Film by Ken Loach
Duration : 110 Minutes
Ashwin Hospital Auditorium , Ganapathy CBE
07th October 2007 ; 5.45 pm
Call 94430 39630
Ranked seventh in the British Film Institute's recent selection of the 100 favourite British films of the 20th century, Kes remains Ken Loach's masterpiece. While the director has reached similar aesthetic heights in subsequent years (Days of Hope  and Raining Stones  immediately spring to mind), the film remains a template for Loach's abiding concerns: the struggle of the British working class to achieve life's basic needs, dramatised through the plight of an individual character; the significant impact of public institutions upon personal lives; sensitive performances with an ear for regional dialects; and an unobtrusive yet evocative visual style that illuminates character and place in a naturalistic fashion. Arriving as the '60s drew to a close, Kes heralds the end of “kitchen sink realism” and the true arrival of one of contemporary cinema's major artists.
Kes details the life of Billy Casper (David Bradley), a lonely teen facing a bleak future in a
Born in 1936 at Nuneaton,
In 1966 Loach made the socially influential docu-drama Cathy Come Home portraying neglected subjects such as homelessness and unemployment, and presenting a powerful and influential critique of the workings of the Social Services. In the late 1960s he started directing films, and in 1969 made Kes, the story of a troubled boy and his kestrel, based on the novel A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines. It remains perhaps his best known film in
Loach experienced a miraculous, creative resurgence in the 1990s with the advent of Channel 4 funding and producers Sally Hibbin and Rebecca O'Brien. His recent films invest warmth and humour in their characters' plights while allowing political alternatives to develop naturally out of the narratives. Like Cathy Come Home or Kes, they also sympathetically address the issues facing working class families, including union politics (Riff Raff , Bread and Roses ), familial difficulties (Raining Stones, Ladybird Ladybird ), drugs and alcoholism (My Name is Joe , Sweet Sixteen ) and contemporary political struggles (Hidden Agenda , Carla's Song ) and Wind That Shakes The Barely .
Ken Loach is a director admired, and often loved, all over the world. For his remarkable output, Loach has won numerous international prizes and long overdue critical recognition . Despite political ebb and flow, fickle artistic trends and film financing difficulties, he remains steadfast in his commitment to progressive ideals and a personal cinema. Loach's films are art of the highest order. While exposing the failings and limitations of human experience, they also provide a path to change and progress. His body of work firmly celebrates the fact that life is worth living.