Quadrophenia is set in 1965 during the mods and rockers era and shows just how powerful those cults were and how it meant so much to be able to 'belong'. The film tells the story of Jimmy, a young mod played by Phil Daniels, and follows a short period in his life as he starts to grow up.
Like a lot of young working-class men at the time, Jimmy dislikes his job and the people he works with and yearns for freedom. He wants nothing else but to listen to rock music, particularly The Who, and ride about London on his scooter with his mod friends. He needs to feel accepted and be part of the growing mod culture. The film makes a lot of the rivalry between the mods and the rockers at the time and Jimmy and his friends soon get into fights and arguments with the rockers.
Quadrophenia climaxes with a mods and rockers battle on Brighton beach during the August Bank Holiday and there are plenty of violent scenes with a lot of swearing. It is here in Brighton that Jimmy finally gets together with his mod girl, albeit for a very brief moment. To Jimmy, the aftermath of the Brighton battle was the beginning of the end of his illusory life. He sees his hero 'Ace' finally give up on this immature life and take a job as a Bell Boy in the Grand Hotel, Brighton. To him, this was the end. He sees his girlfriend Steph go off with another young mod. His prized scooter is badly damaged in a road accident and one by one his friends start to move on. Jimmy now struggles to come to terms with reality - that life moves on and people grow up.
Quadrophenia is a very well made film and the acting is great. It tries hard to stay with the facts and to show what life was like in the 1960's as a mod. It does this very well, like a piece of real history. Quadrophenia is now a cult film and people still spend time seeking out the film's locations in London and Brighton, and there are even special organised tours of locations for dedicated fans.
Film and Movie Information
Quadrophenia was released by The Who Films in 1979 and was directed by Frank Roddam. The prncipal stars were Phil Daniels, Leslie Ash and Philip Davis. The movie was filmed in Eastmancolor, in London and Brighton, UK.