Kes (1969)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.


Movie Info

In this 1969 Ken Loach film, a 15-year-old named Billy Casper (played by acting newcomer David Bradley) suffers abuse both at home and at school in Yorkshire, England. At his home in the working-class section of Barnsley, Billy's brother beats him and his family neglects him. At school, most of his teachers ridicule and reject him, especially sadistic Mr. Sugden (Brian Glover. Like other downtrodden children in an outmoded social system favoring the ruling class, Billy appears headed for a … More

Rating: PG-13 (for language, nudity and some teen smoking)
Genre: Drama, Art House & International, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Barry Hines
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 19, 2011
Runtime:
Image Entertainment

Cast


as Billy Casper

as Mrs. Casper

as Mr. Farthing

as Mr. Sugden

as Tibbutt

as Comedian at Pub

as Fish and Chip Shop M...
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Kes

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (6)

Kes is one of the most astute, engaged films about education and what it takes for kids to be excited about learning or passionate about anything, really, whether in the classroom or roaming the fields with a feathered friend.

Full Review… | March 14, 2015
Time Out
Top Critic

A classic of British social realism.

Full Review… | April 18, 2011
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Simply, the filmmakers have brought the background of the boy's life vividly into reality.

Full Review… | April 18, 2011
Variety
Top Critic

Kes, admirably photographed by Chris Menges (who was camera operator on Poor Cow) is not to be lightly dismissed; and Loach's success with young players especially makes one eager to see his forthcoming film for the Save the Children Fund.

Full Review… | March 16, 2015
Sight and Sound

One of the nation's finest film-makers at an early peak.

Full Review… | March 16, 2015
Times [UK]

Ken Loach seems to acquire a surer mastery of his art with each picture, yet this, one of his earliest features, is still one of his best.

Full Review… | March 16, 2015
Radio Times

Audience Reviews for Kes

Whoops,...I had never heard of this British gem.

Well directed drama feels almost entirely undirected. Social-realist look at young boy growing up in a Northern mining town. I thought the domestic scenes a bit cliche, but the school scenes were great and the football scene was hilariously on the mark.

Billy Casper looks just like a young Mark E. Smith of the Fall ... no?

brooklynspo
Bob Stinson

Super Reviewer

½

[img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]

This much adored Ken Loach picture is a likable, smart and rightfully depressing film. However for me there was a small sense of a lack of emotional involvement. The tone of it frequently changed from being a coming of age drama to a family film and then back again, which I found slightly confusing. However the performances are genuinely emotionally resonant and the narrative itself is interesting and inspirational. Despite having one of the most unredemptive endings i've ever seen for what was meant to be, essentialy, a film partly about redemption. It's sweet yet edgy, and it maintains as a good example of classic British cinema.

Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Northern England, 1969, and life is pretty glum for an introspective lad just finishing up regular school. Its the system, you see, that handles people like products in an immense factory. It breeds ... inhumanity. But one found hobby gives our boy some dignity, and that's the training of a wild creature. Stark and oppressive, Loach's commentary on modern times seen through adolescence rings too true to be ignored.

ApeneckFletcher
Apeneck Fletcher

Super Reviewer

Kes Quotes

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