This Is England
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British filmmaker Shane Meadows looks back at his own youth in this semi-autobiographical comedy drama that examines skinhead culture in the U.K. It's the summer of 1983, and Shaun (Thomas Turgoose) is a 12-year-old boy edging into adolescence without a father, his dad having lost his life the year before in the Falkland Islands War. A gang of skinheads -- tough guys in their teens and early twenties who shave their heads, wear Ben Sherman polo shirts, and Dr. Martens boots, and listen to ska music -- walk the streets in Shaun's neighborhood, and one day they start picking on him.… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"How sad and predictable is the fate of those who counsel violence as a means to an end. And yet how poignant it all seems when viewed through Shane Meadows' thoughtful lens."
‑ Peter Howell, Toronto Star
"It may be the best work to date from the talented 34-year-old writer-director of Twenty Four Seven (1997)."
‑ John Hartl, Seattle Times
"It is the war within him--and by extension, within the minds of many embittered, working class young men left behind in Thatcher's England--that Meadows's film most strikingly portrays."
‑ Leo Goldsmith, Reverse Shot
"Riveting."
‑ Jason Ferguson, Orlando Weekly
"This Is England grabs you by the scruff of the neck and yanks you into the Thatcher 1980s with brute force."
‑ Michele Kenner, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"You wouldn't think a film about a group of British skinheads during the early 1980s could be a sweet, nostalgic coming-of-age period piece, but that's the surprise of the authentic, fresh and utterly relevant This Is England."
‑ Jennie Punter, Globe and Mail
"A drama that's so potent and persuasive yet also natural and intimate that it almost has the heft of a documentary."
‑ Bruce Westbrook, Houston Chronicle
"Steeped in the raw mix of ska and punk sound as expression of the youth alienation and misguided rage of those tumultuous times, an alarming voice of the surging army of jobless youth back then dubbed 'no hopers.'"
‑ Prairie Miller, NewsBlaze
"Meadows obviously knows the working class neighborhoods that he depicts. There's a grit and honesty to his film as he chronicles the mundane details of these kids' lives."
‑ Beth Accomando, KPBS.org
"A post-punk gem of a drama that seems bent on being both funny and deadly serious."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Its tough but moving neo-realist approach make it one of the better British films of recent times."
‑ Richard James Havis, Hollywood Reporter
"A movie about the allure of groupthink and how the warm comfort of being surrounded by peers wilts all sense of balance."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"Stephen Graham delivers a bravura performance as the brooding, mesmerizing Combo, clearly channeling Russell Crowe in Romper Stomper."
‑ Marlow Stern, Manhattan Movie Magazine
"An intelligent, spare, mean-streets sort of story, This Is England features superb performances..."
‑ Liz Braun, Jam! Movies
"This is not the England that makes you want to hop on over for a visit, but the movie is worthy of a quick look."
‑ Cherryl Dawson and Leigh Ann Palone, TheMovieChicks.com
More reviews for This Is England on Rotten Tomatoes

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