Menges (who would go on to win Oscars for his work on The Killing Fields and The Mission), gets his camera right in Roth's snarling face, as the film tracks Trevor's progress through the British justice system. In the courtroom, charged with attacking a Pakistani man and vandalizing his store, Trevor displays absolutely no remorse as he matter-of-factly admits that he knew the man would have to be hospitalized for his injuries. Trevor's social worker, Harry (Eric Richard), recognizes Trevor's intelligence, but he's running out of ways to convince Trevor to straighten out his life. Harry takes him to a juvenile detention center for "assessment," after which he'll be sentenced. Trevor immediately dismisses Peter (Bill Stewart), the put-upon supervisor of the center, as a "wanker." He meets his black roommate, Errol (Terry Richards), whom he quickly convinces to come out with him on a car-stealing, glue-sniffing, job-center-vandalizing day trip. Brazenly returning to the detention center in a stolen car, Trevor eventually provokes Peter into locking him in a classroom, so a police superintendent (Geoffrey Hutchings) can harangue him about the hopeless path his life is taking. Trevor refuses to accept the center's (and society's) standards for "good behavior," raging that they all just want everyone to follow the rules and keep their mouths shut. The script was written by David Leland (Wish You Were Here) and the songs on the soundtrack are by the anarchist hardcore band the Exploited. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

Scum (BBC Version) (1977)
Scum refers to the label slapped upon reform-school inmate Ray Winstone. Such reformatories are called "borstals" by the British. When he isn't being beaten up by the other boys, Ray is being beaten down by The System. He rebels against this treatment and "wins" by becoming more vicious than any of his oppressors. Scum was originally filmed for British television, but rejected because of the bleakness of its outlook. The film went straight into theatres, where audiences had to strain to comprehend the "punk" jargon and thick provincial accents. Despite this, the film was lavishly praised by critics and moviegoers alike. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Scum (Theatrical Version) (1979)
Scum refers to the label slapped upon reform-school inmate Ray Winstone. Such reformatories are called "borstals" by the British. When he isn't being beaten up by the other boys, Ray is being beaten down by The System. He rebels against this treatment and "wins" by becoming more vicious than any of his oppressors. Scum was originally filmed for British television, but rejected because of the bleakness of its outlook. The film went straight into theatres, where audiences had to strain to comprehend the "punk" jargon and thick provincial accents. Despite this, the film was lavishly praised by critics and moviegoers alike. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Ratings

Director: Alan Clarke (1991)
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6.43 (7 votes)
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The Firm/Elephant (1988)
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7.80 (15 votes)
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Made in Britain (1981)
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8.00 (15 votes)
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Scum (BBC Version) (1977)
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6.25 (4 votes)
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Scum (Theatrical Version) (1979)
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8.20 (15 votes)
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GreenCine Member Reviews

Who's your daddy by cammelltoe June 19, 2005 - 12:48 AM PDT
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1 out of 1 members found this review helpful
cineastes worldwide were robbed of treasure when Alan Clarke shoved off early in his career. His films are defined by an uncluttered purity of purpose, a divinely elegant shooting style and brutally intense acting. Scum is a great, gritty example of his aesthetic. A young Ray Winstone arrives at a violent and corrupt institution and survives by becoming as violent and corrupt as everything around him. while this description (and the one provided above)reek of british "kitchen sink" miserablism (much of Mike Leigh or Ken Loach's minor work) or american "anti-authoritian" liberalism ( i.e.the shawshank redemption)Scum transcends either of these potential traps by avoiding easy cariactures and not letting his characters off the hook. it might make you cry, but it will definetly piss you off. bonus: a lively commentary track with ray winstone is included with the extras. The guy interviewing him is a bit of a ponce but the man himself makes up for it. highly recommended!

Almost the Dogs Bollocks by markh January 24, 2005 - 1:21 PM PST
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1 out of 2 members found this review helpful
Just want to add that this movie was originally made for educational TV and yes it did cause quite a stir at the time. say what you like about the motivation of Trevor and his racism it is the alienation and pointlessness of modern society that comes out the baddie in this film. You sympathise and guiltily root for the anti-hero, after all he is a glue sniffing "paki-basher" and not the more friendly American anti hero we are used to seeing. Ultimatly the impact is diminished (somewhat) by the made for TV values, relative shortness and character development, however in the juvie' delinquent movie hall of fame this has a place of honor along side American History X and possibly Clockwork Orange. Overall a powerful film that would never see the light of day in todays christian right wing dominated media watch it as a "historical document" it says more about the UK than any number of lock,stock/snatch lad movies could ever say. Oh for those who are unfamiliar the word wanker refers to onanism and should be used to describe a person that would seem inept, pointless, useless, anoying, pratish, a tosser i.e. "that Bush geezer he's an utter wanker".

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