Ken Loach The Spirit of ’45 interview

SampoMedia founder Michael Gubbins will be hosting a Q&A with director Ken Loach about his documentary The Spirit of ’45 at a screening in Cardiff this week.

The film, which premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival, is a polemical piece looking back at the foundation of the welfare state and the optimistic socialism of post-War Britain and calling for a revival of that spirit for what the film suggests is a clear attack on the legacy of that era.

The documentary takes footage from the time and intercuts it with interviews with various campaigners and activists.

Wednesday’s screening at Cardiff’s Chapter arts centre, which has already sold out, is part of the Wales One World Film Festival and will also include some of those who appear in the film.

The event will be simultaneously screened at The Factory in Tonypandy in the Rhondda Valley as part of Zoom, Wales’ International Young People’s Film Festival, supported by the Film Agency for Wales.

The young audience in Tonypandy, which holds a proud place in the history of British socialism, should offer an interesting perspective on the film, which clearly has aspirations to motivate and mobilise a new generation.

Loach has often explored themes of mid-20th century radical politics, but through fiction pieces, such as The Wind That Shakes The Barley (Irish independence) and Land And Freedom (the Spanish Civil War). Why he has opted for documentary for this particular piece will be one of the questions he will be answering.

UK distributor Dogwoof will be releasing the film in UK cinemas on March 15. Film 4.0, the BFI and Creative England have joined forces on a cross-media companion to the film with further interviews and debates. The site, created by Syndicut and The Project Factory, will be offering a ‘My 45’ service, which it suggests will allow individuals to track their lives without the welfare reforms of the 1945 government. will bring you its take on the interview and film later this week.

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