In this allegorical story, a revolution led by pupil Mick Travis takes place at an old established private school in England.

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(screenplay), (original script: "Crusaders") | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
David Wood ...
Johnny: Crusaders
Richard Warwick ...
Wallace: Crusaders
Christine Noonan ...
The Girl: Crusaders
Rupert Webster ...
Bobby Philips: Crusaders
Robert Swann ...
Rowntree: Whips
Hugh Thomas ...
Denson: Whips
Michael Cadman ...
Fortinbras: Whips
Peter Sproule ...
Barnes: Whips
Peter Jeffrey ...
Headmaster: Staff
...
General Denson: Staff
...
Mr. Kemp: Staff
Mona Washbourne ...
Matron: Staff
Mary MacLeod ...
Mrs. Kemp: Staff (as Mary Macleod)
Geoffrey Chater ...
Chaplain: Staff
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Storyline

In an indictment of the British public school system, we follow Mick and his mostly younger friends through a series of indignities and occasionally abuse as any fond feelings toward these schools are destroyed. When Mick and his friends rebel, violently, the catch phrase, "which side would you be on" becomes quite stark. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Which side will you be on?

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

X | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

2 August 1969 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Se...  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mick and the Girl rolling on the café floor naked and making love was Malcolm McDowell's idea (because he wanted to see his attractive co-star, Christine Noonan, for whom he admitted having a crush, in the nude.) However, when Lindsay Anderson accepted his star's suggestion, the director required McDowell to ask Noonan if she was willing to do so. (Her reply, according to McDowell, was "I don't mind.") See more »

Goofs

The Master in charge of College House comes into the Hall with the other teachers and the Whips. As they walk down to top table you can see that the boys have their doctor's notes on the tables in front of them. In the next shot, looking at the table with Bobby Phillips at the end, the papers have disappeared. See more »

Quotes

Mick Travis: I don't see what difference the speed makes... the speed of the nail...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film's opening prologue states: Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding PROVERBS IV:7 See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Virgin Suicides (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Sanctus
from the "Missa Luba" (Philips Recording)
Sung by Les Troubadours du Roi Baudouin (uncredited)
Conducted by Fr. Guido Haazen O.F.M (uncredited)
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User Reviews

 
Rejection and acceptance: Mick and Jute.
22 September 2002 | by (Liverpool, England) – See all my reviews

I watched this movie, for the umpteenth time, when it was shown on T.V. last night and was happy to see that it hasn't lost any of it's impact or relevance. Like so many other British films of the same time "if...." is a classic. The storyline, direction, location and acting are all stunning and as an allegory the film has as much to say today as it did when it was first released, onto an unsuspecting public, in the late 1960's. Much has been said by other reviewers about Lindsay Anderson, Malcolm McDowell and the film as a social satire, so there seems little point in going along those, well trodden, paths. I guess one aspect of the film, which always struck me as pivotal, but which hasn't been mentioned, is the inverse negative correlation between the story of Mick (Malcolm McDowell) and that of Jute (Sean Bury). While Mick starts out as a mild non-conformist who becomes increasingly disaffected with society, as represented by the school, Jute, who is initially an outsider, a new boy who doesn't know the rules, is gradually accepted and becomes an active member of that very same society. Mick's initial revolt is that of returning to school still sporting a moustache. But although he is flouting the rules by virtue of not being clean shaven, it is done on a purely personal level and he takes great pains to hide his facial hair from those in authority. Later his actions become, by stages, increasingly confrontational and open. Jute on the other hand is first shown as a small, almost lost, boy with large, frightened, puppy-dog eyes who doesn't even know that prefects are not addressed as "Sir", let alone the myriad of other complex rules that make up the society into which he has been thrust. Gradually we see his self assurance blossoming as he is accepted firstly by the other "scum" and later by the powers that be. The small socially isolated boy of the first scene is later seen playing an active role in a rugby match, sharing an impromptu meal with the other scum, confidently carrying a trophy in College Hall and finally taking an active part (as an altar boy) in the very celebration of traditional values that Mick has, by then, utterly rejected. A thought provoking film, which like that other celebrated allegory from the same era, "Lord of the Flies" (1963), has many levels and can be as deep as you wish it to be. Utterly Brilliant. Oh yeah and my favourite quote was from Mick when asked why he was sporting a moustache, his answer, "To hide my sins".


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