Hope and Glory

Overview

An affectionate reverie about war, childhood, and British stoicism, John Boorman's Hope and Glory is the veteran filmmaker's recollection of the bombing of London during World War II. Set on the British home front during the early days of the war, this episodic movie shows the blitz through the eyes of seven-year-old Billy Rohan Sebastian Rice-Edwards. At the war's outset, Billy finds himself alone in a house full of women, as all the men are called off to join the war effort. With wide-eyed wonder and an ...
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Overview

An affectionate reverie about war, childhood, and British stoicism, John Boorman's Hope and Glory is the veteran filmmaker's recollection of the bombing of London during World War II. Set on the British home front during the early days of the war, this episodic movie shows the blitz through the eyes of seven-year-old Billy Rohan Sebastian Rice-Edwards. At the war's outset, Billy finds himself alone in a house full of women, as all the men are called off to join the war effort. With wide-eyed wonder and an outsized imagination, Billy sees the war as a grand diversion, an extension of his world of knights, tin soldiers, and war games. As bombs fall and houses burn, Billy's mother Sarah Miles struggles to keep the family together in her husband's absence. Even as Billy seeks to escape the harem of aunts and sisters, Dawn Sammi Davis, his older sister, falls for a Canadian soldier, who gets her pregnant. After the Rohans' home catches fire not, ironically, as the result of a bomb blast, but from a domestic accident, the family is forced to move in with Billy's cantankerous grandfather in the countryside, where they spend the rest of their summer and enjoy an unusual idyll amid the raging war. Nominated in 1987 for a Best Picture Academy Award, Hope and Glory proved to be another high point in the career of the remarkably protean Boorman. ~ Elbert Ventura
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
The effects of World War II on Britain are recalled with bittersweet nostalgia in this beguiling, richly textured film produced, written, and directed by John Boorman Deliverance. Barely nine years old when his family hears a broadcast announcing the commencement of hostilities, the Boorman character played by the delightfully unassuming Sebastian Rice-Edwards sees the conflict as a grand adventure. His working-class parents Sarah Miles and David Hayman display unexpected courage and fortitude, and in the midst of the war the family manages to spend a fairly idyllic summer at the home of grandparents Ian Bannen and Annie Leon. Boorman's evocative film is loosely plotted but lovingly detailed; his re-creation of London during the Blitz is painstakingly accurate, not only in a physical sense but also emotionally and psychologically. High drama rears its portentous head on occasion, but much of Hope and Glory focuses on both the day-to-day banalities associated with wartime hardship and the occasional diversions that relieved family tensions and renewed the spirit. Considerably more sweet and funny than its backdrop might suggest, Hope and Glory is also a moving, memorable tribute to the indomitable will of the British people.
All Movie Guide - Karl Williams
A superlative memoir of life in London during World War II from the unique perspective of a child, this ravishing drama from writer/director John Boorman is his thinly veiled autobiography and an essential work from his canon, arguably his single most important film. Much has been made of the film's fine performances, and they are indeed unforgettable, with young Sebastian Rice-Edwards suitably wide-eyed and vigorous as the hero, and Sammi Davis and Ian Bannen turning in career-high work as the main character's trampy sister and eccentric grandfather, respectively. What makes Hope and Glory 1987 a truly remarkable picture, however, is Boorman's keenly remembered, written, and re-created sense of a child's perception and how the mechanics of the adult world intrude upon it. Shifts in tone and mood occur rapid-fire at times, moving from such extremes as horror to humor to wonder in the same scene, as the filmmaker recalls the instant fluctuations of temperament and feeling that wash through a boy, particularly one subjected to the sensory overload of the London Blitz. When the film moves in its third act to a genteel country home where safety is found with a protective overseer, the change is jarring, but intentionally so. Presenting war as a joy and a thrill is an audacious act of artistic honesty and sets Hope and Glory 1987 in the same category as the same year's similarly underrated, under-seen Empire of the Sun 1987.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/5/2001
  • UPC: 883904126829
  • Original Release: 1987
  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sebastian Rice-Edwards Bill Rohan
Sarah Miles Grace Rohan
David Hayman Clive Rohan
Derrick O'Connor Mac
Susan Wooldridge Molly
Sammi Davis Dawn Rohan
Ian Bannen George
Jean-Marc Barr Cpl. Bruce Carey
Anne Leon Bill's Grandmother
Amelda Brown Hope
Jill Baker Faith
Katrine Boorman Charity
Geraldine Muir Sue Rohan
Nicky Taylor Roger
Gerald James Headmaster
Sara Langton Pauline
Barbara Pierson Teacher
Charley Boorman Luftwaffe Pilot
William Armstrong Canadian Sergeant
Nicholas Askew
Andrew Bicknell Honeymoon Couple
John Boorman Voice Only
Susan Brown Mrs. Evans
Imogen Cawrse Jennifer
Arthur Cox Fireman
Christine Crowshaw Pianist
Colin Dale Roger's Gang
Shelagh Fraser WVS Woman
Colin Higgins Clive's Friend
Peter Hughes Policeman
Ann Thornton Honeymoon Couple
Technical Credits
John Boorman Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Andy Armstrong Asst. Director
Paul Ciani Producer
Mike Collins Special Effects
Ian Crafford Editor
Don Dossett Art Director
Anna Dryhurst Makeup
Michael Dryhurst Co-producer
Jake Eberts Executive Producer
Rodney Fuller Special Effects
Edgar Gross Executive Producer
Peter Handford Sound/Sound Designer
Peter J. Martin Score Composer, Musical Direction/Supervision
Anthony Pratt Production Designer
Philippe Rousselot Cinematographer
Shirley Russell Costumes/Costume Designer
Mary Selway Casting
Phil Stokes Special Effects
Anthony Van Laast Choreography
Joanne Woollard Set Decoration/Design
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