"Mike Leigh's most lavish canvas, his most politically charged, his most electric epic... an uncompromising, uncompromised masterpiece: in ravishing moment after ravaging moment" - NPR

Manchester, 1819: a period of famine after the Napoleonic Wars leads to increasing radicalism among working people. Their demands for reform horrify the authorities, leading to the violent suppression of a major demonstration at St Peter’s Field.

“Full of thunderous passions, Mike Leigh’s urgent grassroots epic about an infamous 1819 massacre of peaceful protesters by cavalry is a whole lot of movie. Peterloo is meticulously crafted, every scene drawing you in with precise period detail and full-bore performances from its ensemble cast, and it powers through great slabs of British social history, finding contemporary relevance every step of the way. The iniquity of the Corn Laws, the struggle for the vote and the birth of England’s Reformist movement are all covered off en route to the violent climax we know is coming.

“Mostly bloodless but still gut-churningly visceral, the scene in St Peter’s Field is terrifying and traumatic, yet in its aftermath oddly hopeful. From the panicked faces of the watching magistrates, it’s clear that the violence they’ve unleashed will only speed the change the protesters crave. It’s an optimistic note at the end of a serious-minded, sombre movie.” - Time Out


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