Despite the fact that this movie is quite predictable (come on, as if you didn't see the end coming!) I absolutely loved this movie. (So much so, I have the dvd, and I'm not one to run out and buy a lot of movies.)
So what makes it so good? The story is classic - boy yearns to be something, but dad doesn't like it. The production quality is good, too, from the sets to the way they show time passing. The music is great - late 70s T-Rex to The Jam (and Eagle Eye Cherry, too.) Yeah, I've got the soundtrack.
The acting is great. Jamie Bell, a newcomer to acting, does great. Gary Lewis plays his gruff dad (I'm not sure what else he has been in.) And Julie Walters as Mrs. Wilkinson as Billy's ballet teacher is impressive.
Ballet? Yes, this movie is about a boy who wants to learn ballet. And in the early 80's northern England, in a mining town, that's not what boys do.
Dad: All right for your Nana, for girls. No, not for lads, Billy. Lads do football... or boxing... or wrestling. Not friggin' ballet.
Billy: What lads do wrestling?
I do have one major problem with the movie. The ending. The last minute of the film, from the time Dad gets on the train until the credits, I absolutely hated. I didn't need to know what happened to Billy; I would have preferred having that left up to me, the audience. But as it was the last minute, I can mentally block it out and still absolutely love this movie.