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Unemployment in Sheffield has an unusual effect on six men, who are in various stages of depression and/or confusion about their lives. They had all worked at the steel mill, now shut down. A visiting troupe of male strippers, which attracts hundreds of women all paying £10, prompts Gaz (Carlyle) to suggest to his friends-in-woe that they could themselves clean up with a strip show of their own - unlikely bodies notwithstanding. Gaz has a special need to find £700 to catch up on his maintenance payments so he can see his 13 year old son. Gerald (Wilkinson), once their foreman and the old geezer of the group, takes on the role of strip coach. Reluctantly, they flubber towards the night, almost abandoning the gig until they learn that 200 tickets had been sold. With a mix of determination and desperation, they head for the hall, where they feel bound to go the full monty.

"This exploration of the human spirit takes a group of unlikely candidates on a journey of self-discovery through difficult times. Canvassing their insecurities (emotional and physical), the experiences of the characters make The Full Monty a bittersweet film - moving, sad and funny, as it takes a good sharp look at the male culture left behind by closure of the Sheffield steelworks, which cut men out of their comfortable role of breadwinner. The fact that the cast was selected for its physical appearance as well as considerable acting talents, adds greatly to the ambience of the film, as thin, fat, long and older together make up a melting pot of potential insecurities and hang ups. Robert Carlyle is eminently watchable, and brings his own style of magic to Gaz, the part-time father fighting for survival and the acceptance of his son. While not traditionally handsome, Carlyle has a screen presence and a certain enigmatic charisma. The entire cast is strong with a poignant performance from Mark Addy as Dave, the overweight, impotent security guard, who goes to desperate measures to curb his insecurities. The unusual solution offered to the unemployment problem, requires considerable courage and clearly shows how the spirit can soar when given a spark of encouragement or hope. With an infectious music score featuring some lively tunes, The Full Monty starts slowly, fully establishing characters and environment before blossoming into the realms of dare, when it spreads its wings into full flight for what is to come and the Tom Jones rendition of ‘You can leave your hat on’."
Louise Keller

"A story of the unlikely doing the undressing is in the tradition of films like the one about young men from an African village going for gold as a bob sledge team in snowbound Canada. (In the Irish version, The Van, two unemployed blokes get an abandoned van and sell fish and chips.) The lead up to the event makes the film: we meet the contenders and their neuroses, we discover their plight (in this case unemployment and its socio-emotional aftermath) and we barrack for them because doing a strip for a crowd of women - unaccustomed as they are - means they will have overcome at least some of their problems. For an evening, at any rate. Will it change their lives? Will they find more permanent solutions? We don’t know. Arriving with much praise from festivals, The Full Monty is an enjoyable and amusing English film, an adept blend of pathos, humour, drama and fun. Even though it sags a bit in the middle, there is enough sharp observation of character to keep it going, and the three men whose lives we explore more closely can be seen as examples of manhood in disarray. In that respect, the film reaches for more meaning than it would seem on the surface reading of a group of ugly ducklings parading as a swans. Every one of the cast plays it for real, to their credit, and they bravely go the full monty emotionally, as well as physically."
Andrew L. Urban

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CAST: Robert Carlyle, Tom Wilkinson, Mark Addy, Lesley Sharp, Emily Woof, Steve Huison, Paul Barber, Hugo Speer, Deirdre Costello, Bruce Jones, William Snape

PRODUCER: Uberto Pasolini

DIRECTOR: Peter Cattaneo

SCRIPT: Simon Beaufoy


EDITOR: Nick Moore, Dave Freeman

MUSIC: Anne Dudley


RUNNING TIME: 92 minutes



AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: October 16, 1997



RRP: $24.95

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