Brassed Off! (1997)

BRASSED OFF!, the only musical mining drama that's likely to grace 
our shores this (or any other) year, has, to its credit, a strong 
cast (headlined by Pete Postlethwaite, Tara Fitzgerald, and Ewan 
McGregor), several compelling characters, and plenty of fine brass 
music.  (Music and dialogue rendered on a recording so crisp that I 
actually had trouble paying attention to the movie!  Since when did 
small films start sounding so big?)  What sends this British import 
right down the crapper is a weighty mix of dour drama-- striking 
miners, families strapped for cash, clowns trying to commit sui-
cide, etc.-- and heavy-handed politics.  Ugh.  By the end, when the 
colliery band makes it to their final competition, there's nothing 
left to celebrate, except, perhaps, the impending restoration of 
blood flow to a certain bum deal.  An interesting movie, I suppose, 
but way too bitter to be bittersweet.  (Rated "R"/107 min.)

Grade: C+

Copyright 1997 Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros

Originally posted to triangle.movies in Movie Hell: June 23, 1997

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