About the film
Director: Mike Leigh
Actors: Maxine Peake, Rory Kinnear, Neil Bell, Philip JacksonAcclaimed writer/director and seven-time Oscar nominee Mike Leigh (Mr. Turner, Vera Drake) directs the story of the godawful massacre at St. Peter’s Field in Manchester when the British military cut down poor laboring families peacefully rallying in support of just representation in Parliament.
Written and directed by Leigh, and starring esteemed stage and screen thespian Rory Kinnear (recently seen playing Tanner in Bond outings Skyfall and Spectre) and Maxine Peake (The Theory of Everything), PETERLOO is an epic portrayal of the events surrounding the infamous 1819 massacre, which became one of the most notorious episodes in British history. The fateful day saw British government forces charge into a crowd of over 60,000 that had gathered to demand political reform and protest against rising levels of poverty. Sparking a nationwide outcry but also further government suppression, Peterloo was a defining moment in British democracy which also played a significant role in the founding of The Guardian newspaper.
Against the backdrop of cinematographer Dick Pope’s striking Manchester/Lancashire canvas, the film weaves multiple stories of everyday people into a socialist tapestry and depicts an act of police brutality with huge contemporary relevance. Rousing and incendiary, this is a major work of cinema.
WINNER: Human Rights Network Award – Special Mention, Venice Film Festival 2018
NOMINATED: Golden Lion – Best Film, Venice Film Festival 2018
OFFICIAL SELECTION: Special Presentation, BFI London Film Festival 2018
OFFICIAL SELECTION: Toronto International Film Festival 2018