Bronco Bullfrog

Film, Comedy
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Bronco Bullfrog
You can just about read, scrawled on the wall of a shed in this buoyant and funny British film from 1969, ‘Barny (sic) is a big prick’, which gives you some idea of the sort of kids young director Barney Platts-Mills was working with when he filmed this story of teenage love and alienation on the streets of the old East End. Bronco Bullfrog (Sam Shepherd) is a lonely wide boy fresh out of borstal, but the film’s anti-hero is Del (Del Walker), a young welder who starts doing ‘jobs’ with Bronco at the same time as dating nervous 15-year-old Irene (Anne Gooding) against the wishes of her sourpuss mum. All this change sends Del into a headspin: what’s a boy to do with his life? None of the actors were professional (although some came from Joan Littlewood’s Theatre Workshop), and there’s a lovely naturalism to the chat and romance, even if some scenes come across as a bit shaky. Most strikingly, and unlike other better-known realist films of the time, there’s nothing precious about its attitude to the working class: the spirit of its actors runs right through it.

By: Dave Calhoun


Release details

Rated: 12
Release date: Friday June 11 2010
Duration: 86 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Barney Platts-Mills
Screenwriter: Barney Platts-Mills
Cast: Del Walker
Anne Gooding
Sam Shepherd
Roy Haywood
Freda Shepherd

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

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A proper film. Wit as sharp as the creases on a pair of sta-prest. Timeless wisdom and reflections so intimate, that we share the dirty blanket on the ground with the young progagonists, gaze up at the trees and dream of escape.