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Beautiful Thing (1996)

tomatometer

89

Average Rating: 6.8/10
Critic Reviews: 9
Fresh: 8 | Rotten: 1

No consensus yet.

audience

93

liked it
Average Rating: 4.2/5
User Ratings: 10,191

My Rating

Movie Info

In this alternately somber and witty coming-of-age drama, a pair of teenage boys growing up in a working-class neighborhood become aware of their homosexuality. Introspective Jamie (Glen Berry) is the son of Sandra (Linda Henry), a tough but warm-hearted barmaid who lives in a public housing block in a rough-and-tumble section of South London. Living a few doors away is Jamie's classmate Ste (Scott Neal), an athletic type who often has to take a beating from his hard-drinking father and

R,

Drama, Comedy

Jonathan Harvey

May 20, 2003

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All Critics (30) | Top Critics (12) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (2) | DVD (9)

Because the film is so effective for its first two-thirds and because it has its heart in the right place throughout, audiences may be willing to forgive its final third.

February 14, 2001 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If Beautiful Thing were any more sensitive, it would faint.

January 1, 2000
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Reminds me of some of Jonathan Demme's early movies, where ordinary people are celebrated for their eccentricities but not condescended to.

January 1, 2000
Film.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Represents a keen, personal look at the difficulties of growing up gay in a heterosexual world.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: ReelViews
ReelViews
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Beautiful Thing isn't particularly deep, nor is it a great piece of filmmaking, but it's so sweet-natured and well-acted that it's hard to resist.

January 1, 2000
Film.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The boys' lives contain few surprises ... but from the other characters there is one astonishment after another.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comment (1)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

just as it 'takes a village' to raise a child, the 'village' elevates this otherwise ordinary drama

July 27, 2003 Full Review Source: Old School Reviews
Old School Reviews

Beautiful Thing might be the most beloved of all the gay-youth movies released in the late 90s

April 27, 2003 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

Delightful English film which charts the dawning of love between two homosexuals.

August 28, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

This movie has a sharply observed sense of family and community and astonishingly natural acting.

January 9, 2002 Full Review Source: Movieline
Movieline

The performances are mostly quite good, but the script definitely needs work.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Manages to do what few films have done -- convey coming out with the specificity that draws viewers in while conveying a universality that hits home.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco Examiner

Audience Reviews for Beautiful Thing

Touching film with quite capable actors. As an American, however, I must say that it was often difficult to follow the dialogue due to the thick accents and use of unfamiliar British slang. Despite this difficulty, I would recommend this movie highly to an American looking for a well-done, meaningful LGBT film.
October 27, 2012
cchclaw

Super Reviewer

It's a sweet coming of age tale. Set in 1995 it was great to see in the background some Batman Forever candy holders. I used to have these and they were coooool. Anyway the film deals with its subject splendidly and avoids cliche, however as a byproduct of this it also seems to avoid any real conflict. Though it is good to see a guy bullied who isn't bothered by it. Ben Daniels is brilliant as the caring but clueless Tony but the real stand out is Tameka Empson as the Mama Cass obsessed youth. She lights up the screen and steals every moment she's in. A nice script that fashions its scenarios via realistic set-ups although the end dance is a BIT much.
July 31, 2008
kiriyamakazou

Super Reviewer

wonderful with a great soundtrack.
April 6, 2007
jjnxn
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

I think the story occasionally gets lost in a few unnecessary secondary characters but it still remains an emotionally charged love story. The film's very final scene makes a powerful statement about homosexuality and how it is seen by the world. Plus I'm always up for a story about working class Brits because that accent is magnificent.
March 8, 2009
Alec Barniskis

Super Reviewer

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

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