ONE of the region’s best-loved writers is being celebrated at an independent cinema with a collection of film screenings and an exhibition.
Fifty years ago, Barry Hines’ second novel A Kestrel for a Knave was published. A year later, it was adapted for the screen as Kes, and has gone on to become a defining northern story in British cinema.
Unlike many working-class writers of the post-war period, Barnsley-born Hines was never tempted to leave the north, either physically or in the stories he told.
Long after the fashion for Northern realism faded, Hines continued to be inspired by his South Yorkshire surroundings, and to represent the people and landscapes of his class. This meant that during the deeply divisive and transformative 1980s, he was able to do his most important work, with the trilogy of The Gamekeeper, Looks and Smiles, and Threads, exploring — in often brutal fashion — the human impact of Thatcherism on the north.
Sheffield’s Showroom Cinema will screen the film adaptations of the trilogy this month, starting with The Gamekeeper on Thursday (16), Looks and Smiles on Wednesday, August 22, and closing with 1984 nuclear disaster docu-drama Threads on Wednesday, August 29.
The screenings explore three prevailing issues faced by 1980s Britain — the exploitation inherent to the class system, the rise of unemployment and the ever-real threat of a nuclear missile strike.
Our North — A South Yorkshire Trilogy also includes an exhibition in the Showroom Cinema of photographs of artefacts from the Barry Hines Archive and limited edition postcards produced in response to each film, in partnershjp with Patrick Murphy Studio and Dearne Valley Landscape Partnership.
Cinema tickets are priced at £8.80 or £6.60 concessions and £4.50 for everyone aged 26 and under with CINE 26 Membership.
For more information visit https://www.showroomworkstation.org.uk/our-north.