Many films have trailers that do them slightly less than full justice. I was aware of Made in Dagenham, but even Mark Kermode’s listing of it as one of his Top 5 Films of 2010 didn’t get me past the trailer and into a cinema at the time. The involvement of the Calendar Girls director left me thinking that film might well be one of those films you label as ‘very British’ and ‘nice’, but might not pack the punch that it might have done.
Its appearance on DVD, the cajoling of some friends (of both sexes), and a quick Amazon order later, I finally spent 108 minutes in its company. And was very glad I did. Yes, it is ‘very British’ – there’s a down-home smallness to it, but appropriately so. Though fictionalised in parts (the central character, played brilliantly by Sally Hawkins, is an amalgam of several real women), its narrative arc is a true story: in 1968, 187 ordinary working women really did set in train a real step in history.