The Long Day Closes (1992)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Long Day Closes Photos

Movie Info

Terence Davies' blissful, evocative and non-narrative follow-up to his Distant Voices, Still Lives follows a few months in the life of 12-year-old Bud (Leigh McCormack), in impressionistic snatches of his everyday existence growing up in the Liverpool of 1956. Bud's world is influenced by his mother (Marjorie Yates), his older sister Helen (Ayse Owens), and his older brothers John (Nicholas Lamont) and Kevin (Anthony Watson). Bud is a lonely and quiet child whose moments of solace occur when he sits in rapture at the local cinema, watching towering and iconic figures on the movie screen. The movies give Bud the strength to get through another day as he deals with his oppressive school environment and his burgeoning homosexuality.
Drama , Kids & Family
Directed By:
Written By:
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The Film Desk


Ayse Owens
as Helen
Jimmy Wilde
as Curly
Robin Polley
as Mr. Nicholls
Peter Ivatts
as Mr. Bushell
Joy Blakeman
as Frances
Kirk McLaughlin
as Laborer/Christ
Marcus Heath
as Black Man
Karl Skeggs
as Albie
Peter Hollier
as 2nd Bully
Jason Jevons
as 3rd Bully
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Long Day Closes

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (2)

[An] exquisite, impressionistic, largely autobiographical reverie ...

Full Review… | February 28, 2016
New Yorker
Top Critic

There's no traditional story to speak of here, no dramatic conflict to send the characters off on a goal or motivating action to set a series of events in motion. Rather, Davies offers cinematic snapshots capturing privileged moments...

Full Review… | April 3, 2014
Turner Classic Movies Online

[T]hough his work is always suffused with melancholy, the predominate feeling of The Long Day Closes is one of deep, enveloping love for the music, movies, and comforts of his youth.

Full Review… | February 7, 2014
The Dissolve

Davies keeps looking back until it hurts, and that's where his art begins.

Full Review… | January 29, 2014
Movie Metropolis

Though not as fully realized and touching as the original masterpiece of Distant Voices, the sequel is very much worth seeing.

Full Review… | August 18, 2012

The Long Day Closes posits its pubescent protagonist as a tiny camera absorbing and transforming the reality all around him.

Full Review… | March 26, 2012
Slant Magazine

Audience Reviews for The Long Day Closes

a lyrical ode to a boy's love for cinema, incorporating songs from the 50s and dialogue from classic hollywood films. it's a unique approach, rendering an impression of memories rather than a straight narrative structure. very well done

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

Wasn't that big of a fan of Distant Voices, Still Lives but I liked this look at Bud. Interesting issues of growing up gay in an intolerant time.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

If you see poetry as a way of looking at life- a particular awareness or appreciation perhaps- then this film is about as close as you can get to a representation of poetry on film (along with Davies earlier- and quite similar biographical film- 'Distant Voices, Still Lives'). Memory sometimes reduces things into metonymy, and this could be used to explain the beautiful simplicity of the visuals- usually emphasising a certain aspect of living- time passing, light hitting a surface etc... bringing it out of obscurity and making the viewer focus singularly on that aspect... which is why this film could be labelled transcendental. Things that pass, or are taken for granted in everyday life transcend themselves in this film. If you have enjoyed this film I would strongly recommend that you see 'Distant Voices, Still Lives' as well as the great works of directors such as Robert Bresson and Andrei Tarkovsky- examples of other directors whose gaze turns life into poetry. Was the above review useful to you?

Cassandra Maples
Cassandra Maples

Super Reviewer

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