Tony Benn: Will and Testament plus Satellite Q&A Cert. 12A Picture house at FACT

  • Released2014
  • Running time160 minutes
  • DirectorSkip Kite
  • GenreDocumentary

When he died in 2014 at the age of 88, Tony Benn was Britain’s longest-serving politician. Skip Kite’s review of his career serves as a useful reminder of how politics and indeed the wider world have changed since Benn first entered parliament in 1950.

In a series of interviews held largely in his modest kitchen, Benn describes his privileged background, his political awakening, his fiercely held socialist beliefs, and the successes and failures of his efforts to implement them, both as a minister in post-war Labour governments and later as a backbench MP.

Kite’s skilful use of archive news footage to illustrate Benn’s achievements, and his cogent, strongly felt arguments, all help to create a history of Britain during the latter half of the 20th century.

Following the screening, journalist and author Samantha Norman will host a panel discussion, with guests including former BBC political editor John Sergeant; Labour MP for Islington North, Jeremy Corbyn; convenor of the Stop the War Coalition, Lindsey German; and the film's director of photography, Michael Miles.

Recommended by Chris Harris, Film Programmer at Picturehouse at FACT

It’s a really touching portrait of his life with loads of lovely archive footage. He narrates the film himself as well so it’s full of his wonderful philosophies and opinions.

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