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Leather Boys Movie Review

dot life reggie pete

Before he moved to America in 1966, Sidney J. Furie (The Ipcress File) was considered a remarkable director, and 1963's The Leather Boys represents some of his finest work. This thoughtful film is an interesting study of latent homosexuality clashing against the more conventional life envisioned by Rita Tushingham as a young bride named Dot. Dot is in love with a biker named Reggie (Colin Campbell) who, prior to his marriage, spent most of his time hanging out with his best friend Pete (Dudley Sutton). Domestic life quickly takes its toll on Dot and Reggie as he turns more and more to Pete to relieve the crushingly familiar routine of adult life. Dot, too, finds herself forced into playing an increasingly unattractive role in Reggie's life, basically because she doesn't know what else to do. As their relationship founders, Dot suspects that Reggie and Pete may have more in common than their passion for motorcycles. It's all very understated and bittersweet, in common with many “kitchen sink” Brit flicks of the late ‘50s and early ‘60s. Yet the superb performances and Furie's gritty approach to Gillian Freeman's sensitive screenplay give The Leather Boys a unique quality that resonates far beyond the obvious title and inevitable conclusion.

1963 103m/C GB Rita Tushingham, Dudley Sutton, Gladys Henson, Colin Campbell, Avice Landon, Lockwood West, Betty Marsden, Johnny Briggs, Geoffrey Dunn, Dandy Nichols; D: Sidney J. Furie; W: Gillian Freeman; C: Gerald Gibbs. VHS

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