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Kenneth Branagh's Belfast


A coming of age comedy-drama written and directed by Kenneth Branagh, Belfast is a semi-autobiographical film set in the Northern Irish capital between 1969 and 1970. It chronicles six months in the life of a working-class family as they navigate a violent period in Northern Irish history known as The Troubles.

Branagh himself was born in Belfast in 1960. He left Northern Ireland for Berkshire in southern England with his family at the age of nine. It was a difficult transition, as he recalls.

I grew up in a place where it seemed to rain a lot, but there was plenty of sunshine in the hearts of the people. We laughed a lot about daft things and we held each other when we cried about serious things, and generally as a community we were there for each other, for everyone.

Branagh began writing the film during lockdown, which in the UK began in late March and went on until May 2020.

The film is shot in black and white with bursts of vivid colour.