Blue Jean 15


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From the archive

This film was last shown on 2 March 2023

Directed by Georgia Oakley, the short film director of Little Bird and We Did Not Fall from the Sky. Blue Jean, Oakley’s feature debut takes us back to England, 1988 where Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government is about to pass Section 28. A law stigmatising homosexuality in education and forcing Jean (Rosy McEwen), a P.E. teacher at a secondary school in north-east, to live a double life.

It’s crucial her employers don’t find out she’s gay, but at the same time, the secrecy is alienating her from her own life. As pressure mounts, the arrival of a new girl (Lucy Halliday) at Jean’s school catalyses a crisis that challenges her to her core. It’s easy to forget just how toxically homophobic British life was in the not-too-distant past, and Oakley’s film is a pleasing ode to queer resilience at the especially poisonous moment of the Section 28 ruling. A forthright Thatcher-era period piece prompting reflections on our national treatment of homosexuality, placing this past in dialogue with the present, Blue Jean is also a beautifully photographed, wonderfully complex and poignant character study of a woman unsure how she wants to proceed – or be perceived – in her own life.

“Keenly felt and fiercely authentic” – Screen International

Find out about our special screening of Blue Jean followed by a Reclaim The Frame post-film discussion.


Georgia Oakley
United Kingdom
1 hour 37 minutes
English, Descriptive Subtitles (SDH)
Kerrie Hayes, Lucy Halliday, Lydia Page, Rosy McEwen


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