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The Old Oak, a local pub, stands as the last community gathering place in an impoverished town in the north of England – one which never recovered from the demise of the mining industry. Here we meet publican TJ who is struggling to make ends meet. Things change when an influx of Syrian refugees fuels xenophobic backlash across the township, TJ is ready to step up and help the newcomers as best he can, much to the annoyance of some of his regulars.
From revered filmmaker Ken Loach this moving melodrama penned by regular screenwriter Paul Laverty (I Am Daniel Blake; Sorry We Missed You) takes place in 2016 offering an attempt to wrestle with the implications of the Brexit referendum. Supported by a solid ensemble cast, Loach continues a career long examination of social and human rights issues. Rumoured to be the 87-year-old director’s final film, Loach delivers The Old Oak with a heartfelt narrative ruminating on the power of acceptance and community. Finding embers of hope in acts of courage, kindness, and solidarity. It is a plain and honest reflection of a time of discord and division.
NOMINEE – Palme d’Or, Cannes Film Festival 2023
WINNER – Audience Award, Locarno International Film Festival 2023
"A ringing statement of faith in compassion for the oppressed."
- The Guardian
Wednesday 1st November
Dave Turner, Elba Mari, Claire Rodgerson, Trevor Fox, Chris McGlade, Col Tait, Jordan Louis, Chrissie Robsinson