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Rude Boy (1980)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

The late 1970s. London life is marked by racial tension. Returning one night to his Brixton high-rise, Ray Gange, a disaffected young man with no prospects and right-wing leanings, is arrested in Whitehall and subsequently fined for drunkenness.

Later, having scraped an acquaintance with Joe, vocalist with the left-wing group The Clash, Ray draws attention to himself by taking the stage and impulsively yelling his approval of the group during a Rock Against Racism concert at Victoria Park. As a result, he is employed by The Clash as a roadie during a Scottish tour.

Joe and Paul, the group's bass player, are arrested during violent scenes backstage at the Glasgow Appolo. The Clash appear at London's Clerkenwell Magistrates' Court and are fined for shooting racing pigeons. Ray, who has not worked well, is dropped by the group and returns to a moonlighting job at a Soho porn shop.

Four black youths, Byron, Drum, Inch and Eel, who have been under surveillance, are arrested on a conspiracy charge.

Although frequently drunk, Ray continues to hang around The Clash; he antagonises Mick, the lead guitarist, with his assertion that the group should not mix music and politics. Later in a hotel bedroom, he attempts to commandeer a bed and then departs in fury when the group dunk him in a shower.

The Clash perform 'I Fought The Law'. In Pentonville, Drum declares that a confession was beaten out of him.