The Selfish Giant (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Selfish Giant (2013)

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Starkly emotional and beautifully directed, The Selfish Giant uses a lovely script and some powerful performances to present some of the best that modern British cinema has to offer.

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Movie Info

THE SELFISH GIANT is a contemporary fable about 13 year old Arbor (Conner Chapman) and his best friend Swifty (Shaun Thomas). Excluded from school and outsiders in their own neighborhood, the two boys meet Kitten (Sean Gilder), a local scrapdealer - the Selfish Giant. They begin collecting scrap metal for him using a horse and cart. Swifty has a natural gift with horses while Arbor emulates Kitten - keen to impress him and make some money. However, Kitten favors Swifty, leaving Arbor feeling hurt and excluded, driving a wedge between the boys. Arbor becomes increasingly greedy and exploitative, becoming more like Kitten. Tensions build, leading to a tragic event, which transforms them all.
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 limited
On DVD:
Box Office:
$12,189.00
Runtime:
Studio:

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Cast

Conner Chapman
as Arbor Fenton
Shaun Thomas
as Swifty
Sean Gilder
as Kitten
Ian Burfield
as Mick Brazil
Siobhan Finneran
as Mrs. Swift (Swifty's Mother)
Steve Evets
as Price Drop (Swifty's Dad)
Rebecca Manley
as Shelly Fenton
Rhys McCoy
as Daniel
Elliott Tittensor
as Martin Fenton
Ralph Ineson
as Johnny Jones
Everal A. Walsh
as Railway Man
John Wall
as School Nurse
Jamie Michie
as Teacher
Bailey Clapham
as Swift Children
Jake Gibson
as Swift Children
Sofina-Rose Hussain
as Swift Children
Peter-Lee Lowther
as Swift Children
Aron Ryan
as Swift Children
Macy Shackleton
as Swift Children
Patrick McCann
as Neighbour
Dougie Rooks
as Deputy Headteacher
Reece Andrews
as Headteacher
James Fox
as Passerby
Kayle Stephens
as Chip 'n' Pin Sulky Rider
Michael Cahill
as 'Smart Price Drop' Man
Paul Chapman
as Caretaker
Beverly Higgins
as School Secretary
Harry Calvert
as Scrap Yard Worker
Robert Hudson
as Power Station Worker
Rob Snell
as Power Station Worker
Max Smith
as Power Station Worker
Chris Yates
as Power Station Worker
Ken Christiansen
as Policeman
Vicki Hackett
as WPC Hayward
Robert Emms
as Phil the Barman
Garry Page
as Garry
Tim Paley
as Driver
David Peel
as Huddersfield Scrapyard Man
Joshua Haase
as Policeman
Simon Hearn
as Policeman
Mark Pitts
as Policeman
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News & Interviews for The Selfish Giant

Critic Reviews for The Selfish Giant

All Critics (75) | Top Critics (22)

"The Selfish Giant" is a story of dependence, damage and desperation, told with grit and grimy frankness. It's also a portrait of friendship born of need and emptiness, on the road to nowhere.

Full Review… | February 19, 2014
Detroit News
Top Critic

Clio Barnard's The Selfish Giant isn't the Oscar Wilde children's story, but more an inspired take on it in the kitchen-sink style of a Ken Loach drama.

Full Review… | January 23, 2014
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Ultimately, it's a sad, tough sit - but worth seeing for its gritty honesty and strong cast.

January 16, 2014
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Much of the movie is hard to bear, yet it never drags, thanks to the momentum that Barnard finds in the fable, and, above all, to the energy that she unleashes in her young leads.

Full Review… | January 13, 2014
New Yorker
Top Critic

[A] wrenching story of working-poor desperation in northern England.

Full Review… | January 9, 2014
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

The Selfish Giant is a film of such power and beauty that there will be no escaping it -- so long as you go to see it in the first place.

Full Review… | January 3, 2014
The New Republic
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Selfish Giant

Barnard displays an incredibly firm hand in the direction of this powerful piece of British social realism that brings to mind the works of Ken Loach and is above all a rich character study with a great onscreen chemistry between the excellent Conner Chapman and Shaun Thomas.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

½

'The Selfish Giant'. The sucker punch of that first beautiful frame to the relentless bleakness that follows is cruel. Miserable, masterful. Outstanding, gritty performances from first-timers, and a director whose future I will follow eagerly, given the worlds she seems to want to delve into.

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Super Reviewer

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