The cinematically and aesthetically beautiful British film, Pride, deals with serious matters in uplifting ways. The film is based on a true story about the British miners’ strike that occurred in 1984. It was directed by Matthew Warchus and centers around the gay community as they try to bring attention to the miners and their own rights as working class citizens. Pride engages the audience in an enjoyable and entertaining manner and reveals the raw emotion that was experienced during that time.
The complexity within Pride is derived from the multiple issues that are entailed. The film mainly surrounds the 1984 British miners’ strike and homosexuality but also incorporates the AIDS crisis that took place during this time. It illustrates the struggle of the overall crisis through Ben Schnetzer’s character, Mark Ashton. While Ashton is struggling with AIDS, he becomes the catalyst of the LGBT activist group, Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners. The group raises money for the miners and their families living in Wales. Both the miners and the LGBT group face the common struggle of overcoming hegemony and end up conjoining to fight for their natural human rights. Ashton’s dedication and determination shows how passionate he is about the cause, as well as his refusal to let AIDS stand in his way from achieving his goal.
Schnetzer gave an outstanding performance through his expressive ambition. His character is persistent on receiving donations for their cause. He believes the miners deserve the money because they need people to support their cause. Ashton argues that they are struggling with social discrimination similar to how the gay community is struggling with the issue. In the beginning of the film, when the strike of the miners has emerged, Ashton says, “If anybody knows what this treatment feels like it’s us.” His motivation to do the right thing is what makes his character so inspiring. Schnetzer encompasses the role through this dramatic acting and contributes to the powerful message Pride conveys of coming together for a larger cause.
Not only was Schnetzer’s performance a significant factor for the film’s critical acclaim, but the cinematography was as well. The cinematography expresses the openness of both communities and how they conjoin together to peacefully protest against the injustices held against them. The wide shots throughout Pride, especially in the shots in the final scene of the parade, outline the important spatial aspects between the masses of the miners and LGBT communities. The color palette present within the final scene is bright and warm in which the costumes and setting is encompassed of colors of the gay pride flag. The combination of the cinematography and the film’s use of color contribute to the aesthetic beauty of the film.
Pride is an enlightening story of overcoming oppression and rising above life struggles. It enriches the audience’s perspective on the controversial topics that are presented. The film demonstrates to the audience that we, as humans, have a voice and need to use it as a tool to advance toward a more equal worldly society.