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Amazing grace - Ioan Gruffudd, Romola Garai, Rufus Sewell, Michael Gambon, Michael Apted

Threat advisory: Elevated - Significant risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Behind the song you love is a story you will never forget.

From acclaimed director Michael Apted comes Amazing grace, a moving historical epic about the life of anti-slavery pioneer William Wilberforce (Ioan Gruffudd).

Amazing grace follows Wilberforce's career through his 20s and 30s, as he and his fellow humanitarians make the issue of slavery a talking point, not only in political circles, but also throughout the country. They wage the first modern political campaign, using petitions, boycotts, mass meetings and even badges with slogans to take their message to the country at large.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Amazing grace theatrical one sheet imageAmazing grace theatrical one sheet image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film drama true UK slavery protest politics law repeal British Empire

Persons of interest

  • Stephen Campbell Moore .... James Stephen
  • Benedict Cumberbatch .... Pitt the Younger
  • Nicholas Day .... William Dolben
  • Nicholas Farrell .... Henry Thornton
  • Albert Finney .... John Newton
  • Michael Gambon .... Lord Charles Fox
  • Romola Garai .... Barbara Wilberforce
  • Georgie Glen .... Hannah More
  • Ioan Gruffudd .... William Wilberforce
  • Ciarán Hinds .... Lord Tarleton
  • Toby Jones .... Duke of Clarence
  • Sylvestra Le Touzel .... Marianne Thornton
  • Youssou N'Dour .... Oloudaqh Equiano
  • Bill Paterson .... Lord Dundas
  • Richard Ridings .... Speaker
  • Rufus Sewell .... Thomas Clarkson
  • Jeremy Swift .... Richard
  • Steven Knight .... Screenwriter
  • Michael Apted .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

It's a tad ironic to see Ioan Gruffudd being William Wilberforce at the same time that he's also being Horatio Hornblower; Horry and Willy both live at the (prolonged) height of the British Empire (on which the sun never sets). That distracted me somewhat while I was watching Amazing grace but only somewhat: the drama of the struggle to free all humans from slavery is more than enough to overcome.

On top of that, there's all the marvellous old world architecture and antiques. Wilberforce has a table with a polished shine that has to be seen to be believed. How I yearn for the days when things were made to one day be old rather than replaced. Planned obsolescence sucks. Capitalism sucks!

Getting back to the movie, Ioan and Romola Garai have a chemistry that sparkles. You will so want them to get together. Ioan and Benedict Cumberbatch (now there's a good English name) also have a chemistry, that of young friends who become old friends. And if you like historical detail, there're golf, horse riding, servants, clothing, transport, ships, powdered wigs, chandeliers and, of course, slavery. Most people believe that slavery is bad. Amazing grace is less about how bad it is than about how hard it is to make a paradigm shift, especially when there's money involved. And power. And politicians.

Bloody politicians.

Even were this film not based on truth it would be a good drama, as it is, it's a very good drama. I heartily recommend it.

The drama, true, UK movie Amazing grace is directed by Michael Apted and stars Ioan Gruffudd, Romola Garai, Rufus Sewell, Michael Gambon.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Languages: English
  • Picture: Widescreen
  • Special features:
    • Commentaries: Director Michael Apted
    • Documentaries: B-roll footage
    • Featurettes: How sweet the sound
    • Interviews: Cast and crew
    • Music video: Chris Tomlin
    • Trailers: Theatrical

Government security censorship classification

PG (Mild themes)

Surveillance time

118 minutes (1:58 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 26 July 2007
DVD rental: 27 December 2007
DVD retail: 27 December 2007

Cinema surveillance images

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