Updated: Friday, 7th August 2020 @ 1:30pm

Northern Soul: Steve Coogan and Ricky Tomlinson star in Bury filmmaker's ode to spirit of '74

Northern Soul: Steve Coogan and Ricky Tomlinson star in Bury filmmaker's ode to spirit of '74

| By Vanessa Williams

A Bury film maker is aiming to capture the heart of the Northern Soul movement – and has enlisted Steve Coogan, Ricky Tomlinson and singing star Lisa Stansfield to help.

The gritty coming-of-age film, simply titled Northern Soul, tells the tale of two northern boys whose lives and wardrobes are changed forever when they discover black American soul music.  

The film has been director Elaine Constantine’s passion project over many years and is what she describes as ‘a little film that will reach a lot of people’. 

She said: “This music was ignored and didn’t resonate the way it should have done, the British embraced Northern Soul and created a family who live and die by it.”

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Former Hollyoaks actor Elliot James Langridge knew nothing about Northern Soul before his starring role in the film. 

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Elliot said: “The dancing was one of the things that took a while to get used too – I ended up losing about two stone to get into the shape that I needed to be in!”

Elliot plays the lead character of John Clarke, a disillusioned angry teenager who finds a kindred spirit when he meets Matt, played by Josh Whitehouse, in a club.

The two hook-up together and get sucked into the unusual dance craze that looks like a combination of kung fu and solo jiving complete with baggy pants and questionable hairstyle.

Elliot said: “Northern soul really is a singular experience, it’s all for you, it’s not for show, it’s all for that person’s experience while they are dancing.”

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Middleton actor Coogan also appears in the film as Elliot’s school teacher, Mr Banks.

Elliot said: “If someone had told me when I was a kid that one day I would be a lead in a film with Steve Coogan I would not have believed them, it was a nerve-wracking but brilliant experience.”

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Elliot’s portrayal of a shy moody teenager’s transformation into cocky man about town is a joy to watch.  Elaine’s eye for detail and atmospheric cinematography transports the audience right back to 1974 in a fit of nostalgia. 

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It’s almost impossible to watch the dance scenes without wanting to jump into the screen and get stuck in.

Northern Soul is on limited release in cinemas from Friday October 17.