Pride

Touching drama… not each other!

I was always terrible at history when I was at school; probably because I tended to switch off especially when it came to the industrial revolution and onwards.

With that in mind it’s probably to no-ones surprise that me providing historical reference to Pride is about as useful trying to play Xbox games on a PlayStation. To give myself some credit the only things I was doing around the time of the miners strikes was crying as I soiled myself or if my parents were lucky simply learning to crawl.

1984 in the UK saw the birth of little ol’ me but it’s also when Margret Thatcher announced the widespread closure of mines and coal pits affecting some of poorest members of society. This is where Pride starts off. A politically active member of the gay community, Mark Ashton (Ben Schnetzer), draws comparison with the downtrodden miners and his own LGBT society. Determined to help in whichever way he can he makes it his mission to collect as much money as possible to support the miners.

Mark and his band of ‘perverts’ raise money to support those in the pits and eventually goes to a small Welsh village to give support face to face.

Obviously the first thing they are faced with is extreme prejudice. They walk in a room, everyone else walks out. Little by little they gain not only the acceptance but also the respect of the mining community and it would be really easy to boil the film down to a story of overcoming prejudice but that would be missing the bigger picture.

The film is about relationships and its something that everyone can relate to. Cast your mind back to when your best friend helped you out of a tight spot, it gave you a warm and fuzzy feeling right? Like all of life’s little problems are no longer insurmountable.

As the film progresses we are frequently and pleasantly reminded of this feeling whether it be from the developing acceptance of the gay community by the miners, inter personal relationships within the LGSM group or re-uniting family relations. All of this is really carefully and honestly portrayed by the whole cast each of whom gave superb performances especially Gethin played by Andrew Scott.

The film is hugely accessible, partly through periodic injections of British humour, even when it still deals with its contentious subject matter because there is rarely any gay/lesbian romance scenes to cause any feeling of discomfort.

One thing that some might hold against the film is that it doesn’t particularly feel like a movie it feels like a TV film; hardly surprising as it is a BBC film but hey you are paying about a tenner to see a movie right?

I’m not well versed on the lesbian or gay scene – I think I sat next to one on the bus once? – but it certainly feels like an opportune moment for the film to release as there appears to be more of a push for the social acceptance in recent months of the LGBT community. Hell even Sony have gotten involved in the action by making a rainbow coloured version of the aforementioned PlayStation and they even called it the GayStation with all proceeds going to LGBT charities. Good times.

In all I highly recommend you watch this film as it is a celebration of equality, respect and friendship; attributes that sometimes feel all too distant in today’s society, queerly enough.

Go See

  • Great performances all round
  • British wit
  • Honest and heartfelt messages superbly delivered

Avoid

  • A little too long
  • Felt like a TV movie

Overall

4-5-stars

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