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Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten40%
IMDb Rating5.910712

gay character

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN


Top cast

Judi Dench Photo
Judi Dench as Mary Moss
David Bradley Photo
David Bradley as Joe Colman
Jennifer Saunders Photo
Jennifer Saunders as Sister Gilpin
Russell Tovey Photo
Russell Tovey as Colin Colman
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
911.92 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 39 min
P/S 7 / 49
1.83 GB
English 5.1
23.976 fps
1 hr 39 min
P/S 11 / 49

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by gazmar627 / 10

Dying to help the NHS ?

Maybe TIFF wasn't the best place to launch this very British film based on a play ?

The NHS ( National Health Service) is shown in a microcosm of political and cynical struggles in a small community hospital unit for old people needing special care.

It's very Alan Bennett, although with short but still cutting monologues , some are funnier than others but all serve a purpose.

The geriatric ward is the logical place to highlight the old and decrepit hospital system, fighting for survival at death's door, but there are more metaphors here, the NHS is killing people due to a lack of resources, most notably a shortage of beds, is there even a shortage of carers?.

Jennifer Saunders is great as the head nurse trying her best to keep a 'clean' ward, but working to targets for turnover of patients and moving them through the system comes at a heavy price, closure is imminent and her efficiency is not enough.

The doctor is stereotypical, an Asian immigrant with a nostalgic true vocational outlook to care for his patients with a hands on approach.

The patients are a who's who of British stalwart actors and they are very convincing as geriatrics, each representing the problems within the health care system. One patient's son happens to be a management consultant for the government's health minister and getting a personal experience of the hospital suggests the need for 'government' to understand the real world of this care in the community, rather than just facts and figures on spreadsheets, it's a political statement about how things are failing people by going for large scale centres of excellence?.

As a person with a lot of personal experience of the NHS and getting old too, I can relate to the representation if not actually recognise the geriatric care unit.

The film takes a risky turn or two near the end especially with a plea for support and understanding of the caring people who work in the NHS providing a public service, which is now underappreciated again post pandemic, although ironically with the recent strike action this has probably not helped their case.

This is bound to be a divisive film and some may be disappointed by it's change in tone from comedy to politics, especially if they don't understand the British system or the metaphors about it.

Reviewed by dorothybishop-129115 / 10

Excellent acting but flaky plot

On the positive side, the acting was great. I particularly liked Jennifer Saunders' portrayal of a dedicated, no-nonsense ward sister, and David Bradley's retired miner. The underlying message of the threat to the NHS by those that don't understand its core values is an important one. But this film was not the way to make that point.

Although, as you'd expect with a strong cast, the acting was great, many of the characters were tediously stereotyped: the charming Asian doctor who 'loved old people', the bubbly, enthusiastic nurse, a range of old people who used Alan Bennett one-liners to establish themselves as sweetly eccentric, away with the fairies, or curmudgeonly in a loveable way. You could tell just by the body language that the children of an old lady were up to no good and just wanted to fleece her. The son of the miner who had gone South to forge a successful career as a management consultant was predictably transformed from an over-confident critic of the hospital to a supporter.

The setting was not so much stereotyped as confusing. The threatened hospital did have one doctor, one nurse, a sister, and a physiotherapist, and some of the patients were sick - indeed the plot hinged on a character who was worried that if he improved he'd be sent back to a nursing home. But most of the activities that we saw suggested that the institution was a care home - the old people seemed to be long-term residents and were well enough to shuffle around doing craft activities and reminiscence therapy. A film crew from the local paper were drifting around interviewing residents. It was as if the original intention was to make a film about a care home, but they then realised that if they wanted the message to be about the NHS, they needed to make it into a hospital.

I won't include spoilers but just to say that just when you think this is going to be a totally saccharine experience, where the struggling hospital will be saved from closure, there is a plot twist that acts like a hand grenade in derailing all expectations. It might have worked if the rest of the film had been more believable, but it seemed totally unsatisfactory in the context of the rest of the film.

And then, at the end we have bolted on a section where the nice doctor is now in a covid ward, making a heartfelt plea for the continuation of the NHS, while showing devastating scenes of patients in corridors, and exhausted staff in PPE struggling to cope. I found myself wishing that Ken Loach had made a film on this theme: that would have been far more effective than this clunky treatment.

Reviewed by Lomax3439 / 10

Touching, Affecting and Twisty

There are some plot twists you can see coming a mile off. There are many films where you know a twist is coming, even if you don't know what it'll be. Allelujah is a film where you don't realise there's going to be a twist t all, never mind one so vicious.

Set in a small, crumbling hospital earmarked for closure, and which mostly deals with geriatric patients, Allelujah starts out as a classic Little Guy vs Government Machine story. There's much that is poignant, and much that is comic and there are fine performances throughout, particularly from Jennifer Saunders, David Bradley and Derek Jacobi.

Then, just when the bureaucrat seems set for a big change of heart and the audience senses the feel-good ending, the rug's pulled out from under them completely. It's both devastating and unforgettable.

Dr Valentine's final piece to camera is magnificent, as he says the things that *need* to be said.

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