Director: Mike Leigh Run Time: 108 min. Format: DCP Release Year: 1989
Starring: Edna Doré, Heather Tobias, Lesley Manville, Phil Davis, Philip Jackson, Ruth Sheen
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A darkly comic portrait of late Thatcher-era London, HIGH HOPES examines the different lives of a pair of siblings: Cyril (Davis), a caustic motorcycle courier who takes pride in his working-class roots, and Valerie (Tobias), a high-strung aspirant to upper-middle class materialism. Applying his cutting yet sympathetic observations of human behavior to a transitional cultural climate, Leigh contrasts the divergent values—and directions—of England’s social classes.
Double Feature with LIFE IS SWEET
“High Hopes is an alive and challenging film, one that throws our own assumptions and evasions back at us. Leigh sees his characters and their lifestyles so vividly, so mercilessly and with such a sharp satirical edge, that the movie achieves a neat trick: We start by laughing at the others, and end by feeling uncomfortable about ourselves.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times