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Made in Dagenham

49 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From the director of Calendar Girls comes this extraordinary story based on true events. Dagenham, England 1968. At the town’s local Ford automobile plant, Rita O’Grady (Golden Globe® winner Sally Hawkins) is one of only 187 women in a workforce of 55,000 men. Facing overwhelming opposition in this “man’s world,” Rita rallies her female co-workers to fight for equal pay — a stand that defies the corporate status quo, threatens her marriage, and ultimately exacts a tragic toll. But with the support of the shop’s steward (Golden Globe® winner Bob Hoskins) and the government’s Employment Secretary (two-time Golden Globe® winner Miranda Richardson), the women become the sensation of the nation — and the catalyst for a profound turning point in time.


Who would think a movie about an autoworkers strike could be so entertaining and even moving? Made in Dagenham is simply brilliant. Rita O'Grady (Sally Hawkins, Happy-Go-Lucky) finds herself unexpectedly thrust into the limelight when she becomes the leader of a strike by the women who sew the upholstery for a Ford factory in Dagenham, England--a strike that, thanks largely to the efforts of management and unions alike to dismiss it, turns into a struggle over equal pay for women. But because of a smart and subtle screenplay, understated direction, and above all outstanding performances by the entire cast--also featuring Rosamund Pike (An Education), Miranda Richardson (The Crying Game), and Bob Hoskins (Who Framed Roger Rabbit)--Made in Dagenham never stops being about people, even as its political scope widens. Every step is grounded in human relationships, among the striking women, between Rita and her husband, between the wife of a factory manager and a floor worker. The movie skillfully balances issues of class and gender equality and makes you care deeply about them--and about these people struggling for basic fairness. And it's funny, sad, and genuinely stirring. Simply a marvelous movie, not to be missed. --Bret Fetzer

Special Features

Commentary with Director Nigel Cole
The Making of Made in Dagenham

Product Details

  • Actors: Sally Hawkins, Miranda Richardson, Rosamund Pike
  • Directors: Nigel Cole
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Classics
  • DVD Release Date: March 29, 2011
  • Run Time: 113 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,512 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Made in Dagenham" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Michael B. Druxman on March 6, 2011
Format: DVD
MADE IN DAGENHAM is sort of a British version of NORMA RAE.

The film, based on a true story, is set in the late 1960s. It tells of a group of English women, employed at the Ford Motor Factory, who took on management and their own union by going out on strike, insisting on equal pay for equal work.

The always charming Sally Hawkins, playing an ordinary working class wife and mother, becomes the unexpected leader of the revolt, encouraged by her sympathetic union representative (Bob Hoskins) and, surprisingly, the attractive wife (Rosamund Pike) of the plant's manager, a highly educated, intelligent woman who, as a female, feels the same lack of respect from the men in her life.

Like the Sally Field classic, MADE IN DAGENHAM is one of those "stand up and cheer" movies that climaxes when the striking women meet with Miranda Richardson, the British Secretary of State. The film has a superb screenplay by William Ivory and was directed by Nigel Cole. Also in the well-chosen cast are Geraldine James, Jamie Winstone, Rupert Graves, Nicola Duffett and Richard Schiff, who plays the tough American Ford representative, sent to the UK to put those striking women in their place.

My only complaint with this otherwise excellent entertainment is the fact that, because England and the United States do not share a common language, some of the dialogue is difficult to understand.

© Michael B. Druxman
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 6, 2011
Format: DVD
MADE IN DAGENHAM is a 'dramatized documentary' in that it is a recreation of a 1968 incident that occurred in Dagenham, a suburb of London. It was the time of Stonewall and the antiwar protests in America and so perhaps too few people appreciated the importance of this rebellion - a strike of equal rights, equal pay, and a statement against sexual discrimination at the Ford car factory. The employed women of the town were the ones responsible for creating the upholstery for the cars, but when one Rita O'Grady (Sally Hawkins) took on the inequalities she manage to become the spokeswoman for the female workers and the revolt was successful in settling a longterm problem.

The cast of this quiet little powerhouse of a movie includes the brilliance of Miranda Richardson, Bob Hoskins, Rosamund Pike, Rupert Graves, Andrea Riseborough, Jaime Winstone and many others. The screenplay was written by William Ivory and the understated and subtle direction is by Nigel Cole. This is a brilliant little movie that packs a wallop. Grady Harp, May 11
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By pjf on July 13, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I had no idea that equal pay for equal work began with 150 women in Dagenham and spread to Ford plants (and by default to other manufacturers) though the world. The speech that the lead character gives to the trade union conference begins so chatty and colloquially, but in a few words delivers a resounding impact to the mostly male audience. A brilliant film, wonderfully scripted, produced and acted. A shame it didn't get equal treatment in its distribution so that more people see it and understand the significance of the events. Buy this, or see it however you can, because it is worth it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. Gawlitta on September 18, 2011
Format: DVD
"Made in Dagenham" received good buzz from critics and award committes alike, but I wasn't sure if I'd be watching another chick-flick. Rest assured, there's enough guy involvement to make this a generally pleasing true story about equal rights. The delightful Sally Hawkins is on hand to provide a strong and centered heroine, and the always reliable Miranda Richardson scores as hard-as-nails Barbara Castle.

There will be comparisons to "Norma Rae", but this film isn't as character driven; rather, the ensemble excels as a whole to provide insight as well as strong entertainment.

I enjoyed it more than expected; glad I saw it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark Turner on June 30, 2011
Format: DVD
There are a number of movies made that feature the real life stories of situations and people involved in them. It may be true that these stories are a bit embellished in an attempt to compact them into anywhere from 90 to 120 minutes, but the story at the heart always remains the same. And when it's a good story it makes the viewer want to find out more. Such is the case with MADE IN DAGENHAM.

Set in 1968, the ladies at the Ford plant in Dagenham, England, work just as hard as the men there. Their jobs may be different, but its work, it's difficult and they sweat the same as the men do. The problem is they don't get paid the same. When their local union rep Albert (Bob Hoskins) talks to them about it, they decide to go on a 24 hour strike.

The 187 women do so with the support of their fellow workers, the 55,000 men who work there as well at first. They've been told that the reason for the lower pay was the due to the scales established by work performance studies. When they learn the truth, that it is simply because they are female, the women don't take to well to their situation. Instead they decide to continue the strike longer.

The woman leading this charge is Rita O'Grady (Sally Hawkins), a mother and wife who finds herself drawn into the role of leader unwillingly at first. As shop steward she usually drops back to allow her friend to keep things on track. But with the convincing of Albert who sees her as a natural leader, she takes on the job of seeing to it that their grievances are met.

The one thing that's interesting here is that it's not just the factory that chooses to abuse these women. Their own union does so as well, agreeing to put their case on a back burner in an effort to get other grievances dealt with first.
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