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Friday, January 04, 2013

56 Up!

As you may know, the Up series is a series of eight fascinating documentary films that has tracked the lives of fourteen English schoolchildren since 1964, when they were seven years old. Every seven years, the director Michael Apted releases a new documentary that checks in on their increasingly varied lives (when they're aged 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 42, 49...). The children all came from very different socio-economic backgrounds, and the director, Michael Apted, wanted to see how this would affect their futures.

The documentary films are wildly compelling—you follow these people as they graduate from school, move cities, find jobs, lose jobs, have children, get married, have affairs, dash their dreams, find happiness, lose their way, face whatever life brings. Each episode, you think you know where their lives are headed, but I've been shocked, thrilled and devastated to see certain updates. The most recent installment—56 Up—came out in England this past May, and I've been waiting with baited breath for it to reach the United States.

Well, 56 Up is finally released today! (Right now I see showtimes for just New York, but it should be hitting more cities on January 18th.) Film critic Roger Ebert called the films, "Brilliant! The 'Up' series is on my list of the 10 greatest films of all time." He also wrote a great overview here.

Will you see it? I highly, highly recommend the series.

P.S. 19 more fantastic documentaries...

94 comments:

Shruti Kapoor said...

Never heard of it but sounds very interesting. Will def. watch it...Thanks for the information!! Let us know your reviews once you see it :)

Danielle Peterson said...

www.firstrunfeatures.com/56up

**Opens January 4 in New York
**Opens January 18 in Los Angeles
**Opens January 25 in San Diego & Hartford, CT
**Opens February 1 in Chicago
**Opens February 8 in Boston, Seattle, Minneapolis & Atlanta
**Opens February 15 in San Francisco, Berkeley, San Rafael, Denver,
Washington DC, St. Louis & Bellingham, WA
**Opens February 22 in Philadelphia & Cleveland
**Opens March 15 in Houston
**Opens April 11 in Madison, WI

caitlin said...

yay! i LOVE the UP series! my boyfriend and i watched them all right in a row last winter, and i've been waiting for this one to finally come out. i find them endlessly fascinating!

Kelly said...

Oh my gosh, I'm so excited! Feb 8th in Minneapolis! Wohoo!

C said...

Wow, thanks for introducing us to this. I have been scouring the web for links to watch it.
www.thecrookedlake.blogspot.ca

Nicole said...

Oh love this series so much. I always go to see each new one with my best film buddy.

simone antoniazzi said...

I've watched most of these, cannot believe it's now "56 Up"!! They are absolutely fascinating....quite sad some of them too.

I will keep a look out, thanks :)

MrsLittleJeans said...

Thank you for introducing this...and thanks for the schedule...I am looking forward to seeing this.

Erika said...

I've heard of this series, but I haven't watched it yet. Perhaps I'll start on it this weekend. Those little kids are so, so cute!! I kinda wish we still dressed our kids like they did in the 50's/60's.

Joy U said...

My parents began taking me to see these when I was a kid and I'm totally hooked on them. I finally got around to 49 the other week and found it interesting how difficult they find these interviews to be, how many of them found the documentary to be an interruption to their lives. But they're endlessly fascinating, and they give me lots of hope, as many of them seem to have found a great deal of happiness as they've grown older.

Unknown said...

Thanks for the heads up! I'm eager to see it. Here's another great documentary you should check out -- Searching for Sugar Man. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2125608/

I was so impressed that I saw it twice in two days!

myheartscontentblog.com said...

My Husband loves this series (we're British) but I suspect he doesn't know the final one is out. It'll make his day, thanks!

sequinsandsass.com said...

As an American, I find the Up series a really fascinating look at the British social classes.. can't wait to see the latest!

Nina said...

I just saw the trailer last night and I can't wait to see it! I first heard about the series in college, then forgot about it, then couldn't find it when I finally remembered to check it out. I'm so excited to see it!

Margaret said...

For C and anyone else interested in catching up on the series, you can stream all the installments on Netflix! That's how I discovered them several years ago, and I was instantly hooked. It's incredible how riveting -- and moving -- it can be simply to observe the passage of time in ordinary lives... I've been so excited about the latest installment; thanks, Danielle, for the wide-release info!

Angharad said...

I absolutely love the Seven Up series! Watched various installments growing up and it's just addictive, isn't it? I blogged about it last month actually -- I'm tempted to re-watch the previous seven before this one is out! Here's a list of other cities it's playing in: http://firstrunfeatures.com/56up_playdates.html

Sarah said...

Joanna, would you recommend seeing the first 6 films before seeing this one at the IFC? They look fascinating!

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...

great news! my boyfriend and i were already planning to watch the entire series (on Netflix!) this winter. i'm putting the Chicago date for the 56 screening in my calendar as a finale to our viewing.

might i recommend His & Hers, a documentary focusing on Irish women and their relationships with men throughout life - fathers, brothers, boyfriends, husbands, and sons. it is such a wonderful and touching documentary about how life and love evolves.

here's the trailer.

www.leanerbythelake.com

Lejla said...

Will take a look at those. Thanks for the recommendation!

http://lejlatravels.blogspot.com/

French Cannes Cannes said...

This sounds like something I would love! Maybe I'll be able to find it in France!

Lilac In May said...

I am a 48 year old Brit and have followed this as long as I can remember - it is the best documentary series, it would never be commisioned now - funding, permissions etc but it is brilliant. Go see it!

Lilac In May said...

Yes Sarah, the best way to enjoy 56 UP is to see what goes before, without the back stories you wont enjoy it as much.

brittney elizabeth said...

I've watched them all on Netflix and can't wait to this next installment! Thanks for the info!

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...

thanks for sharing these!

L Schelvan said...

Thanks for sharing this announcement. I too have been waiting for the "56" installment; sadly, it likely won't make it to Montana theaters so I'll have to wait for a DVD release!

ms. vino said...

I watched these back to back when the last installment came out and found it riveting! I was especially fascinated by Neil and am wondering what has happened to him in the last 7 years. Also interesting is seeing how the class system in Britain is still very much prevalent.

J+H @ Beyond The Stoop said...

so excited for this one!! gonna book my tix for the IFC center soon :)

jane said...

i started watching the series on netflix after your previous post and now i'm hooked! i'll be watching on the 18th when it opens in LA. can't wait!

junebug said...

Just added 7 Up to my instant queue. Sounds amazing.

Sharon de Jager said...

I watched it when it aired last year(sounds strange to say last year!) it's a fascinating insight into the lives of ordinary people through the years,and I agree,you think you know the outcome,but often there are surprises and disappointments!

Jill-Marie Parrella Vaughn said...

These look fascinating! I know what Mark and I will be doing this weekend! Catching up on the first films.

Oddly enough, I became overwhelmingly sad watching the trailer. Maybe it's the passing of time and how short life truly is.

Thanks for the heads up!

Happy Weekend!

bisbee said...

I've read about these and seen several of the films. It is facinating...I'll have to catch up on those I missed before I check this latest one out!

Mirela said...

Absolutely will watch it!! It looks SO interesting! And if it doesn't come to Portland, I'll wait (expectantly!) for the DVD release...

Scout and Rice said...

I felt a little sad watching the trailer too. It's a bit sad to think they will probably have passed away in my lifetime, and there will be a documentary about their passing.

Jade Sheldon said...

I'm a huge fan of the Up series! If it makes it to Portland, I will definitely be seeing it!

Chimmy said...

Thank you, Danielle! I will head out in February when it comes to DC!

dc said...

So excited, thanks for the heads up!!

Donna said...

This is one of my favorite documentary series! I did an entire course (psychology of the personality) in college based on this series! So excited to see 56!!

www.soyouagree.com

Angela B. said...

Thanks for the info! Glad it's coming to Houston.

GIULIA said...

i had no idea! this the kind of project i dreamed of doing, i'm so happy someone actually did it!

stilllifeinbuenosaires said...

I discovered the Up Series in the last year. (Perfect timing for this release, right?) I am so glad that Susie is back, and I can't wait to see Neil's update. He is one of my favorites.

Lindsay said...

Joanna,

Where you find information on all the documentaries that you post about? Is there a certain website or newsletter that your receive or just word of mouth/random? Would love to be more on top of these!

Thanks!

The Egg said...

this is absolutely brilliant!!
can't wait to see it

xo the egg out west.

Francesca said...

I feel like I've been growing up with these kids too, I've been watching since I was a child so I always want to know how they're doing. There's one particular man who always breaks my heart - neil. What I find so interesting is how one decision, one bit of good luck or bad luck can change the course of someone's life. on the upside - i love how some of the women look better today than they did 30 years ago! There's hope for us all!

Manda said...

Holy Moly!
I hadn't even heard of this.
So amazingly excited about it! :)

Gracias for sharing.
- Eat Cake

Liska Cole said...

i saw this on netflix, i think, a couple wks ago. it's beautiful, but slightly depressing...
that little boy in the top picture, is just the cutest.

Chianne Hood said...

I've never heard of these documentaries but it seems really cool! Thanks for sharing!

http://thehonestfox.blogspot.com/

Chloe Moon said...

Wow I've never heard of this! I have to check it out when i get home and have sound on my computer!! =)

Ergo - Blog

Aja Lake [the gold hat.] said...

oh my. that is wildly compelling! i can't wait to check them out. xx

Aja Lake
the gold hat.

Addy Hanson said...

I looovveee a good compelling documentary! I will have to check these out. :)
http://addyspring.blogspot.com

teeny84 said...

I'm so interested but have no idea where to watch the past episodes! I'm in Canada, so it's not on netflix here and amazon doesn't have any of the dvds. Any suggestions? Is it on itunes?

camille_iman said...

I remember watching these films in psychology classes! I had no idea there would be another installment, excited!

cleartheway said...

I'm a sucker for documentaries about anything and everything. I just love learning through film. Thanks for showing me that this installment has been released!

Kate from Clear the Way

Loesie. said...

What a coincidence you wrote about this today!
It airs here in the Netherlands tonight!
Watched in college, love it!


Notes from Holly St. said...

wow...that is fascinating! i'll definitely be looking into watching the entire series. thank you!

Sharla said...

I've never heard of these! Want to see them all now!

Liz said...

wow! I want to check them out, especially after reading this article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/04/science/study-in-science-shows-end-of-history-illusion.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=0

We even shock ourselves when we think about our own lives!

stilllifeinbuenosaires said...

Try your local library!

vosges paris said...

What a coincidence I just watched this documentary on television this evening ;) Loved it.@

Ceri said...

I've watched this all my life (I'm British) and look forward to every new series with great anticipation. I find Neil's life story particularly heartbreaking. He was such a beautiful and appealing little boy. I always hope his situation has improved and he has found happiness.

GKDavie said...

It will be playing in Ottawa, Ontario at the Mayfair Theatre really soon too!

*Jan 18-21 as well as 23rd

Linnéa said...

This is such a great idea! I heard of it for the first time and I need to see them now.
And I would love to share another great documentary with you: Breathing Earth - Susumu Shingus dream by Thomas Riedelsheimer. http://vimeo.com/55090719
He is a german filmmaker, maybe you know one of his films about Andy Goldsworthy (Rivers and tides) or Evelyn Glennie (Touch the sound). He also has a very interesting project called 'Be invited' where he shares a new little film every monday with the purpose to give yourself a pause and maybe some inspiration.
http://www.be-invited.de/Home.html
Hope you enjoy this as well! Thanks for your great recommendations Joanna!

Seasick Sarah said...

I love love love this series! It's so beautiful and heartbreaking. Can't wait to see the new installment. <3

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eKim said...

What a coincidence!!! I've never heard of this until I accidentally came across it on YouTube a month ago and thought "Wow. I love the proper way these English children speak. So cute". Never knew it was an ongoing documentary. I will have to check the rest of them out on Netflix.

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Erica said...

I LOVE this series. As an anthropologist it is on the top of my charts.

Carlyn Brody said...

I love the series, I started watching it a couple of years ago. I love seeing how the children have turned out, particularly Neil, Tony and the girls.

everydayillustrated said...

Thank you for the heads-up. I love this series! It is so interesting to see how everyone turned out.

Ms A About said...

I had no idea this amazing series was shown around the world (I'm in the UK). Wow.

I saw 56 Up on tv and I noticed how the poverty aspect is still there (good old class system) but people don't seem as "piss poor" as they did in the black and white ones!

Prof Robert Winston has been doing a similar child development series called called 'Child of Our Time' with kids born in 2000. It's shown every 3 years I think.

Crèmebrûlivin said...

WHEEEE! It's crazy to look forward to a movie for YEARS! I really miss living in New York right now, I have to wait another month.

alma said...

My husband did some research in school recently after watching this series. He ended up contacting one of the "kids" now a professor in Wisconsin. He replied back and was very helpful answering questions my husband had for him! Cool thing:)

Befxx said...

"The most recent installment—56 Up—came out in England this past May"

Nooo! It came out in all of the UK! Not just England lol. Sorry to be picky, but I hate the generalisation. The UK is more than just England ;) xx

Nikki said...

Thank you thank you thank you! I have watched the UP series for years so I'm so glad to have stumbled upon your blog.

r girn said...

Thanks for the recommendation. I just got this from the library. Looks so interesting!

Jessica Quadra Photography said...

My husband and I watched these all a few years ago after you recommended them and were hooked. they are fascinating! We'll look forward to seeing 56 up.

Polly Rowan said...

came out last year in the UK. Really good! xx

Judy said...

I had never heard of this, and it sounds amazing! I really, really want to watch it. Thanks so much for sharing.

moonshinejunkyard said...

about eight years ago my friends and i got obsessed with this series and got together a couple times a week to watch them ALL. we were glued. then 49 up came out, so satisfying to pick right up where we left off. i can't believe it's already been seven more years and i am so excited to see what's become of these old friends.

A Cat From London said...

Very exciting project! Thank you for sharing. We are living in London and never heard before about this series. Same day of your post we ordered 56 up and the box of the previous movies. Can not wait to wath! Thank you again.

A Cat From London said...

We just bought from amazon.uk the box of the first 6 DVDs and the 56up. Maybe they can ship to Canada.

Slone Ranger said...

Can't wait until it comes to DC! Sunday Morning did a great profile on the "Up" series.

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C said...

Thanks Margaret!

Pearl said...

Have you seen this recent interview on the huffington post? http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/56-up-reality-tv/50eb802078c90a05df0000c1. came across it because one of my friends is one of the guys in it randomly.

excited to see the latest installment! Thanks for sharing otherwise I would have missed this entirely!

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A Cat From London said...

We just watched whole series and we are very very impressed. Thank you again for sharing with us. Bests.

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