Nigel Cole’s “Made in Dagenham” is the latest installment in that sturdy genre the London Times‘ Kevin Maher once shortened to “FGBF”: “The Germans have given us the paranoid depths of Expressionism, the Italians created Neo-Realism,” he sighed. “The French have perfected brooding Melodramatic Existentialism, while the British bask in the bathetic glow of a plucky little yokel, a couple of nude scenes and a happy-clappy sing-song finale.”
Like it or not, the FGBF trundles on, picking up award nominations and providing a safe, soft-cornered option for when you end up watching a movie with your parents over the holidays. “Dagenham” is a perfectly acceptable example of a FGBF, based on a true story, its well-acted uplift shot through with some authentic threads of economic alarm but never, of course, an unhappy ending. Here’s a guide to some of the other FGBFs that have rolled through the art houses over the last two decades.
*A British production, even though it’s technically set in Ireland.