Barry Hines’ story has shaped generations both in book form -Barry Hines’ A Kestral For a Knave -and as Ken Loach’s film, Kes. Now on a re-release 42 years after first coming onto the screen, the movie -which is in the British Film Insitute’s top ten films to see before the age of 14 -seems even more poignant.
Kes is being shown at the Barn Theatre, Dartington as part of the Interrogate! social just festival. The poster for the film (not the one where he’s flicking the Vs up -which doesn’t actually happen in the film) says: “They beat him. They deprived him. They ridiculed him. They broke his heart, but they couldn’t break his spirit.”
Not without its moments of touching vulnerability or genuine comedy, the movie, one of the great British films, is worth watching or a re-look if it’s a few years since you’ve seen it.
Here’s the trailer