Writer: Lee Hall (Screenplay)
Starring: Jamie Bell, Jean Heywood, Julie Walters, Gary Lewis, Jamie Draven
Plot: A talented young boy becomes torn between his unexpected love of dance and the disintegration of his family.
Tagline – Inside every one of us is a special talent waiting to come out. The trick is finding it.
Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: One for all the Dreamers
Story: Billy Elliot starts as we meet Billy (Bell) a young boy in Durham, England during the miners strike in the 80’s, his father (Lewis) wants him to compete in man sports like football or boxing, but when Billy sees ballet being performed and wants to learn it himself.
Showing how talented he could be the instructor Mrs Wilkinson (Walters) lets him take the class seeing how he could be the next big thing, but Billy’s dad forbids him from dancing, leaving Billy to need to find a new way to practise behind his father’s back.
Thoughts on Billy Elliot
Characters – Billy Elliot is the 11-year-old boy that dreams of becoming a ballet dancer, but must learn behind his family’s back because they see it as not manly enough for him to be doing. Billy’s Dad doesn’t want his son doing dancing, he is in the middle of the miner’s strike trying to prove just how tough the likes of his men are, he must learn to accept his son’s talent to let him free from the rough lifestyle he could be raised through. Mrs Wilkinson is the dance instructor that gives Billy the chance to take up dancing, teaching him the discipline needed to be the talented he could be.
Performances – Jamie Bell broke onto the scene here, he is fantastic as the young boy drawn to dancing, he showed everyone that he was going to be a star. Gary Lewis is good as Billy’s dad needing the aggressive side when needed while also showing the passion to support his family too. Julie Walters is great as the instructor showing us the desire to see someone succeed.
Story – The story of the young boy going against tradition to become a ballet dancer when his world is considered closed of true opportunities. This is a tested formula with other sports or skills based movies before and is one that is enjoyable. The backdrop of the miner’s strike helps show how far away from hope he could be but most of all this film shows how to follow your dreams.
Musical/Romance – The music side of the film shows how important the music is to ballet with the romance taking a back step but also being everything you would expect for the era the film is set in.
Settings – The small town where the miner’s live shows us how depressed the environment would be for the family’s living there, it shows how important the escape is going to be for Billy.
Final Thoughts – This is an enjoyable drama about the struggle to take part in something you love. This is one you could enjoy to understand a moment in history too.
Overall: Must watch dream drama.