Nil by Mouth

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Nil by Mouth ★★ 1996 (R)

Oldman draws on his own dysfunctional working-class London background for his impressive writer/director debut, which casually puts you into the middle of one Cockney family's life. There's brutal Ray (Winstone), husband to Val (Burke) and brother-in-law to young addict Billy (Creed-Miles), as well as his tough mother-in-law Janet (Morse) and her mother, Kath (Dore). Billy gets kicked out of the house by Ray and struggles to survive outside his family while a drunken Ray beats the pregnant Val, prompting a display of female solidarity. Formless pic drops into characters' lives at random, showcasing family loyalty and generosity amidst the violence. 128m/C VHS, DVD . GB Ray Winstone, Kathy Burke, Charlie Creed-Miles, Laila Morse, Edna Dore, Steve Sweeney, Chrissie Cotterill, Jon Morrison, Jamie Foreman; D: Gary Oldman; W: Gary Oldman; C: Ron Fortunato; M: Eric Clapton. British Acad. ‘97: Film, Orig. Screenplay; Cannes ‘97: Actress (Burke).