Mike Leigh

Meantime

Meantime

A slow-burning depiction of economic degradation in Thatcher’s England, Mike Leigh’s Meantime is the culmination of the writer-director’s pioneering work in television. Unemployment is rampant in London’s working-class East End, where a middle-aged couple and their two sons languish in a claustrophobic public-housing flat. As the brothers (Phil Daniels and Tim Roth) grow increasingly disaffected, Leigh punctuates the grinding boredom of their daily existence with tense encounters, including with a priggish aunt (Marion Bailey) who has managed to become middle-class and a blithering skinhead on the verge of psychosis (a scene-stealing Gary Oldman, in his first major role). Informed by Leigh’s now trademark improvisational process and propelled by the lurching rhythms of its Beckett-like dialogue, Meantime is an unrelenting, often blisteringly funny look at life on the dole.

Film Info

  • Mike Leigh
  • United Kingdom
  • 1984
  • 107 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.66:1
  • English
  • Spine #890

Special Features

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION:

  • New, restored 2K digital transfer, supervised by director of pho­­tog­­raphy Roger Pratt and director Mike Leigh, with uncom­pressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New conversation between Leigh and musician Jarvis Cocker
  • New conversation between actor Marion Bailey and critic Amy Raphael
  • Interview from 2007 with actor Tim Roth
  • PLUS: An essay by film scholar Sean O’Sullivan

New cover by Anita Kunz

Purchase Options

Special Features

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION:

  • New, restored 2K digital transfer, supervised by director of pho­­tog­­raphy Roger Pratt and director Mike Leigh, with uncom­pressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New conversation between Leigh and musician Jarvis Cocker
  • New conversation between actor Marion Bailey and critic Amy Raphael
  • Interview from 2007 with actor Tim Roth
  • PLUS: An essay by film scholar Sean O’Sullivan

New cover by Anita Kunz

Meantime
Cast
Phil Daniels
Mark
Tim Roth
Colin
Marion Bailey
Barbara
Pam Ferris
Mavis
Jeff Robert
Frank
Gary Oldman
Coxy
Tilly Vosburgh
Hayley
Alfred Molina
John
Credits
Director
Mike Leigh
Produced by
Graham Benson
Director of photography
Roger Pratt
Editor
Lesley Walker
Art director
Diana Charnley
Sound recordist
Malcolm Hirst
Music composed by
Andrew Dickson
Music played by
Andrew Dickson
Music played by
George Khan
Costumes by
Lindy Hemming
Makeup artist
Sandra Shepherd

From The Current

Mike Leigh Remembers Britain’s TV Renaissance
Mike Leigh Remembers Britain’s TV Renaissance

Mike Leigh chats with rock musician Jarvis Cocker about his film Meantime and the role television played in fostering British film culture.

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Meantime: Margins and Centers
Meantime: Margins and Centers

In this unsparing drama, Mike Leigh captures the grim mood of Thatcher’s England through the frustrations of a working-class London family.

By Sean O’Sullivan

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