Skip to main content
Classics and discoveries from around the world, thematically programmed with special features, on a streaming service brought to you by the Criterion Collection.
Criterion Collection Edition #561
Named one of the ten best British films of the century by the British Film Institute, Ken Loach’s KES is cinema’s quintessential portrait of working-class Northern England. Billy (an astonishingly naturalistic David Bradley) is a fifteen-year-old miner’s son whose close bond with a wild kestrel provides him with a spiritual escape from his dead-end life. KES brought to the big screen the sociopolitical engagement Loach had established in his work for the BBC, and pushed the British “angry young man” film of the sixties into a new realm of authenticity, using real locations and nonprofessional actors. Loach’s poignant coming-of-age drama remains the now legendary director’s most beloved and influential film.