Box art for Made In Dagenham

Made In Dagenham

comedy, drama


Based on the 1968 strike at the Ford Dagenham car plant, in which 850 female workers walked out in protest of sexual discrimination.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
    80%
  • Audience Score
    75%

common sense

ON for kids age 16
Positive messages
4 out of 5
Positive role models
4 out of 5
Sex
3 out of 5
Violence
2 out of 5
Consumerism
1 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
2 out of 5
Language
4 out of 5

Uplifting tale of fight for equal pay; strong language.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that though this film is rated R, based on occasional vulgar language ("f--k" in numerous forms, "bollocks," "arse," "s--t'), and one short sexual encounter (shot from the shoulders up; participants are clothed), it is an educational and entertaining look back at a courageous period in the history of women's rights. Set in England, the working class dialect may be hard for an American audience to understand in some scenes, but it most likely will not impact the viewer's general grasp of the story. One secondary character has a violent dream and then commits suicide off camera. His feet are seen swaying above the floor as his wife screams upon discovering him. Assorted women of all shapes and sizes remove their shirts and work in their bras in an uncomfortably warm factory. Many characters smoke frequently and there is some drinking and drunkenness when the workers unwind in local bars.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about how times have changed or haven't changed with respect to women earning equal pay for equal work. Find out what statistics show nearly half a century later about male versus female earnings in the United States and Britain?
  • Three very different women were profiled in this film: a woman working in a factory, an educated stay-at-home mom, and a powerful politician. What did the film show that they all had in common? Were these women stereotypes, or did they challenge stereotypes instead?
  • The fim features a lot of drinking and smoking. Does it make a difference to you that the movie is set in a time when smoking was more common? What are the effects of watching smoking and drinking onscreen?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    80%
    reviews counted: 20
    see all Made In Dagenham reviews
  • Audience

    75%

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: A spirited look -- well written, beautifully acted, full of uplift -- at lovably cheeky heroines on the march for a little respect.

- Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle, Friday, January 7, 2011

Rotten: One of those gang-of-gals movies full of bicycles, reggae songs, underwear shots and scenes of emotional growth.

- Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com, Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Fresh: In "Dagenham," the filmmaker applies just the right pressure in examining why paying someone a fair wage, no matter their gender, shouldn't be all that difficult to agree to. Harrumph.

- Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, Thursday, November 18, 2010

Audience Reviews

5 stars

Cast: Sally Hawkins, Andrea Riseborough, Jaime Winstone, Lorraine Stanley, Nicola Duffett, Geraldine James, Bob Hoskins, Matthew Aubrey, Daniel Mays, Roger Lloyd-Pack, Miranda Richardson Director: Nigel Cole Summary: Sally Hawkins stars in this cheeky dramatization of the landmark 1968 labor strike initiated by hundreds of women who rebelled against discrimination and demanded the same pay as men for their work in a London automobile manufacturing plant. My Thoughts: "Sally Hawkins is great in the film. The movie is based on true events, which always makes a film that much more interesting. I never even new about 1986 labor strike. So the film, for me, was a learning experience. A great film for women. All the ladies in the film did a fantastic job at telling the story. Not being familiar to the story, I found myself cheering right along with the women. It's definitely a film that will bring tears to your eyes for the sad things they go through to their triumph. A great film."

- LWOODS04, Thursday, May 17, 2012

4 stars

A wonderful look into a time and a place, Made in Dagenham on the surface tells the tale of how 187 women auto workers (they ran Singer sewing machines all day making upholstery for Ford) banded together and brought about equal pay for women. But looking beyond that admirable feat, you have a nice look into the glass ceiling, good old boy network, as well as the standard mores of the time where women were considered second class citizens. The film may be a bit too "bright, shiny day" as it seems Sally Hawkins simply cannot do otherwise, but while you may be wishing to delve into more pathos, the story told here is a good one and it's told well. Simply from a historical perspective... 50,000 employees at Ford's Dagenham plant (and many more at another plant in Liverpool) - that makes up a considerable work force - something that perhaps Americans were unaware of back then, as Ford was the #1 company on the planet. That Ford employed so many people world wide makes the backbones of the story all the more creditable - from Ford's standpoint, if they cave in to the women's demands to be treated as equal "skilled labor" to the men, the trickle down world wide would amount to a fair chunk of change. So they use their power by numbers to attempt to influence the new Prime Minister (and, as fate would have it, the leader of the Labor Party). Richard Schiff portrays Ford's agent abroad and has a wonderful toe to toe with the Labor Secretary, in a typically marvelous performance by Miranda Richardson. Richardson's Ms. Castle knows the political game, and treads lightly for a time before telling two "good old boy" aids who have been advising her to step up and stop the strike in a condescending manor, "gentlemen, you've heard the tales about fiery red-heads, well I'm here to suggest that the rumors are true. Look at my hair and let me tell you that I'm tired of your pompous, condescending attitude; so get the hell out of my office!!" Pure Richardson with perfect delivery. The film also delves into union graft where you get to see the similarly wonderful Bob Hoskins on display, playing a shop steward and everyman, with a twinkle in his eye as he thumbs his nose at his "betters" - the union brass. Further you get a glimpse of a 1968 way of life - Ford provided the housing for their workers, also providing schooling for the children - which unfortunately allows for yet another display of class warfare as the uppity teachers look down their nose at the children of the working class. In addition, you are witness to the struggles of Hawkins family, especially concerning her relationship with her husband, a fellow Auto worker. When the plant is shut down due to there no longer being any upholstery for the assembly line, it takes a toll, especially in light of hubby having to man more and more of the family chores as Hawkins is running about campaigning. There's a scene in which he complains to her, and says that while he supports what she's trying to accomplish, he's feeling taken advantage of. He then tries to lay it on that he's a good guy, hardly ever in his cups, and never raising a hand to Hawkins or her children. Hawkins glares at him as if he's from another planet and utters that his behavior should be the norm. That this Nuevo suffragette movement came at the same time as the civil rights movement in the US is no coincidence, and it makes me wonder... if all the protests from that period could have such a sweeping effect and change, will the current "occupy" movement and backlash against non-representational government net a similar result? Wouldn't that be something!

- paulsandberg, Friday, December 16, 2011

4 stars

A wonderful look into a time and a place, Made in Dagenham on the surface tells the tale of how 187 women auto workers (they ran Singer sewing machines all day making upholstery for Ford) banded together and brought about equal pay for women. But looking beyond that admirable feat, you have a nice look into the glass ceiling, good old boy network, as well as the standard mores of the time where women were considered second class citizens. The film may be a bit too "bright, shiny day" as it seems Sally Hawkins simply cannot do otherwise, but while you may be wishing to delve into more pathos, the story told here is a good one and it's told well. Simply from a historical perspective... 50,000 employees at Ford's Dagenham plant (and many more at another plant in Liverpool) - that makes up a considerable work force - something that perhaps Americans were unaware of back then, as Ford was the #1 company on the planet. That Ford employed so many people world wide makes the backbones of the story all the more creditable - from Ford's standpoint, if they cave in to the women's demands to be treated as equal "skilled labor" to the men, the trickle down world wide would amount to a fair chunk of change. So they use their power by numbers to attempt to influence the new Prime Minister (and, as fate would have it, the leader of the Labor Party). Richard Schiff portrays Ford's agent abroad and has a wonderful toe to toe with the Labor Secretary, in a typically marvelous performance by Miranda Richardson. Richardson's Ms. Castle knows the political game, and treads lightly for a time before telling two "good old boy" aids who have been advising her to step up and stop the strike in a condescending manor, "gentlemen, you've heard the tales about fiery red-heads, well I'm here to suggest that the rumors are true. Look at my hair and let me tell you that I'm tired of your pompous, condescending attitude; so get the hell out of my office!!" Pure Richardson with perfect delivery. The film also delves into union graft where you get to see the similarly wonderful Bob Hoskins on display, playing a shop steward and everyman, with a twinkle in his eye as he thumbs his nose at his "betters" - the union brass. Further you get a glimpse of a 1968 way of life - Ford provided the housing for their workers, also providing schooling for the children - which unfortunately allows for yet another display of class warfare as the uppity teachers look down their nose at the children of the working class. In addition, you are witness to the struggles of Hawkins family, especially concerning her relationship with her husband, a fellow Auto worker. When the plant is shut down due to there no longer being any upholstery for the assembly line, it takes a toll, especially in light of hubby having to man more and more of the family chores as Hawkins is running about campaigning. There's a scene in which he complains to her, and says that while he supports what she's trying to accomplish, he's feeling taken advantage of. He then tries to lay it on that he's a good guy, hardly ever in his cups, and never raising a hand to Hawkins or her children. Hawkins glares at him as if he's from another planet and utters that his behavior should be the norm. That this Nuevo suffragette movement came at the same time as the civil rights movement in the US is no coincidence, and it makes me wonder... if all the protests from that period could have such a sweeping effect and change, will the current "occupy" movement and backlash against non-representational government net a similar result? Wouldn't that be something!

- paulsandberg, Friday, December 16, 2011