63 Up

“This has been a glimpse of Britain’s future.” Each installment of director Michael Apted’s documentary series ends with those words, spoken over footage of 14 boys and girls, all aged 7, romping and playing. At the time that statement was recorded—in 1964, for a one-off episode of Granada TV’s World In Action—it felt appropriate. But since Apted has turned that one episode into a sequence of films (broadcast on TV in the UK and served up in theaters here) that check in on those same 14 Britons every seven years, that closing proclamation feels progressively less and less fitting. And not only because the subjects of this film are now in their 60s, and all staring down old age in a post-Brexit England. As heartening as it is to peer into the lives of these men and women and see how much their personalities and prospects have changed or remained the same over the course of five decades, they haven’t been truly reflective of Britain for some time.

by Robert Ham
Showtimes & Tickets


Michael Apted