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The fifth in a series of English documentaries made since 1964 that chart the lives of several people at seven-year intervals; Michael Apted, a researcher on the first film, directed all the subsequent films. As Dave Kehr has previously remarked, the series as a whole can be seen from an English perspective as a demonstration of the rigidity of the class system, though this is far from the only perspective one can bring to the material. Significantly, some of the participants declined to be interviewed for this installment, but what seems most conspicuously absent is any inquiry into the quality of the interviewers’ questions over the past 28 years. There’s certainly plenty of food for thought here, but most of it is served raw rather than cookedmost of the significance of the development of faces, physiques, aspirations, and attitudes over three decades is left to the subjects themselves (1992). (JR)

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