‘Things can only get better...’
Comedies of class, culture and community
in Tears of laughter
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This chapter presents the case studies of Brassed Off and The Full Monty. It explores some of the important critical and commercial issues raised by the observations of Mark Herman and Simon Beaufoy, in relation to the willingness of both films to create humorous and comically absurd moments in each film. In an essay entitled 'The Social Art Cinema: a Moment in the History of British Film and Television Culture', Christopher Williams concluded that British cinema's interest in notions of community and society constitutes what our national cinema 'has been and is good at doing'. Two seminal comedy-dramas, The Man in the White Suit and I'm All Right Jack were also influential for the ways in which they probed the 'state of the nation' by satirising relationships between management and labour in British society at the beginning and end of the 1950s.

Tears of laughter

Comedy-drama in 1990s British cinema

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