Beautiful Thing

Critics Consensus

An engaging slice of life drama that happens to double as a gay coming-of-age story, Beautiful Thing captures its place and time with deceptive depth and skill.



Total Count: 22


Audience Score

User Ratings: 10,383
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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 hard-headed brother. One night, Jamie and Sandra discover that Ste has been kicked out of the apartment and has nowhere to spend the night; Jamie lets him stay at his place, and a casual closeness eventually stirs sexual feelings. While both were vaguely aware they might be gay, neither had ever acted on their impulses, and once Jamie and Ste decide that they're attracted to each other, neither is sure just what to do. Tony (Ben Daniels), Sandra's boyfriend, doesn't know what to think about Jamie's new lifestyle. Meanwhile, Jamie and Ste are themselves a bit puzzled by their neighbor Leah (Tameka Empson), a teenager obsessed with the life and music of Mama Cass Elliott. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi


Linda Henry
as Sandra Gangel
Glen Berry
as Jamie Gangel
Scott Neal
as Ste Pearce
Daniel Bowers
as Trevor Pearce
Beth Goddard
as Brewery Official
Anna Karen
as Marlene
Liane Ware
as Claire
Dave Lynn
as Drag Performer
Jonathan Harvey
as Wheelchair Queen
Meera Syal
as Miss Chauhan
Martin Walsh
as Mr Bennett
Steven M. Martin
as Ryan McBride
Garry Cooper
as Ronnie Pearce
John Benfield
as Rodney Barr
Davyd Harries
as Brewery Official
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Critic Reviews for Beautiful Thing

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (9) | Fresh (20) | Rotten (2)

Audience Reviews for Beautiful Thing

  • May 31, 2016
    An unusually realistic British comedy about the teenage love between the shy Jamie and troubled Ste, they also need to deal with Jamie's nosy mum and their dysfunctional neighbour. It's really cute and natural which is why I really like the film. It was also really hilarious, but it was kinda sad to see the state of London in the 90s.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Jun 09, 2015
    I'm going to hold off on providing a higher rating for this film which probably deserves it solely for the touching nature of the two leads and how they interact with one another. What loses the film points is unlikelihood of the eventual acceptance of the couple and a plodding side story that adds nothing to the central picture other than minutes.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • May 24, 2013
    For those who think the movie contains explicit gay sex scene, you can chill, it doesn't. Beautiful Thing shares the same artsy taste with Brokeback Mountain, and tells a humane & heart-wrenching tale of a gay theme coming-age love story between two teenagers against the backdrop of South London. 8/10.
    Mesh B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 27, 2012
    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.
    Christian C Super Reviewer

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