Kes | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Kes 

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In 1969 Ken Loach took time out from an acclaimed television career to direct this quietly powerful narrative feature, a classic of British social realism. Based on a novel by Barry Hines but shot like a documentary, with a hardscrabble industrial setting and a cast that blends professionals and amateurs, the film tracks an introverted Yorkshire lad (David Bradley) who's abandoned by his father and bullied by his coal-miner brother (Freddie Fletcher). A failure in the classroom and on the soccer pitch alike, the boy finds his wings when he adopts and trains a fledgling kestrel. Working in the style of cinema verite, cinematographer Chris Menges captures the petty tyrannies of the provincial working class and the inchoate joys of a youngster stumbling toward the greater world. DVD projection. 113 min. Wed 7/19, 6 PM, Chicago Cultural Center. Free.

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