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Topsy-Turvy 12 rating

Mike Leigh forays into period drama for this story of Gilbert and Sullivan and their risky production of The Mikado.

Drama 1999 152 mins

Director: Mike Leigh


Jim Broadbent and Allan Corduner star as Victorian opera maestros Gilbert and Sullivan. Struggling for ideas, they visit an exhibition of Japanese art that inspires a new direction and the writing of a new opus, The Mikado. They put all their efforts into mounting a risky and challenging production that they hope will renew their creative streak.

Mike Leigh was said to have stepped out of his comfort zone by deserting his usual contemporary London settings for the 19th-century story, but the result is a film that’s gone on to become one of the director’s best-loved.