Director: Marcus Warchus
This group of militant homosexuals are blatantly familiar from historic accounts and other depictions of Gay Rights activists from the time. With its figurehead refusing to accept prejudice from the world, believing in everyone's duty to stand up for themselves and their sexuality, this role is played with equal parts resilience to dogged and frustrating determination. Newcomer Schnetzer appears like a time capsule transported directly from the 80s, while the rest of his group are cast perfectly as the ragtag gaggle of revolutionary activists who fight for others rather than themselves. Marsay and MacKay are the heart of the film, but it's Andrew Scott who shines the brightest, reluctantly dragged along a journey that becomes much greater than his own personal plight.
Most realistic of all is the film's portrayal of the miner's strike. Though it has been tackled on screen before, the depiction of the sheer desperation that the workers and their families fall to has never been portrayed more vividly. They come together in solidarity with one another because they simply have no choice, with whole families without food, without heat or any money at all. As time passes, though the town begins to disintegrate, the community does not, but then neither does much of the inherent prejudice still lingering in the more stoic members of their community. Though you see many people come around to their unlikely supporters, even desperation cannot turn others against their bigotry.
The film is uproariously funny, with the ensemble bouncing off each other like an all-Welsh ping-pong match. But for every moment of humour there is as effect a moment of poignancy, depicting two contrasting communities who are both desperate for help and support. Though there is very little mention of Christianity in the film, the LGSM appear as the most Christian and Christ-like group that I've seen on screen in years. They're undeniably human, but saint-like and brave. Maybe it's because I identify with them so much, but as we are shown their backstories and individual plotlines, none of them feel arbitrary or overdone. With HIV, family rejection and reconciliation becoming major parts of the over-arching storyline, it feels like a gay compendium of the 1980s, without it becoming alienating for the rest of the audience, nor the miners' side of the story. Somehow, Pride juggles two wholly separate communities' issues, histories and characters without ever feeling forced or rushed where most would struggle with just one. The script is tight, the acting on point and it's the perfect example of how the real Gay Agenda is to have no agenda at all. It proves just how much homosexuality can be a non-issue, both in its depictions on screen and the existence of the film full stop.