Saturday Night and Sunday Morning

Saturday Night and Sunday Morning

classified PG

Working Class Heroes: British Working Class on Film


Please note: This was screened in Sept 2018

Karel Reisz
Albert Finney, Shirley Anne Field, Rachel Roberts
89 mins, 1960, UK
Primary language

Albert Finney stars as a Nottingham factory worker railing against authority whilst his tangled love life lands him in trouble, in this seminal 1960s social realist drama that was the first to put working-class life on screen, bluntly, with respect and without condescension.

Arthur Seaton (Finney) works his factory shift in a mindless haze, but his weekends are even more muddled due to his love affairs and his alcohol problem. One of the women Arthur is involved with, Brenda (Rachel Roberts), is married to his co-worker, but pregnant with Arthur's child. Arthur, meanwhile, is also pursuing Doreen (Shirley Anne Field) but is soon enough found out by Brenda, who wants money or an abortion, leaving Arthur finding himself at a crossroads.

Acting as both a social document (much of it was shot in real Nottingham locations, presenting a vanished world of factories, cobbles and cramped back-to-back houses) this cherished work of British cinema was a true ground breaker. It’s also hugely quotable with gems like "Don't let the bastards grind you down", "I'm out for a good time – all the rest is propaganda” and "Whatever people say I am, that's what I'm not" all still ringing true for both cinema (and Arctic Monkeys fans) alike.