Rita, Sue, Bob, and a Success Too for the Town Cinema?

A look at Stalybridge Town Cinema’s third screening

Since the first and second screenings in July and August (Brassed Off and The Full Monty respectively), word of mouth and sustained publicity on social media has kept Greater Manchester’s second newest cinema in the public eye. Tomorrow [22 September 2015] night’s film will be Rita, Sue and Bob Too.

Situated in 1980s Bradford, it shows two sides of the city. One, the affluent part (Baildon, where they may have endorsed Eric Pickles’ revolution, later demonstrated by the ConDems from 2010). Another, the impoverished part dogged by mass unemployment (which is The Boulevard council estate in Buttershaw).

To raise extra cash, Rita (Siobhan Finneran) and Sue (Michelle Holmes – later Tina Fowler in Coronation Street) do some babysitting for Bob (George Costigan) and his wife, Michelle (Lesley Sharp, whom we saw in last month’s showing of The Full Monty). As well as payment for babysitting, the two high school students get a lift home from Bob.

On their lifts back home, our twosome have a fling with Bob. Bob becomes a sexual partner to Rita and Sue. The rest as they say… as billed on the posters, “Thatcher’s Britain with her knickers down”.

The film is based on Andrea Dunbar’s 1982 play with the same name and The Arbor, from 1980. Thanks to funding and distribution from the Channel Four Corporation, it was released on the 29 May 1987. Rita, Sue and Bob Too was directed by Alan Clarke, whose other credits include Scum (BBC Play For Today, 1977; feature film, 1979) and The Firm (1989).

Next month’s film

Bookings are being taken for Little Voice, which will be shown on the 20 October 2015. Once again a 7.30pm start. Based on Jim Cartwright’s play, The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, the film is centred around Laura (aka Little Voice played by Jane Horrocks), her domineering mother (Brenda Blethyn) and talent scout Ray Say (Michael Caine).

L.V.’s talent for mimicking Marilyn Monroe and Gracie Fields isn’t lost on her pushy mother who hears her singing to a collection of records from her deceased father. With Ray Say, she tries to get her singing at Mr Boo’s club and attracting the attention of London talent scouts.

The film is largely set in Scarborough. As with Mark Herman’s previous film shown at the Town Cinema, it is one that’ll get you laughing and crying with equal measure. One other thing, don’t blame the fellows at Stalybridge Town Cinema nor yours truly, the author of this piece if Sing As We Go does your head in!

As with tomorrow’s showing, this too wont going to clash with any of Stalybridge Celtic’s evening fixtures.

Useful Information

Tickets priced at £4.00 for all classes.

Stalybridge Town Cinema:
8 Corporation Street, Stalybridge, Cheshire, SK15 2BN.

  • Ticket Sales: available via http://www.stalybridgetown.com, on the night at the door, or from local shops;
  • Buses: most services stop at Armentieres Square nearby. 408 service terminates at bus station (5 – 7 minutes walk along Market Street, Melbourne Street and Corporation Street). No journeys on the 236, 387, 353 and 354 services after 1900 hours;
  • Trains: Stalybridge railway station is 10 – 12 minutes walk (Market Street, Melbourne Street and Corporation Street);
  • Taxis: Swift Radio Cars is the nearest taxi office to Judge’s Bar.

S.V., 21 September 2015.

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