The Arbor

Sunday 30th January 5:00 PM


One of the most remarkable films of 2010, nominated for six BIFA Awards, this genre-defying piece is set in Brafferton Arbor, the area of Bradford where late playwright Andrea Dunbar grew up. Dunbar, author of harsh, unflinchingly realistic plays (Rita, Sue and Bob Too!) about life in The Arbor, continued to live on the estate until her early death in 1990. For two years director Clio Barnard interviewed people who knew Dunbar, and now has used actors who lip-synch to recordings made with the playwright and her family, largely concentrating on the troubled relationship with her daughter Lorraine. This footage is mixed with newly filmed excerpts from Dunbar’s first play (also called The Arbor), as acted in the streets where she grew up.

Number 5 on Sight & Sound’s 'Top Ten of 2010'.


“Moving, bold, unconventional and impeccably staged, The Arbor is a worthy tribute to a powerfully artistic voice.”

Anna Smith, Empire

“Revealing, moving and entirely individual.”

Jonathan Romney, Uncut

“A compelling insight into a challenging woman.”



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