Dagenham, 1968: an era of sepia tones, Mary Quant and appalling pay disparity between the sexes.
Made in Dagenham (October 1) centres on seat-stitcher, Rita (played by Sally Hawkins) a feisty but put-upon worker at the Ford assembly plant in Dagenham who, after much encouragement from the loveable janitor Bob Hoskins, rebels against the sexist patriarchy and demands equal pay and work conditions for her and her sewing sisters.All in all, a visually impressive effort with a competent cast.
However, my enjoyment was diminished by the fact that in real life the women’s victory was ultimately a loss, as Ford immediately redesigned their car seat covers following the ruling to render manual sewing – the very type of work done by Dagenham’s ladies – redundant.
Bet there were some very cross stitchers after that.
On the edgier side of things: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (October 6), the follow-up to 1987’s Wall Street, a film that followed greedy stockbrokers as they snorted coke, argued about hedge funds and generally back-stabbed everyone in the eternal quest for the almighty dollar.
Set 23 years after the original, WS: MNS opens on the villainous Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), newly released from prison where he was incarcerated for having bankrupted his company at the end of the first movie. The reformed Gekko attempts to warn the wags of Wall Street about the impending stock market crash but no-one’s listening. So, Gekko sets about re-establishing a relationship with estranged daughter Winnie (such an ’80s name!) with the help of her stock trader boyfriend, Jacob (Shia LaBeouf).
When Jacob’s mentor is murdered, Gekko agrees to help him seek revenge on the culprit in exchange for helping him re-connect with Winnie. A win –win(nie) situation all round!
Next up is The Life and Times of Charlie St Cloud (October 8), starring Zac Efron as a sibling left bereft following the death of his beloved younger brother Sam (played by cute newcomer Charlie Tahan).
Charlie promises to never forget his brother and even gets a job at the cemetery where he’s buried to be close to him. Charlie’s life atrophies as he tries to deal with his guilt following Sam’s death. Poor Charlie. What could possibly heal the hurt of a dead sibling? Yes, you guessed it: a ravishing, yet attainable lady who teaches you that life is for living, of course!
Mawkish, emotional cheese fest.