Billy Elliot (Widescreen) product details page

Billy Elliot (Widescreen)

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The debut feature of acclaimed stage director Stephen Daldry, this effortlessly charming yet entirely familiar coming-of-age story follows along the same lines as such U.S. imports as The Full Monty and Waking Ned Devine, but with a heartfelt ardor all its own. The film rarely strays from its wistful sensibilities, but features ample compensation in its astute casting (newcomer Jamie Bell is a marvelously natural young find) and Daldry's amiable handling of both the title character's dancing ambitions, as well as the backdrop for the main story, northern England's chaotic mining strike of the 1980s. Overall, Billy Elliot is a difficult film to resist, even if it doesn't genuinely surprise. A momentous hit in Britain, the film's irresistible desire to please proves utterly winning in the long run. Interestingly, the film premiered at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival as Dancer, but so as not to be confused with Lars von Trier's highly publicized, Palme d'Or-winning entry of the same year, the filmmakers decided to permanently change Billy Elliot's title for its U.S. release. Jason Clark, All Movie Guide