Pink Floyd - The Wall

1982

Pink Floyd - The Wall

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.

71%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 24

89%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 71,326
User image

Pink Floyd - The Wall Photos

Movie Info

This musical documentary examines the impact of legendary rock band Pink Floyd's iconic 11th studio album The Wall, examining how the work was created, as well as how it affected not just the band, but music history to come. ~ Cammila Collar, Rovi

Cast

Christine Hargreaves
as Pink's mother
James Laurenson
as Pink's father
Eleanor David
as Pink's wife
Kevin McKeon
as Young Pink
Bob Hoskins
as Manager
Jenny Wright
as American groupie
Alex McAvoy
as Teacher
David Bingham
as Little Pink
Ellis Dale
as English doctor
Ray Mort
as Playground father
Margery Mason
as Teacher's wife
Marjorie Mason
as Teacher's Wife
Robert Bridges
as American doctor
Michael Ensign
as Hotel manager
Marie Passarelli
as Spanish maid
Winston Rose
as Security Guard
Lorna Barton
as Groupie
Rod Bedall
as Groupie
Philip Davis
as Groupie
Gary Olsen
as Groupie
Joanna Dickens
as Dancing Teacher
John Scott Martin
as Dancing Teacher
Jonathan Scott
as Registrat
Jon Paul Morgan
as Housekeeper
Albert Moses
as Janitor
Vincent Wong
as Paramedic
Mark Newman
as Paramedic
Lucita Lijertwood
as Smash & Grab Lady
Diana King
as Wedding Witness
Roger Kemp
as Pink's Friend
View All

Critic Reviews for Pink Floyd - The Wall

All Critics (24) | Top Critics (5)

  • This isn't the most fun to listen to and some viewers don't find it to much fun to watch, but the 1982 film is without question the best of all serious fiction films devoted to rock.

    Nov 5, 2018 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • It's a pretty grim portrait, but even worse it is often repetitive and boring. There are probably enough powerful segments for half a dozen or so outstanding rock videos but not a full-length feature.

    Oct 23, 2018 | Full Review…
  • The film is explosively wild, raw, primitive, sometimes inarticulate. It is also totally theatrical and compelling. It's film as primal scream; seething with anger, alienation and despair.

    Apr 27, 2018 | Full Review…
  • Parker's visual synthesis with the music, much aided by Scarfe's rip-roaring visions of doom and destruction which turn light into darkness at the flick of a pen rather than a switch, is almost perfect.

    Jul 15, 2016 | Full Review…

    Derek Malcolm

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • "Do you think they'll drop the Bomb?" asks a loaded musical question at one irresistibly funny point. Obviously, they've already dropped it, and it's called "The Wall."

    Dec 21, 2015 | Full Review…
  • One of the more exceptional, unprecedented films to ever come from Great Britain, a guttural howl of rage at the darkest aspects of English culture.

    Jul 3, 2018 | Rating: 4.5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Pink Floyd - The Wall

  • Jun 25, 2016
    The movie looks very suitable for the album what the songs mean in this film. The band is popular, the album is popular and the film is not popular enough. I wish this was available on Blu-Ray.
    Film C Super Reviewer
  • Nov 04, 2012
    I'd just listened to Pink Floyd's The Wall for the first time a month ago or so. It completely blew me away and became an instant favorite; a complete sensory assault of passionate emotion, anger, and musical anarchy. Pink Floyd The Wall, directed by Alan Parker, attempts to bring Roger Waters' classic rock opera vision to the big screen and successfully does so. While the highlights are the more surrealistic images and the animated sequences, the musical scenes are also worth noting if only for the fact that almost all of them perfectly capture the emotional resonance of the music listened to on its own. If I had to choose, I'd listen to The Wall in the context of the album rather than the movie, but this is a compelling visual companion.
    Ryan M Super Reviewer
  • Sep 05, 2012
    It's "Tommy 2: Still Gotta Be On Drugs to Get It", only it has less cheesiness, more bleakness and, somehow, less plot than "Tommy". This film is certainly less optimistic than "Tommy", and really, I'm pretty surprised, seeing as how we're talking about Alan Parker, who, by 1982, already had such delightfully heartwarming classics under his belt as "Midnight Express" and "Shoot the Moon", and after this film, he continued to make such other uplifting fluff pieces as "Birdy" and, of course, the most optimistic of them all, "Angela's Ashes". Seriously though, Alan Parker isn't the chipperist Jones out there, so of course he's perfect to direct something as bleak as a partially animated showcase of Pink Floyd music that stars the guy from the darkly depressing, hardcore heartbreaker of a rock band that was The Boomtown Rats. Okay, all of this dark sarcasm in the classroom aside, I'm not necessarily recommending that you do acid, but if you're going to stop Skittling around and really taste the rainbow, then you might want to be careful with your Pink Floyd song selection, just in case of a bad trip, because when you look at the lyrics to "Comfortably Numb", they can be either really neatly trippy with their obvious drug references or a little bit depressing. Eh, whatever, the song's still a masterpiece of awe-inspiring proportions, because, man, few people can rock like Pink Floyd rocked with "Comfortably Numb"; not even Pink Floyd could rock like that again, as Roger Waters definately proved when he tried again in 1990, only with Van Morrison instead of David Gilmour. Wow, I'm wishing I was comfortably numb right now, because saying that hurt a little bit, and the Waters-Morrison cover isn't even that bad, it's just that it's not, you know, Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb", though as I said, not a whole lot of songs are. It certainly makes for a better song than a movie, for although this film is enjoyable and worth a whirl, especially if you're a fan of Pink Floyd... or acid, this product gets to be a bit too trippy for its own good. To break down "The Wall" for you kids out there, it's a darkly surreal art piece that meditates just as much, if not more on metaphorical imagery than it does on the almost obligatory "plot", which chronicles, in a non-linear fashion, the lonely youth and adulthood of fictional rockstar Pink through scarce dialogue, but instead, interpretive visuals and music from Pink Floyd's album "The Wall". It's an interesting concept, and certainly a daringly unique one, yet one that's bound to run into faults along the way and, sure enough, does, as the film's structure gets to be distancingly convoluted, or at least for a little while, because as repetitious as this film is, you're bound to figure out where it's going after a while. The film isn't monotonous, yet its defining style and, to a certain degree, "plot" do begin to run in circles on more than a few occasions and lose steam, and by extension, their meaning, a problem exacerbated by the film's focus getting to be a bit hazed, as it will sometimes find itself focusing too much on metaphorical style than story, and will sometimes even find itself focusing too much on the gimmick of the style, rather its substance. The film is generally committed to its interpretive themes and isn't quite as gimmicky as its concept makes it sound, yet it's hard to pretty much literally make an album into a film without getting gimmicky, let alone when that adaptation is riddled with stylish imagery, and with all of the film's good intentions of artistry, subtlety and depth will lapse, thus leaving this film to occasionally plummet into being not much more than an hour-and-a-half-long advertizement for a then-almost-three-year-old album, which I suppose I don't mind too much, partially because when this film goes back to avant-garde artistry, it gets to be too much of that for its own good. When the music dies down and all of the strange imagery calms itself down, the film, of course, gets really quiet and meditative, and by extension, slow, occasionally to the point of being just plain dull, and certainly to the point of feeling a bit pretentious, or at least more so than usual, as the film, while not arrogant, boasts a certain degree of consistent self-congradulation. This pretentiousness isn't terribly extreme, yet even if it was more intense, it would have to be pretty intense to not be the least of this film's problems, as this film is what it is, and what it is is what you would expect: sometimes slow, a bit uneven in focus, occasionally gimmicky, a smidge self-congradulatory and altogether not terribly upstanding, yet don't go in expecting those expected problems to be as severe as you expected. Again, the film is what it is, and for what it is, it's all but worthwhile, for although this film gets to be too much of what it is, as well as a bit unintentionally messy in structure, to not be underwhelming, what this film does get right is worthwhile, and that certainly includes style. Peter Biziou's photography is indeed something to behold, being cleverly well-staged to produce strikingly neat shots, complimented by handsome lighting that finds occasions in which it's beautifully radiant in a fitting surreal fashion, while Gerald Scarfe leaves the film to continue to dazzle even during its animated moments by crafting, albeit disturbing and sometimes too bizarre, yet generally excellent cartoons that sometimes get to be too far-out, but generally make good use of their taking this film out of reality to bring the film's metaphors more down to earth. The film's visual style is lush and really brings the film's imagery to life, though perhaps not quite as much as the audible style, because if anything beats stylish toons in this film, then it's got to be stylish tunes. As the title tells you, the film is based on Pink Floyd's "The Wall", an awesome album that offers some of the band's best work, so you better believe that this soundtrack is excellent and boasts groovy, grand and thought-provoking tunes that you're likely to appreciating even more when watching this film, as the music's quality goes backed up by some toe-tappingly stylish musical numbers, - complimented by Gerry Hambling's snappy editing - while its depth goes backed up by a man who's no stranger to metaphorical drama. Just as much as it makes for a challenging music showcase piece, Roger Waters' script makes for a challenging directing piece, being driven entirely by concepts of interpretive atmosphere and symbolism, rather than dialogue and exposition, and while subtlety and focus will occasionally fault, on the whole, Alan Parker steps up and delivers an impressive directorial performance, often keeping the film's quieter moments a bit too quiet, yet generally manipulating the quietness to somberly meditate upon the dramatic depth of the "story" - such as it is - and sometimes draw a fair degree of effectiveness, intensified by an underwritten yet engagingly atmospheric lead performance by Bob Geldof. Still, it's how Parker handles Pink Floyd's songs that impresses the most, for although Parker gets to be a bit heavy-handed with his interpretive musical cues, he always makes sure to really play up the music for your enjoyment, yet he still, more often than not, takes restraint and unravels both music and visuals in graceful conjunction in order to draw from the symbolism of the music and marry it with the atmosphere of the interpretive "story"telling, - thus strengthening the film's thematically symbolic subtlety and metaphorical depth when it needs to be conveyed the most - while also absorbing the music's more soulful aspects as fine substitutes for dialogue and exposition in drawing dramatic poignancy from the "story", thus creating sometimes genuinely effective emotional resonance. Okay, seriously, I joke about how there's not much plot to this film, but there is a story at the core of this film's focus, and it is genuinely worthy and compelling, as are the film's thought-provoking themes and metaphors, and while the delivery of the film's worthy story and themes are often mishandled, they're generally well-sold by Alan Parker for his inspired direction, Bob Geldof for his engagingly atmospheric lead acting performance and Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters for his cleverly unique screenplay, even if it does get to be too unique for its own good. The film does deserve to be better and even has the tools to be better, though at the end of the day, it makes too many faults to be as strong as it should be, and yet, what this film does get right gives us glimpses of a stronger film, and just enough so for you to walk away having had a generally enjoyable, really trippy time. To break down this metaphorical wall, the film all too often succumbs to such expected flaws as moderate self-righteousness, occasional lapses in subtlety and moments of a rather gimmicky feel, as well as to slow spots, a bit of repetition, an occasionally uneven thematic focus and altogether not enough consistent bite for the final product to be as sharp as it very well could have been, yet with that all said, the film still hits more than it misses, delivering on a striking style - brought to life by Gerry Hambling's excellent editing, Peter Biziou's beautiful photography and, when it comes into play, Gerald Scarfe's excellently trippy animation - and a stellar soundtrack, played with cleverly by director Alan Parker to mostly subtly emphasize the thought-provoking metaphorical themes and, with the help of Bob Geldof's "comfortably numb", and by that I mean compellingly atmospheric, intriguing dramatic depth within Roger Waters' unique screenplay, thus leaving "Pink Floyd: The Wall" to stand as an improvable, yet generally enjoyably surreal and rather thought-provokingly lyrical interpretation of some of most inspired musical work of the legendary progressive rock band. 2.5/5 - Fair
    Cameron J Super Reviewer
  • Mar 05, 2012
    A silly rock musical that seems made by a dazzled hippie student who wants to rebel against the system without really knowing why (and it doesn't help that the lyrics are so repetitious and expository sometimes); but at least a nice dose of surrealism is always welcome.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer

Pink Floyd - The Wall Quotes

News & Features