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The Angry Silence PG rating

Richard Attenborough plays a factory worker who’s ostracised after refusing to support a strike, in this gritty industrial drama.

Drama 1959 95 mins

Director: Guy Green



When factory worker Tom Curtis (Richard Attenborough), married with two kids and another on the way, refuses to support an unofficial strike, he finds himself shunned by his colleagues - and even his best friend.

Written and co-produced (with Attenborough) by Bryan Forbes as the first release of his production venture, Beaver Films, The Angry Silence can be seen as a British variant on the industrial drama of On the Waterfront (1954). But with its gritty depiction of working-class homes and factory life, there are also shades of the British New Wave ushered in by Karel Reisz's Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, released later the same year. The nuanced and naturalistic performance from Attenborough (who’d previously sent up labour relations in I’m All Right Jack) is one of many notable qualities in a film that offers a fascinating preview of the anti-union paranoia that would define the following two decades.