Prick Up Your Ears


D: Stephen Frears

Curzon/Civilhand/Zenith (Andrew Brown)

UK 1987

111 mins


W: Alan Bennett [based on the book by John Lahr]

DP: Oliver Stapleton

Ed: Mick Audsley

Mus: Stanley Myers

Gary Oldman (Joe Orton), Alfred Molina (Kenneth Halliwell), Vanessa Redgrave (Peggy Ramsay), Frances Barber (Leonor Orton), Julie Walters (Elsie Orton)

Prick Up Your Ears is a biopic of homosexual playwright Joe Orton, studying his life, death and relationship with his gay lover.

The film does meander a little, seemingly trying to appear a bit too sophisticated, but it does have a witty screenplay by Alan Bennett, adapting the biography written by John Lahr.

Gary Oldman delivers an excellent performance as Orton, as does Alfred Molina as his struggling lover, whilst Vanessa Redgrave is also exemplary as Peggy Ramsey, through whose point of view we see most of the series of events.

It's subject matter which many people will find quite esoteric, but will be appreciated highly by those who it directly appeals to.


Alfred Molina & Gary Oldman in Prick Up Your Ears
Alfred Molina & Gary Oldman in Prick Up Your Ears