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4.4 out of 5 stars
217
4.4 out of 5 stars
The Damned United [DVD] [2009]
Format: DVD|Change
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on 5 April 2017
Michael Sheen is a rather excellent actor with an ability to act people better than they can act themselves. His Brian Clough is right on the nail. So, hats off to him!
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on 18 July 2017
Probably will become a classic for those old enough to remember clough. A brilliant performance by Sheen.
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on 3 June 2017
Great film with so many brilliant actors. Would have liked it to last a little longer.
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on 22 April 2017
This guy is just too clever for words, actor & Cloughy
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on 17 August 2017
fantastic. watched three times in two days.
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on 3 July 2017
Perfect. Thanks, Jose
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on 4 August 2017
Brilliant film. Worth watching more than once.
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on 3 August 2017
Very enjoyable. I was a great fan of Brian Clough and Peter Taylor. Pity we don't have such dynamic football mangers (plus assistant) today.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 6 September 2009
Don Revie and Brian Clough were great footballers and great managers, both from Middlesbrough (about 10 miles north of where I grew up) but the film sets them up as tragic enemies in a reputational boxing match in which stinging blow after blow is landed by each to the benefit of neither. David Pearce's novel has Clough as the admirer of Revie who turns against his hero. They battle it out at key points of Clough's early career at Derby County, and at his short career at Leeds itself, and finish it off on TV. Revie leaves for disappointment at England, Clough to be reborn at Nottingham Forest, neither are ever the same again.

Michael Sheen is scary as Clough, Colm Meaney brilliant as Revie, both sound like their counterparts and even begin to look like the originals. The Leeds squad is recognisable even to me at this remove; and so is the pre-Thatcher world of self-made men running British sport with all the witless charm that they ran their businesses. The attitudes, the accents, the fashions and the locations are spot on; yet this is not a sports film, you see very little soccer, it's an old fashioned tragedy about rivalry and hubris, about genius and the deadening effect of the mediocre types who seem to run sport (as they run life). The cast are brilliant and the result a great tale.
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on 4 September 2009
Using an astute mixture of documentary and fictionalized reconstruction, director Tom Hooper gives us a superb parallel account of Brian Clough's management of two football teams in the late 60s/early 70s: Derby County (assisted by Peter Taylor) and Leeds United (without Taylor). While the principals don't look particularly like their characters, the acting is so good and the story so involving that you soon forget that these are not real people. Michael Sheen, in a film which sadly won't get the worldwide distribution of The Queen or Frost/Nixon, is at the top of his game, conveying effortlessly not only the maverick manager's self-destructive egotism and ambition, but also deeper shades of a flawed but brilliant personality. Timothy Spall is (despite a wide discrepancy in physical appearance) engaging and convincing as Taylor, while Colm Meaney never ceases to surprise in his deft handling of difficult roles - here very believable as Clough's nemesis Don Revie. Jim Broadbent is great as usual as Derby's long-suffering Chairman, and the only character I felt struck a false note was Stephen Graham as Billy Bremner - played as a squat and sulky cherub, almost a cruel parody of the man - and not really convincing as a professional footballer.

The plot cracks along with humour and dramatic turns at the expense of a few factual compromises, and the era is re-created with a smattering of anachronisms - but these discrepancies are forgivable. In fact, most of the interesting half hour or so of deleted scenes would have enriched the film even more if they had been kept, showing as they do Clough ranging from his most heartless to his most loving. Add to this interesting featurettes of the time and Sheen re-creating interviews - not to mention Muhammed Ali's actual tribute to Clough in the feature itself - and you have a tremendous dvd. This is a top-notch British film celebrating a fascinating British folk hero, a highly recommended adaptation of David Peace's book - even for those who are not football fans.
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