This is what happens when your car breaks down on a Sunday morning and you have nothing else to do…
They beat him. They deprived him. they ridiculed him. They broke his heart but they couldn't break his spirit.
A young, English working-class boy spends his free time caring for and training his pet falcon.
Only his second feature, Kes remains one of Ken Loach's distinctive, largely because the working style we now associate with him was first set here.
Gone are some of the more mannered techniques he had used in his BBC plays in favour of a more realistic, observer style that owes its roots in the Czech cinema he was so fond of.
Also gone is the uneasy compromise he made on his first feature, Poor Cow, to include a star name in his work in the shape of Terence Stamp. From hereon in, Ken Loach films would cast non actors and amateurs, real people in lead roles and none were perhaps so distinctive as the young schoolboy David Bradley who bagged…
3rd viewing. still absolutely slaughters me. This viewing was a far greater revelation for me though. Every single one of Loach's luminous frames clicked this time and quietly dovetailed into what I am now quite sure is the greatest Coming-of-Age drama out there.
David Bradley's face maps the plight of every child who has been denied the privileged, Disney Channel idea of childhood. His is the type of limited, oppressive upbringing that has produced the miserable bunch of grown ups populating this film. The phys ed teacher who dreamed of playing Premier League football and now has to live out the dregs of his dream playing against primary school boys. The Headmaster, who led the pack of troublemakers in his…
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Ken Loach's second - and still best - feature is this stunning translation of the Barry Hines novel, with David Bradley perfect as malnourished Barnsley school leaver Billy Casper, who escapes the drudgery of pit village life through his friendship with a savage, graceful hawk.
The hawk represents hope, freedom, aspiration and poetry - none of which are allowed to survive in a Britain that kicks the shit out of its working classes, breeding only vicious alpha males peddling mundane brutality and sadistic teachers blinkeredly hurling their young charges onto the scrapheap.
Though it's lit by frequent flashes of wry humour, glorious music and cinematography, and moments of transcendent escape redolent with rare beauty, it's ultimately a chilling depiction of utter hopelessness; one that packs a devastating emotional wallop, tha knows.
There's something about Kes that is mesmeric that goes beyond filmmaking. Every frame, every line of dialogue is purposeful, it keeps the narrative flowing, whilst we the viewer become immersed in Billy's character and the constant barrage of impasses he faces.
The solace in a Kestrel in which Billy finds, is all the more potent when the evils of the finale come to fruition. It's at that moment that Billy's innocence is lost forever. Truly heartbreaking.
Classic British film about poverty and hopelessness in a Yorkshire mining town as seen through the eyes of a spirited young man. Abused and bullied both at home and at school, Billy leads a solitary life with little hope and a bleak future. The only thing that gives his life meaning is a kestrel that he has captured and trained. His relationship with the bird is not one of owner and pet... he knows that she is still wild, a free spirit that is a reflection of his own yearning. Shot in a straight-forward manner with real-life locations and a number of unprofessional actors, Kes is a believable and gritty film that lingers. A must-see.
Ken Loach est un cinéaste que je connais peu (seulement en réputation en fait) et je crois même qu'il s'agit là de mon premier visionnement d'un de ses films. Comme je m'y attendais, c'est intéressant et vise une forme ouverte avec un récit à bribes, même avec l'adaptation d'un roman. C'est franc, honnête et touchant, mais ça me laisse tout de même un peu froid. Par contre, j'ai passé un bon moment sans être renversé (et le film vieillit très bien), c'est simplement que son cinéma ne m'attire pas plus que ça. Bah ouais, c'est comme ça. J'aime bien un peu de tout, mais le temps file et les préférences vont finir par prendre le dessus sur le « vouloir tout connaître »...
I would have liked this film more if the bird was played by...oh, let's say...an ostrich.
First Ken Loach film for me and it sticks to the heart instantly. A film of my kind, a simple life, which doesn't just need anything bigger, but take everything precious on what we deserve. Loved it.
With incredible scenes, of a beauty hard to be captured, and great performances this picture will continue in your head for a long time.
"In a 2013 interview, director Ken Loach said that, upon its release, United Artists organised a screening of the film for some American executive and they said that they could understand Hungarian better than the dialect in the film."
The thought of anyone outside of the north let alone the UK trying out this film makes me chuckle.
Film #27 of May 2016 Scavenger Hunt
Task #16 : A film from the British kitchen sink realism movement
The whole British kitchen sink realism movement is interesting. I learned about it just this last semester with the film Look Back in Anger. Kes is by far a better film to watch through this movement as it feels so stylistic in the the same way I feel about Bicycle Thieves. For such a simple and very small film, it packs a whole lot of emotions from these characters
He talks about bringing up a hawk and it's so wonderful, you couldn't imagine.
High-rated movies with very few views. Suggestions are welcome.
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…