56 Up

2012, Documentary, 2h 23m

69 Reviews 5,000+ Ratings

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critics consensus

Director Michael Apted continues to utilize cinema as a window into the lives of everyday people, and in the reflection of this documentary we can glimpse our own aging humanity. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

Continuing a project he began in 1964, filmmaker Michael Apted revisits his original subjects and sees how their lives are progressing now that they are 56 years old.

Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for 56 Up

Audience Reviews for 56 Up

  • Mar 31, 2019
    This chapter makes for an always engaging look at middle age, even though there is not so much novelty here since 49 Up, especially as it feels that Apted is not that interested in exploring some issues more deeply (like when he barely questions Tony about his unconscious racism).
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Nov 03, 2013
    I am so glad I finally got to watch this. I realise most of the participants don't really like being a part if this any more (if they ever did), but I still find it fascinating. I also was left thinking two of the participants had married each other for a moment. That would have been interesting.
    Angela A Super Reviewer
  • Mar 03, 2013
    Far more than just a movie 56 UP and the Up series stand alone as one of the most sociological important touchstones of our time. Astounding to see the child-like wonderment give way to harsh reality in most of the children. It gives one pause to reflect on their own life and see how far one has come...or not. This is cinematic perfection. (3-3-13 UT)
    John C Super Reviewer
  • Jan 27, 2013
    As fascinating as it can be for many to see the changes in the participants over the years, it can be just as interesting for cineastes to see how the series evolves over time, namely how it has become increasingly self-aware. For example, one person returns to the series after decades away to promote his band while another uses it to continue to promote Bulgarian charities successfully. And I loved the Buzz Aldrin story, by the way. But what I gained this time around was a profound knowledge of how different Great Britain really is, especially how university education is not necessarily a given over there, unlike here in the States. So, maybe the class system is alive and well in Britain, despite one who protests it was never there in the first place, followed by a scene of a fox hunt. This time, the politics is less about the subtext, becoming front and center with Michael Apted even calling out one of the participants for some of his objectionable comments. This is all in the wake of the Great Recession which drastically alters some lives at an age where people would be ordinarily starting to look forward to retirement, just as London takes center stage in the world for the Summer Olympics in 2012.
    Walter M Super Reviewer

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