Saturday, 5 September 2015

Film: The History Boys at Square Chapel for the Arts, Halifax- 5th September 2015

Square Chapel for the Arts in Halifax is screening films in its debut season and an addition to the exciting programme of events which the centre is reputed for.  Their aim is to reach out to a diverse audience with its programme including a wide range of films.  

The History Boys is written by Alan Bennett' and the film is adapted in 2006 from the National Theatre's production.  It is based at the fictional Cutlers' Grammar School in Sheffield during the 1980s.  It is about a class of boys who have sat their 'A' Levels and are staying an extra term with an aim of getting into the coveted Oxford University.

The boys have the tutelage of three teachers whose teaching styles could not be any more different from Hector's (Richard Griffiths) enthusiastic knowledge of the arts, citing that “all knowledge is precious”  to Irwin's (Stephen Campbell Moore) inflexible and target driven teaching.  Both teachers consequently face issues of their sexuality which brings threatened chaos to the headmaster (Felix Armstrong) and supposedly the school with regards to targets and reputation.  In the mix there is the liberal and plain talking Mrs Lintott (Frances De La Tour) whose feelings are known in the history's adversity.

Irwin, in particular, is lost with what the boys' quests are and it isn't solely on just passing the examinations. Each pupil has its unique personalities and desires which are summarised in and out of the classroom from evaluating their educational expectations particularly Dakin (Dominic Cooper), Posner (Samuel Barnett), Timms (James Corden) and Rudge (Russell Tovey).  The film doesn't compromise Bennett's authorial presence and his playwright skills shines with its humour, double meanings, indirectness, innuendoes and metaphoric language and questions negatively and positively the educational system, past and present, and the relevant sociological issues. 

The History Boys has something for everyone and it isn't limited to just education! An excellent classic starring a group of talented actors and the film is highly recommended!

No comments:

Post a Comment