The gritty world of 1980s class politics is brought vividly to life in this rousing film about a group of gay activists who find unlikely allies in the mining communities of South Wales at the height of the bitter 1984 strike. Mark Ashton, the charismatic founder member of Lesbians and Gays Support The Miners, (portrayed superbly by newcomer Ben Schlechter) boldly helps form a disjointed and fractious group of young gay activists into an effective fundraising force who are dedicated to supporting the miners as they battle in the long months hunger and deprivation brought about by the strike.
Hostile scenes initially accompany the group’s arrival in the Dulais Valley mining community, where suspicion and narrow minded prejudice from some locals threatens to jeopardise their mission. The two embattled communities soon discover that they can work together to form an effective fundraising force which aims to spread the news of the miners plight on the streets of London.
Matthew Warchus’s film successfully captures the spirit of the times with “Thatcher Out” banners hanging from derelict blocks of flats and miner’s wives stacking up donated cans of food in empty committee halls. Pride is a feelgood mix of a Made in Dagenham style expose of working class politics and a 1980’s Trainspotting, with its focus on social realism and ironic humour.
Pride is open in cinemas now. For more, visit www.pridemovie.co.uk.