Film Review and Rating / Synopsis

(Please note the films reviewed on this site contain plot summaries and may contain SPOILERS.)

  • Hindle Wakes (1927) - Plot Summary - In Hindle, Lancashire - "Wakes Week" is a week off for holiday after a year of drudgery in the cotton mills. Modern young Fanny (Estelle Brody) and her gal pal Mary, two factory girls, go off by train to spend their holiday week in Blackpool, Britain's version of Coney Island. They meet up with two young men, one of which is Allan (John Stuart), he's the son of the wealthy owner of the cotton mill where the girls work and engaged to Beatrice, daughter of the Mayor of Hindle. Fanny and Allan immediately "click" as they spend a day of fun, including a spin on the dance floor that evening where they romantically appear to be falling in love. They stay out all night, then run away together to secretly spend the rest of the week alone in Llandudno - but as tragedy strikes, both their family's find out, and this film turns into a real soaper (gosh, Fanny has a mean mum - she beats up her daughter, and flashes her some really hateful looks too. All the girl did was spend a week with a man, and, I mean, he's handsome and rich to boot).

    Review - The first half of this film is absolutely terrific and loaded with neat photography - the camera strapped to the rides of Blackpool (hey, that tunnel slide they go down looks really fun to me!), the play of light over a huge dance floor full of hundreds of moving dancers, plus lots of close-ups of shoes - the shuffling feet of workers as they trudge into the factory, the dancing feet of the dancers gliding along the dance hall floor, even the shoes of Fanny and Allan as they wake up in the morning at the beginning of the movie, immediately revealing that one is poor, the other rich. The second half of the film drags slightly, but still I must say this is a terrific movie. The music, an orchestral score done by British group In the Nursery, gave this film a haunting, romantic, and tragic quality that suited the movie and, I thought, increased the enjoyment of the film. There is also an alternate piano score available on the DVD, done by Phil Carli. The DVD is from Milestone Films and has a black and white print that has a good amount of contrast and looks great. Really, really enjoyed this one. Rating - * 10/10 stars *

    Director: Maurice Elvey
    Film Genre: Drama
    Film Runtime: 120 minutes
    UK Original Title: Hindle Wakes (Also Known as Fanny Hawthorne (USA))



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RATINGS KEY:

10 = Absolutely Fabulous/Superb
9 = Really Good/Excellent
8 = Good
7 = Fairly Good/Decent
6 = So-so, some flaws
5 = Mediocre
4 = Not that good, many flaws
3 = Poor
2 = Very Poor/Stinker
1 = One of the worst BOMBS ever filmed




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