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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: DVD|Change
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on 31 December 2012
I will start my review with the only negative point I can think of - my one complaint with this DVD was the sloppy editing. Why leave the titles up where the adverts would have been shown when it originally aired on TV? If you can cut the ads out, why not the titles? That was the only thing that kept reminding me it was a film, which was a shame because it would otherwise have been totally absorbing.

Still, it has 5 stars from me regardless of that. I was 15 years old at the time of the Hillsborough disaster, and I remember seeing it on the news, but at that time it did not really affect me and my life - I was 15 and like many 15 year olds, probably more interested in myself and what I was planning to do with my friends that weekend. But now I am 39, and due to the recent campaign by the families of the dead for justice, the tragedy has been once more pushed into the forefront of my group of friends' conversations I decided to give this film a watch. I have seen Jimmy McGovern's work before and regard him as extremely talented and found his series "The Street" thoroughly absorbing, and I can honestly say "Hillsborough" was no exception. It being true just adds to the drama and I was glued to my seat throughout, at many times tearful, but most of all frustrated for the characters during the build up, disgust at the police chief Duckenfield, and what the poor parents must have felt at learning that they had lost one, or even both of their children simply while seeing a football match. One scene which struck me as being particularly poignant was the mother of Sarah and Victoria Hicks, played by Annabelle Apsion, upon looking out of the living room window and seeing two coffins brought out from two hearses, saying excitedly to her husband (Christopher Eccleston) "The girls are home! The girls are home!"

To think that I knew about this tragedy at the time it happened and yet I was not aware at all, of how horrifying, shocking, and ultimately sad it was, makes me feel quite ashamed. This is compulsory viewing - yes it is harrowing, but it will stay with you for the rest of your life, and it will certainly make you consider the positive things in your own life. Even more sad was the knowledge that it could so easily have been prevented, if the people in charge had done their jobs properly.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 December 2013
Although based on a very emotional subject, 'Hillsborough' is one of the best made for television movies I've ever seen.

Written by the talented Jimmy McGovern, this emotionally powerful film was first screened in 1996 and won, among other things, a BAFTA award for Best Single Drama.

A reconstruction of the events which took place between 1989 to 1991, 'Hillsborough' follows three families through their trails and tribulations which unfolded after what happened at Sheffield Wednesday's ground when 96 Liverpool fans were crushed to death in the front of the cameras in 1989, before and just six minutes into the FA Cup Semi-Final against Nottingham Forest.

Boasting a fine cast of British acting talent including Ricky Tomlinson and Christopher Eccleston, 'Hillsborough' is a revealing film, although not an easy watch (due to the upsetting nature of the subject), it is an important drama that reminds/educates us all of this tragedy, the shameful cover-ups by the so-called police, and how certain sources, notably 'The Sun' newspaper sought to vilify the working class people.

As this is a drama, minor changes were made to the chronology, and certain events were added for the sake of clarity. However, as stated at the beginning, 'Hillsborough' was based entirely on fact, using both court transcripts and eye witness reports.

Raw, poignant, and emotional - I think that 'Hillsborough' is one television play that should be watched by everybody.
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on 27 June 2015
After watching it a few times when it was on tv, I decided to buy this dvd. A record, which is not easy viewing, of ordinary people who went to a football match and never came back. The acting is superb, you feel like you are a fly on the wall watching the real people who were involved.
Felt desperately sad watching but many other emotions as well, angry at the unjustness of it all and the way people have had to fight to be listened to. .
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on 1 July 2014
A horrible tragedy and disaster. Only a few things have been changed for tv reasons to make it more dramatic. However, focusing on it as a story and not a real event, the film is very well done. The acting is amazing. Will bring tears to your eyes. The lady who played Mrs Hicks is very believable.
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on 6 May 2013
Living out of the country at the time of the disaster my recall has always been less than reality.This production put me straight and particularly watching it at the time of the latest investigations, Jimmy McGovern seemed to have all the facts over 10 years more than others who should have. Jimmy certainly knows how to tell a Northern historical tale with the right balance of facts and emotion. Telling the story through several families whilst maintaining the true scale of this tragedy was very effective.
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on 8 January 2015
Great dvd, gives a great insight into what happened on that day and gives a feel to the pain people went through.

Justice For The 96. ❤️
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on 24 May 2016
good film 100%.
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on 16 May 2014
Pulls at every parents heartstrings....hard to take at times....but they knew the truth was not being told.. had to wait for years for the truth ..
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on 8 June 2011
Bought 2 copies, one for me, one for my son, so he would know the story from our perspective.
Shocking it was banned from distribution for so long.
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on 7 July 2010
I did not see the tragedy as it began to unfold at Hillsborough but I can vividly remember being shocked when it began to appear on news flashes soon afterwards and the memory of these scenes has stayed with me ever since. The film brilliantly reconstructs how an ordinary day for a group of people who go to a football match or stay at home to watch it on television becomes a nightmare of panic, uncertainty and anger as first the people are caught up in the crush, then their relatives at home suffer the agony of not knowing if they survived and then the survivors and their relatives having to cope with realising how badly the emergency was handled by the authorities. Particularly galling is the knowledge by some relatives that their loved ones who died that dreadful day could have been saved if the rescue had been better organised by those who were charged with the responsibility of doing this.

The acting is uniformally fine by the cast, their portrayal of how families would feel in these circumstances is superbly conveyed and the scenes of what happened afterwards when the enquiry took place is particularly well done. You could really feel their frustration and rage as the full extent of the failures of the authorities and their refusal to acknowledge them became apparent.

As with many tragedies lessons were learnt and football grounds were made safer and the authorities are now, hopefully, better at dealing with such emergencies. I only hope that it does not take another Hillsborough for us to find out differently.

David Rowland
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