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4.1 out of 5 stars153
4.1 out of 5 stars
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Showing 1-10 of 27 reviews(4 star). Show all reviews
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 28 March 2011
I read a review of The Football Factory that said the characters are so "orrible" and "hateful" it was impossible to like them at all! You have to think that that particular reviewer knows nothing about the subject matter of the film he was writing about. Does he think that hoards of footie hooligans, who delight in knocking seven bells of tar out of each other, want to be liked?

The Football Factory is directed by Nick Love and based on the book of the same name written by John King. It stars Danny Dyer {who else really?}, Frank Harper, Neil Maskell and Tamer Hassan {Hassan fans should note he's rarely in it tho}. The story is about what was termed The English Disease, a disease where like minded adults from various walks of life, religiously took to fighting like minded adults, in the name of what football team they happened to support. There's been a ream of books written on the subject, from those involved and by those who haven't a clue outside of reading their Sunday Times articles back in the day. There's also been one or two films about the subject, from pretty ace efforts like Phillip Davis' ID, to middling tellings such as Elijah Wood starrer Green Street. It's a subject that people seem hell bent on dissecting and attempting to get to the bottom of.

So with that in mind, Love's movie is something of a triumph in that it tries the hardest to understand its topic. To those on the outside of football hooliganism, it looks like a bunch of blokes mindlessly inflicting harm on each other whilst simultaneously damaging the good name of the national sport. But Love, with help from King's source, explores ego led tribalism, male bonding, male conformity and dissatisfaction of life in general. Throw in the punches and a ream of genuine laughs and you got a film that is easy to like if you belong to a certain demographic. Here is the problem if you are not a geezer, a tribal footie fan or a mindless thug, The Football Factory holds no appeal to the casual observer, which is a shame, because as stated previously, it's trying hard to reason and understand. There's for instance a cracking plot-strand involving two old fella's, Tommy's {Dyer} granddad Bill {Dudley Sutton} & Albert {John Junkin}. Both lifelong pals who have grown tired of what "their" Britain has become, thus they are in the process of emigrating to Australia. This dovetails smartly with the unfolding story of football violence perpetrated by the kids of the day. Generational differences? Perhaps, maybe?

The cast are strong, either fitting the mean profile perfectly {Harper/Hassan} or delivering the needed cocky swagger line {Dyer}, Love has assembled, what is for the material at hand, the perfect cast. OK we probably could have done with Vinnie Jones or Ross Kemp in there somewhere, but it's a low budget movie you know! The fight scenes are grim and look authentic and the soundtrack rocks the large one too. So is it glamorising a touchy subject? Well yes it is, if you are a football hooligan yourself that is. It's not a perfect film by any stretch of the imagination, but it has good intentions in there, even if not all of them are fully realised. To which it leaves us with an impacting, intriguing and uneasily enjoyable movie. 7.5/10
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on 22 December 2004
Adapted from John King's novel, The Football Factory is an entertaining blend of Snatch, Trainspotting and the episode of Grange Hill where the boys organise a fight with another school.
The story concentrates on three members of the infamous Chelsea Headhunter's 'firm', who use their team's matches as an excuse to brawl with rival pseudo-supporters; narrator and stereotypical twenty-something lad Tommy, mockney hardman Billy and repugnant rat-boy Zebedee (so-called because he likes 'white powder').
Although Tommy enjoys the adrenaline-rush of fighting, he's plagued by visions of a serious beating and starts to question whether the lifestyle is 'worth it'. Along with friend Rod, he's inadvertently upset several Millwall fans, just when the FC Cup has pitched the two teams, and thus their firms, against each other.
All the staples of British film are evident; the insightful voiceover, pumping Britpop soundtrack and defiance of social-conformity (jobs and girlfriends are for losers, etc). Token comedy moments are provided by two drug-addicted pensioners and a hilariously blinkered, Hoxton-like portrayal of Liverpool (apparently just a deserted wasteland, consisting of five scallies and a burned-out car).
The hooligans are portrayed as surprisingly intelligent, misunderstood people, embodying the brave, noble spirit of St. George and disillusioned by a dystopian society that doesn't understand them; which may be somewhat difficult to accept if you've ever spent a train-journey desperately trying to avoid eye-contact with drunken 'casuals'. Otherwise the film is gleeful exploitation and (mercifully) extends two-fingers to any expected moral allegories.
Director Nick Love's stylish cinematography and the young cast's accurate, energetic performances are sufficient to transcend the dated subject-matter. The Football Factory is an undemanding 90-minutes that blows the cobwebs away.
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on 7 June 2010
If you dislike this sort of thing, you will absolutely hate this. But if you like grimy, violent and honest to real life Brit flicks, you'll love it. I personally have no interest football, but I still liked it. I'm a big fab of Nick Love's work anyway.
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on 15 December 2008
Drawing together all the stereotypes and percieved ideads of being a football hooligan was probably the easy part,keeping it interesting and humane was the hard part and i think this film does it very well.
The film follows a bunch of chelsea fans who are more interested in knocking the teeth out of rival fans than they are in how their team does,well thats how it looks anyway,amid all that are some personal touches and a subplot involving two old geezers who live together that bring the film a bit of a heart.
The film is violent and packed with language that is rough and ready but thats how i suspect it would,i wouldnt say its as funny as some say but there are some laugh out loud moments,the taxi driver is funny even if he as politically correct as bernard manning was,all in all i was very entertained and thats all i can ask for.
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on 13 May 2010
Great British boy's movie.
Football, violence, friendship, humour and irony all come together to highlight the stupidity of hooliganism. "What else are you going to do on a Saturday?"
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on 12 October 2011
Probably the best football hooligan of them all! And there's quite a few out there now. Great idea, script, and totally convincing performances from an excellent cast. If you like non stop swearing, drugs and a couple of huge fights then this is for you! Strongly recommended
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on 11 May 2016
The original, and best, of a genre that spurned a lot of trashy rehashes. This one has true-to life characters and goes some way to looking at the psychology behind the behaviour. Well acted. Great atmosphere and a pleasure to rewatch. Not one for the local charity shop.
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on 23 January 2014
I had great expectations of this film and I wasn't disappointed. It's a film that's easy to watch (if you don't mind the odd fight scenes)and one that I could watch again and again. If you want an in depth storyline then this film isn't for you, but I would recommend it.
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on 13 February 2014
tarintino meets football well worth a Saturday night in to watch well acted and plenty of action dany dyers best film by far plus a lot of well known faces ive used novostock a lot and have never been disappointed always 100%
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on 1 November 2013
Watch Green Street , you avin a laugh . This film is 10 times better , real football hooligan culture.Green Street is a Americanized film for the Yanks to try and understand football violence . Nick Love is a legend
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