Dir: David Batty | Writers: Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais | Cast: Michael Caine, Joan Collins, Lulu, Paul McCartney, Twiggy, Roger Daltrey, Marianne Faithfull, Sandie Shaw, Mary Quant, Barbara Hulanicki | UK | Doc | 85′ |
As narrator and co-producer, Michael Caine turns the camera on himself in a filmic flip through the Swinging Sixties charting how he his talented contempories transformed Britain and having a dig at the class establishment into the bargain.
Assembled over two years, MY GENERATION is directed by David Batty with scripters Ian La Frenais and Dick Clement ensuring an enjoyable ride through fabulous archive footage showcasing Caine’s contempories: photographer trio: Terry Donovan, Duffy and David Bailey; fashion models such as Twiggy, Jean Shrimpton and Joanna Lumley and musicians: Roger Daltrey, Paul McCartney and Mick Jagger.
Caine, now 84, contemplates the factors that caused the loosening up in the postwar set-up citing The Pill and advent of Grammar schools as primary factors for change, while Marianne Faithfull suggests an improved diet. Whatever the case, they were all determined to have a good time and break down barriers bringing in a more colourful era and putting London on the map as a beacon of youth culture, as everyone flocked to the capital. Caine, who rose from solid working class stock as Maurice Micklewhite, uses the film to attack posh middle class acting talent ridiculing the likes of cult classics Brief Encounter (1946) and having a swipe at Norman Wisdom who wasn’t generous to work with despite his humble origins. Paul McCartney claims, “suddenly people realised the working class wasn’t as thick as it looked and it had talent.”
Caine goes on to suggest that the advent of drugs brought an end to the Swinging Sixties although stresses he only smoked marijuana once as it made him laugh for five hours and he couldn’t remember his lines although he makes it clear: “I don’t feel nostalgia. I never look back. I feel extraordinarily lucky, not about my talent or anything, but about the timing,” MY GENERATION is an entertaining romp showing how these legendary characters made the Sixties happen and made their fortunes at the same time.MT
VENICE FILM FESTIVAL UNTIL 9 SEPTEMBER 2017