Certificate: 12A

The story of an ordinary man, reduced by years of oppressive office routine to a shadow existence, who at the eleventh hour makes a supreme effort to turn his dull life into something wonderful - into one he can say has been lived to the full.

1953. A London shattered by WWII is still recovering. Williams (Bill Nighy), a veteran civil servant, is an important cog within the city’s bureaucracy as it struggles to rebuild. Buried under paperwork at the office, lonely at home, his life has long felt empty and meaningless.

Then a shattering medical diagnosis forces him to take stock - and to try and grasp fulfilment before it goes beyond reach. At a seaside resort, chaperoned by a local decadent (Tom Burke), he flirts with hedonism before rejecting it as his solution. Back in London he finds himself drawn to the natural vitality of Margaret, a young woman who once worked under his supervision and is now determined to spread her wings.

Then one evening he is struck by a revelation - one as simple as it is profound - and with a new energy, and the help of Peter, an idealistic new recruit to his department, he sets about creating a legacy for the next generation.

Contains moderate sex references
Drama, Period
Running time
102 minutes
Bill Nighy, Aimee Lou Wood, Adrian Rawlins, Alex Sharp, Hubert Burton, Oliver Chris, Michael Cochrane, Anant Varman
Directed by
Oliver Hermanus