Movie review – Equal pay sewn up

2011-01-21 12:24

Film: Made in Dagenham (UIP)
Director: Nigel Cole
Featuring: Sally Hawkins, Bob Hoskins, Daniel Mays, Rosamund Pike and ­Miranda Richardson
Rating: 7/10

Made In Dagenham is one of those films that the British do so well.

A character-driven story about a historical event – the 1968 Ford sewing machinist strike in Dagenham, England.

Sally Hawkins, who received an Oscar nomination for Happy-Go-Lucky two years ago, is Rita O’Grady, a working-class mother-of-two who is thrust into the ­national limelight in her pursuit of fair treatment.

She and her co-workers sew the seats together for every car that rolls off Ford’s assembly line, but their specialised job is considered unskilled. The main reason for this is that they are women.

With a lot of encouragement from their supervisor Albert (Bob Hoskins), the women kick up a fuss about getting less money for doing the same level and amount of work as their male counterparts.

Though the film depicts the larger legal war that successfully culminated in the Equal Pay Act of 1970 in the United Kingdom, it is the little battles the women face along the way that make this film so compelling.

Director Nigel Cole and his team have captured the late 1960s in England perfectly – the music, the fashion and the archaic attitudes to gender too.

Imagine a woman getting less money than a man for doing the same job because she’s a woman?

Unfortunately, most of us can, because while there may be legislation to prevent it, gender discrimination still exists, though it’s a little less blatant these days.

Made in Dagenham will appeal to those who like to have a cause to rally around.

As funny in parts as it is serious, the film is full of solid performances.

I couldn’t help thinking that I should know a lot more about these pioneering women who put their personal lives at stake to make sure they and those who came after them were treated fairly.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.