The film "This is England" is the story about a young boy named Shaun. The story starts off by showing the last day of term for Shaun, he is severely bullied by an older student and starts fighting when this older student makes a joke concerning Shaun's dead father.
Then on his way home Shaun meets a group of teenage boys sitting in a tunnel, they invite him to join them. This group of youngsters makes Shaun a part of something, and as Shaun has missed that for a long time he grasp the chance.
Woody, the leader, has an old friend who has been in prison, and while there the friend (Combo) has developed a very nationalistic attitude, almost racist. Shaun gets more and more caught up in this skinhead lifestyle and goes with his new friends to a EDL (English Defence League) meeting.
From the old group ...view middle of the document...
He has no real friends and he is therefore easier persuaded to join the skinheads. After joining this new group of people he visibly starts to change, he gets all his hair shaved off his head, he wears proper shirts, and he gets some new military-like purple shoes.
Shaun joins a more extreme skinhead group lead by Combo, Shaun seems to be somewhat more happy in this environment. He is content with the way things are going until Combo goes crazy one night after smoking pot, and he starts beating up one of Shaun's friends, the black boy Milky.
The setting of the film:
The film is about the racial tensions in 1983 England. The film is set in a changing England, where there are many tensions about foreign workers and foreign people in general.
The film goes in and shows a town in the Midlands and the tensions that goes on there. The surroundings in this town are poor, and buildings are left abandoned.
The first gathering point in the film, is the house of Gadgets parents who never seems to be at home.
There are several longer shots in s crammed flat belonging to Combo later on in the film, the flat seems to be situated in a public housing system
There is a miner grocery shop on Shaun's way home from school that is owned by a Pakistani man in his 40's. The shop is later in the film attacked by the skinheads lead by Combo.
Comments on the themes:
Nationalism and racism are two of the main themes, these are the themes that stand out the most. The skinheads are depicted as people who are run-alongs to manipulating leaders.
Therefore another of the themes are manipulations of both young boys and adults, both groups go, without any mentioning of the consequences, with these leaders who are portraying this way of life as the best.
The consequences war is in this film vivid. We can see the consequences of war for Shaun, who is left without a father, left without a male model for his future.