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VenueWalter Reade Theater
An episodic comic drama originally produced for Britain’s Channel 4, Meantime centers on the Pollocks, an East End–dwelling working-class family trying to keep the lights on amid the recession during Thatcher’s premiership. Mavis (Pam Ferris) works while her ornery husband Frank (Jeff Robert) and their sons Colin (Tim Roth) and Mark (Phil Daniels) collect unemployment; meanwhile, Mavis’s sister Barbara (Marion Bailey) and her husband (Alfred Molina) enjoy the comforts of life in the comparatively posh suburb of Chigwell. We follow the characters across a host of familiar settings—pubs, flats, the unemployment office—as they just try to get by, with Leigh deftly interweaving these scenes to produce a dimensional and sobering portrait of the indignities of life on the dole. 2K Restoration. A Janus Films release.
The Short and Curlies
Mike Leigh, 1987, UK, 17m
A woman (Alison Steadman) navigates a romance with a man (David Thewlis) who never ceases cracking jokes, while also reporting back on it to her adoring hairdresser mother. A Janus Films release.