- Directors: Peter Cattaneo
- Producers: Uberto Pasolini
- Writers: Simon Beaufoy
- Genres: Comedy, Music
- Actors: Robert Carlyle, Mark Addy, William Snape, Steve Huison, Tom Wilkinson, Paul Barber, Hugo Speer
The year is 1972, and the place is “Sheffield… the beating heart of Britain’s industrial north”, as described by the narrator in a short film visualising the city’s economic prosperity, borne out of Sheffield’s highly successful steel industry. The film shows busy steel mills, producing everything from kitchen cutlery to tensile girders, along with the run-off from the mills… successful retail establishments, nightclubs, and attractive housing. The film concludes with “thanks to steel, Sheffield really is a city on the move!”
Fast forward to a quarter century later to the same city but in a far different light than that of the early-1970s. The once-successful steel mills of then have grown brown with rust, rolling equipment has been removed, and the lines are silent. Gary “Gaz” Schofield (Robert Carlyle) and Dave Horsefall (Mark Addy), desperate to make some money, are inside their former workplace trying to get a steel beam out of the mill with the intent of selling it. They attempt to get the beam out of the mill by securing it to the roof of a car, which promptly sinks. Undaunted, they try to salvage the beam, but their attempts prove futile.
Gaz is later informed by his ex-wife that she intends to take court action against him for the child support payments that he’s failed to make since losing his job. Compromising the situation further is Gaz’s son, Nathan (William Snape), who reluctantly spends time with Gaz. He grows tired of his father’s seeming lack of motivation to do something with his life and get his act together.
With not much left to lose, and a sold-out show, the men decide to go for it for one night (including Gerald, who has got the job from the interview he thought he’d failed). Dave, having re-gained his confidence with help from his wife, joins the rest of the group literally minutes before they go on stage. The film ends with the group on stage in front of a packed house, stripping to Tom Jones’ version of You Can Leave Your Hat On (their hats being the final item removed).