Open Access Articles- Top Results for Meantime (film)

Meantime (film)

Directed by Mike Leigh
Produced by Graham Benson
Written by Mike Leigh
Starring Tim Roth
Phil Daniels
Gary Oldman
Cinematography Roger Pratt
Edited by Lesley Walker
Release dates
Running time
112 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English

Meantime is a 1983 film directed by Mike Leigh, produced by Central Television for Channel 4. It was shown at the London Film Festival in 1983 and on Channel 4 a few weeks later, on 1 December. According to the critic Michael Coveney: "The sapping, debilitating and demeaning state of unemployment, the futile sense of waste, has not been more poignantly, or poetically, expressed in any other film of the period."[1] It marked Gary Oldman's feature film debut.

The film details the travails of a working-class family in London's East End, struggling to stay afloat during the recession under Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's premiership. Only the mother Mavis (Pam Ferris) is working; father Frank (Jeff Robert) and the couple's two sons Colin (Tim Roth), a timid, chronically shy individual and Mark (Phil Daniels), an outspoken, headstrong young man, are on the dole. This situation is contrasted by the presence of Mavis's sister Barbara (Marion Bailey), and her husband John (Alfred Molina), whose financial and social loftiness, in suburban Chigwell, appears to be a comfortable facade over the unspoken soreness of a lacklustre marriage.


Filming locations


One day at the rehearsal space, a factory in Homerton, Roth and Oldman were throwing a milk bottle around. Suddenly Roth threw it up and it hit a fluorescent lighting strip. Leigh saw "...Gary's shaven head erupt into a thousand red blotches; in the film you can see the stitch marks." He rushed Oldman to hospital. "As I drove him there, all done up in his skinhead stuff, covered in blood, Gary said to me, "For fuck's sake, tell 'em I'm an actor!" He could easily have lost his eyesight in the accident, and I do not know to this day what I would have done if that had happened." [2]


  1. ^ Michael Coveney, The World according to Mike Leigh, p.174
  2. ^ Coveney, p.176

External links

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