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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ken Loach Delivers Another Slice Of Rawness.
"My Name Is Joe" is a typically gritty, unflinching Ken Loach movie from 1998. It stars the excellent Peter Mullan, who gives an amiable performance as recovering alcoholic JOE.

This Glasgow-set story concerns Joe's blossoming relationship with a good-natured social worker named Sarah. The initial harmony of this relationship is soon put under pressure due to...
Published on 19 July 2008 by Mr. B. A. D. Plowman

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars not to be embarked upon without thought
it is grim
but what else would you expect from ken loach
not a film to cheer you up
some beautiful witty bits
Published 1 month ago by lassie


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ken Loach Delivers Another Slice Of Rawness., 19 July 2008
By 
Mr. B. A. D. Plowman "Brendan" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: My Name is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
"My Name Is Joe" is a typically gritty, unflinching Ken Loach movie from 1998. It stars the excellent Peter Mullan, who gives an amiable performance as recovering alcoholic JOE.

This Glasgow-set story concerns Joe's blossoming relationship with a good-natured social worker named Sarah. The initial harmony of this relationship is soon put under pressure due to Joe's feelings of responsibility for his friend Liam. Liam, you see, has a history of heroin abuse and as a consequence a gang of drug dealing thugs are constantly darkening his door. When Joe learns that Liam is in debt (to the tune of thousands of pounds), his benevolent nature comes to the fore and Joe feels that he has no option but to help his friend. As a result, his relationship with Sarah is threatened and Joe ultimately feels the lure of booze returning to throttle him. The film's climax does not make for easy viewing...

"My Name Is Joe" is one of Ken Loach's most revered movies, and it's easy to see why. Loach is a director who always strives for realism, and it must be said that movies don't come much more "warts 'n' all" than this one. In fact, this movie is frequently so realistic it's actually painful to watch. There is a twitchy heroin-shooting scene that could accurately be described as stomach-churning. There is also a graphic suicide scene which is, frankly, almost UNBEARABLE to watch. Is this movie light-hearted fun for all the family? Erm...no.

That said, there are still moments of humour in this movie to cut through the darkness (mainly involving Joe's hapless football team of delinquents). Be warned, however, that this is far from being a comedy and could leave many viewers feeling emotionally drained. Is it a film to fall in love with? NO. Is it a film to be admired? MOST DEFINITELY. The lack of mindless escapism here is definitely to be applauded.

In conclusion:- If you are after a little bit of light Saturday night entertainment, AVOID this film. If, however, you are seeking a thought-provoking story that is humanistic and features believable characters, then prepare to be rewarded.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another masterpiece by Ken Loach, 21 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: My Name Is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
This gritty film by Ken Loach is Loach at his best, his excellent direction is matched superbly by Peter Mullan's acting as the lead in this story on Glaswegian life. The film deals with delicate issues of drugs and a crap football team, features central to Scottish lifestyle. If you want a film that gives you realism as you want and expect there is none better than Ken Loach and none better than "My name is joe". This is definitely one of the best British films of the last couple of years!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My Name is Joe and I am an alcoholic, 16 Jun 2009
By 
Peter Wade (Colchester England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: My Name is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
My Name is Joe and I am an alcoholic

I am a Ken Loach fan as I liked all the old plays for today in the sixties which were slices of life. This film is certainly that as we follow Joe who is a recovering alcoholic.

There are some funny incidents as when the football club of unemployed turn up in filthy West German football kits. They have to change them as the opposition want to be Germany.

Franz Beckenbauer a fat bold player objects by saying But I have always been Beckenbauer

The referee says if you are Franz Beckenbauer I am the tooth fairy.

After more objections he says

Well Franz you are going to have to change your strip. They do by going topless.

The language is raw but so are the living conditions.

Joe meets and fancies a health worker Sarah. In a very moving section she asks why he gave up drinking. he said he didn't want to tell her as she might hate him.

He ended up beating up his girlfriend and later claiming that he had been drunk but he hadn't. as a result he gave up drink.

He is now on the straight and narrow but he decided to help Liam who owes money to gangsters. Joe decides to help by doing a drug run.

Sarah finds out which breaks their relationship. Things go from bad to worse with fatal consequences for Liam.

The ending is sad but you have a glimmer of hope that they will find each other.

A gritty realistic film which shows people who are in the mire and that they can't necessarily get out of it.

It is filmed like a documentary and you could easily believe that these people are not actors. A good film but some might not like its grim realism.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gritty Glasgow tale, 17 April 2009
By 
LXIX (scotland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: My Name is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
"My Name is Joe" was a very fast 100 minutes for me, so it's fair to say that I enjoyed it. The basic story is that Joe is an unemployed recovering alcoholic who meets up with a local health visitor (Sarah) and romance blossoms. However in the world of an inner city Glasgow housing estate - with poverty, deprivation, drugs, and other associated factors such as organised crime, the romance is not straightforward.

This is a hard-hitting film. It contains strong language from the very outset, violence and even intravenous drug use. There are moral undertones though - such as just how hard it is to turn your life around when the spiral and the socio-economic odds are so heavily stacked against you.

Overall, this is a very watchable movie. There are also 28 minutes of extras in the form of interviews with the cast and the director. If you're not Scottish you might just need to put your subtitles on.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Some of us can't go to the police, some of us can't go to the bank for a loan ....Some of us don't have a choice"., 28 Dec 2007
By 
@GeekZilla9000 "I am completely operational a... (Doncaster, Yorkshire, UK.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: My Name Is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
The name Ken Loach is synonymous with films which have a realism unparalleled by any other major director.

This film is set in Scotland (council estates obviously, this IS a Ken Loach film!) and tells the story of a recovering alcoholic, Joe.

I'd love to discuss some of the plot but I think I might give things away. This is a very personal journey and it would be unfair of me to spoil it.

All I'll say is that Joe has had a dodgy past but finally finds his life in a stable condition. He is a sober, moral man who becomes involved in a situation which compromises his ethics - but feels he has no choice.

This is perfectly acted, and feels so real that I was desperate to know the fate of the characters. Once the film finishes, those characters *still* seem real and maybe thats because to a large extent, they are.

Loach manages yet again to capture the essence of real humanity, this doesn't feel rehearsed, this doesn't feel scripted (and much of it probably isn't), it doesn't even feel acted - this is a real corner of humanity.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 19 July 2007
By 
W. Brotherston (Edinburgh) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: My Name Is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
A hard-hitting, sledge-hammer of a film with supeb acting. This film completely blew me away.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My name is Joe, 19 Sep 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: My Name is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
Brilliant film, a real must see. Peter Mullen plays a really good part in this film. Received within 2 days of ordering, in excellent condition.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a gritty little film, 21 May 2005
By 
JJ (Scotland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: My Name Is Joe [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
Four stars for this film mainly due the central performance by Peter Mullan. As Joe, a man trying to drag himself away from a life that was ruled by alcohol and violence, he gives a funny, touching and emotional display that really has you willing him to win through.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant, appalling film, 17 Mar 2004
This is an excellent film. Well made, well acted, funny, gripping from start to finish but I'll almost certainly never watch it again. Peter Mullan's performance as Joe is superb. Full of humanity, strength, vulnerability and struggle. The central love theme is touchingingly beautiful. The ever-present background of violence menaces all the way through. The portrayal of a world dominated by poverty, debt, alcohol, drugs and violence is far too good. There are a host of fine performances from all of the cast. Best of all, the film doesn't let you settle for any easy answers. Joe is a rock for many people around him. In turn, he has people he can count on. He's getting by. Maybe even better than that. But he makes a mistake. Or is it? There just isn't a straightforward answer in this film. And that's it's real strength. It's like life. You struggle on. Do the best you can. Make what seems like the best decision you can at the time but you never know the consequences. I saw this film at the cinema and came out feeling like my guts had been wrenched out. I'm not sure I've seen a more powerful film. But I'm not going back for more. No thanks.
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3.0 out of 5 stars not to be embarked upon without thought, 28 Feb 2014
This review is from: My Name Is Joe (DVD)
it is grim
but what else would you expect from ken loach
not a film to cheer you up
some beautiful witty bits
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