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Skinhead Culture

  • Feb 25, 2008
  • by
"This is England"

Skinhead Culture

Amos Lassen

Skinhead culture mystifies the western world because it is one of the few remaining subcultures in the West and it also has connections to the Nazis. During the summer of 1983 there were "mods", "new romantics" and "skinheads" on England. Twelve year old Shaun is left to wander aimlessly alone and lost at the beginning of his school holidays. By chance he meets Woody and his friends, a friendly bunch of skinheads. He is welcomed among them and his life during that holiday got much, much better. Things change when Combo arrives on the scene. He is bitter, dangerous, militant and psychotic. This is the England that was as seen through the eyes of a twelve year old as he deals with the adult issues of xenophobia, racism, mass unemployment, and the results of the Falkland War. This is a look at Shane Meadows who wrote this film. It is based on his own experiences as he faced the complexities of masculinity and violence and race. It is handles with wonderful sensitivity and captures the mood and the time.
The cinematography reflects the bleakness of English life of the 80's in its grittiness. The visual style is raw and adds to the movie in every aspect.
The cast and the script are brilliant and the archival footage takes the viewer on a trip of what was.

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More This is England reviews
review by . March 30, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Pros: Story, acting (particularly Thomas Turgoose      Cons: Some of the relationships strain credibility      The Bottom Line: The film's themes are not pleasant ones, but the acting and music alone are enough to warrant consideration.      Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie''s plot. I think we prefer to think that thugs or otherwise violent sub-cultures as “totally other.” This Is …
review by . October 19, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
"This is England" is a riveting story about a lonely young boy who lost his father in the Falkland War and who turns to a group of young "skinheads" for kicks and friendship. All of the kids are tough troublemakers who get the kid, Shaun, involved in activities that no twelve year old should be involved in, but they are depicted as mainly a good group of kids, who don't have much besides each other and so really care about each other. They are into music and drinking and the occasional "spliff" …
About the reviewer
Amos Lassen ()
Ranked #84
I am an academic who reivews movies and books of interest to the GLBT and Jewish communities.   I came to Arkansas after having been relocated here due to Hurricane Katrina. I was living in … more
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About this movie


School is out for summer, and 12 year old Shaun is about to find a dangerous new group of friends. Having lost his father in the Falklands War, life has been lonely in this grim coastal town in northern England. When Shaun meets the local skinheads, however, their companionship and even their violence appeal to Shaun’s hurt and rage. In Combo, an older volatile skinhead, Shaun finds a big brother and under Combo’s leadership, the gang and young Shawn will arrive at an irreversible act of violence.
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DVD Release Date: November 13, 2007
Runtime: 101 minutes
Studio: Ifc

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