Newest Review: ... getting wind of a womens only strip show at a local working mens club Gaz decides this is his next get rich quick scheme, create a new chi... more
Watch It !!!
The Full Monty (DVD)
Member Name: kirstieksf
The Full Monty (DVD)
Date: 03/12/00, updated on 03/12/00 (115 review reads)
Disadvantages: Not long enough!
Ever since ‘The Full Monty’ was released in 1997, I have heard rave reviews about it from my friends and colleagues, but I didn’t think it was the sort of film I would watch, so I had never seen it, although a couple of my favourite actors star in it. But then on Wednesday night I had nothing better to do, and a friend had been saying how good the film was at work that evening, so (against my better judgement) I decided to watch it.
I was expecting a tacky film with a fair bit of naked flesh, and lots of swearing and bad language. What I actually watched was an intelligent comedy about six Sheffield steelworkers who when made redundant during the recession, and with very little employment going, are forced to find a way of earning some money.
The main character is Gary ‘Gaz’ Schofield, played by Robert Carlyle. Gaz is a thirty-something lovable rogue, who is £700 in arrears with his child maintenance, and who desperately needs to make some money to clear the debt, so that his ex-wife will let him continue to see their ten year old son, Nathan.
Gaz comes up with the bright idea of forming a group of male strippers, after watching a thousand women queuing to see the Chippendales at the local Working Men’s Club. He works out that at £10 entry, the Chippendales would make £10,000 just from that one show, and reckons he’s found the answer to his prayers.
The first person to be recruited is Gaz’s best mate and former colleague, Dave Osbourne, played by Mark Addy. Dave is overweight, lacking in self-confidence, and really not sure about the whole idea, but gradually gets talked into it by Gaz. As we discover later in the film, Dave has another problem which affects his confidence as well.
When Dave and Gaz come across a broken down car, which another of their former workmates is sitting in, Dave tries to fix it, before realising that the guy was actually trying to gas himself. W
e soon discover his name is Lomper (no, we never find out what it really is) and thus the troupe increases to four.
In due course, and with the help of a garden gnome or two, the guys persuade their former foreman, Gerald Cooper, played by Tom Wilkinson, to teach them how to dance, and join them. Gerald is married to a shopping obsessed wife, who has plans for a skiing holiday, and he hasn’t had the nerve to tell her he lost his job six months before, so pretends to go to work each day as normal.
When the guys hold auditions for two more members of their troupe, they gain Barrington ‘Horse’ Mitchell, who realises later that maybe, just maybe ‘Horse’ was a poor choice of nickname, and who is around 50 but still knows a thing or two about dance moves. Horse is played by Paul Barber, who will be familiar to many as Denzil from ‘Only Fools and Horses’.
The last member is Guy, played by Hugo Speer, who can’t dance, or sing, and who already has a job, but is something of an exhibitionist, and looks forward to taking his clothes off in public. So now there are six.
At this point a mention should go to William Snape, who shines as Gaz’s son Nathan. The father/son relationship is well illustrated throughout the film, with realistic issues and problems being raised. The scene in the bank where Nathan wants to withdraw his savings to lend Gaz is touching in it’s simplicity, and the expression on Gaz’s face when he realises that Nathan believes in his ability to make the scheme profitable is one which almost brought me to tears….(OK, it *did* !)
‘The Full Monty’ is a comedy, but it explores important social issues, such as the effect of mass redundancies in a largely industrial area, and the consequences of men (still traditionally the breadwinner in most British homes) not being able to provide for their families. Although there are many hilarious
scenes, there are equally as many scenes to touch even the hardest heart, but director Peter Cattaneo avoids plunging too deeply into sentimentality by cleverly counteracting the sentimental scenes with comedy.
I was stunned by the quality of ‘The Full Monty’. It’s not tacky, in fact the final nude scene is incredibly tastefully done, and the strong language is completely in context for a Northern industrial community. The main cast members are all excellent, but Mark Addy as Dave gives a really fantastic performance, and was definitely my favourite character. Having watched it a few days ago I plan to see it again tomorrow, and I’m not at all surprised by the success the film enjoyed worldwide on it’s release. I’m only sorry it took me three years to see it! Definitely recommended – I loved it!