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High Hopes

Philip Davis , Ruth Sheen , Mike Leigh    Unrated   DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 120.71
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thatcher's Refugees Aug. 30 2009
Mike Leigh has a sharp eye for people and their foibles. Much of his work deflates the pompous windbags, socially important, but mostly unimportant, who dwell in contemporary England.

The heart of the story is an older, widow lady, barely getting by in her council flat in London. Her condition and home are items from a kinder, more generous past when a social safety net was built after WWII. It is now under a ferocious assault by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

The widow's socialist son and his partner struggle on, surviving in low paying jobs. They make an effort to look in and care for the old lady. Her yuppy next door neighbors bought their home when all low rent housing was put up for sale. They are disgusted that the widow will not paint or refurbish her rental property. Her vacuous daughter is so busy climbing the social ladder by spending her husband's money that she has no time for her mother. Her husband is an odious businessman who allows his wife to create the facade at home while he has a bit of stuff on the side.

None of the characters are perfect or really nice. That is how Mike Leigh sees life.
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5.0 out of 5 stars High Hopes May 6 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A brilliant depiction of life in London during the Thatcher regime. I will certainly watch this gem again.
True reality and comedy at its best.
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Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Long overdue to region 1 DVD! June 26 2009
By Bob Rousseau - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I've been waiting for "High Hopes" to appear as a Region 1 DVD for a long time. It's the film that introduced me to Mike Leigh's films some 20 odd years ago, and what a glorious adventure it's been! The fantastic ensemble cast includes long-time Leigh actor Philip Davis as an aging leftist motorcycle messenger trying to grapple with a mother who is heading towards probable dementia, a girlfriend who wants to have children while he himself isn't sure children should be brought into the world, and a nouveau riche sister who is all about style over substance. While it's been argued that the affluent characters in the film are presented with less dimension than the others, Leigh doesn't hesistate to portray the leftist characters as baffled about how to turn words into actions. This film is also another example of Leigh's amazing talent for chronicling family dysfunction which he continued to utilize in later films like "Secrets and Lies". This piece is well worth your time!
0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Early Misstep June 27 2013
By mr. contrarian - Published on Amazon.com
If you are new to Mike Leigh, by all means watch "Secrets & Lies", "Another Year", or "Happy Go Lucky" first. In 1988, he was still experimenting with his improvisations. This one lacks enough character development, plot, or back story. It seems he is making EVERYONE above middle class idiotic cruel narcissists and everyone below it warm hearted and fair. The sloppy speech at the grave of Karl Marx almost ruins the whole film. Luckily, he wouldn't make those mistakes again.
4 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars no subtitles Aug. 28 2010
By R BALAKRISHNAN - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A lovely film with poor sound quality and no subtitles in english to make up for it. Bad buy.
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