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Ellen (2016)

TV-MA | | Drama | TV Movie 1 September 2016
0:41 | Trailer
A tearaway teenage girl trying to take control of her life forms an amazing and unbreakable bond with a new friend. But can Ellen avoid becoming just another statistic?


Mahalia Belo


Sarah Quintrell
6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Credited cast:
Jessica Barden ... Ellen
Yasmin Monet Prince ... Kayla
Joe Dempsie ... Jason
Jaime Winstone ... Nicole
Charlie Creed-Miles ... Leon
Johann Myers ... Graham
Amelda Brown Amelda Brown ... Nan
Xirone Russell Xirone Russell ... Jimmy Bird
Christian Patterson Christian Patterson ... Jack
Anita Reynolds Anita Reynolds ... Linda
Laura Bayston ... Barmaid
Radoslaw Kaim ... Man at Party (as Rad Kaim)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Joanna van Kampen ... Woman


A tearaway teenage girl, at war with her mum, and trying to take control of her life, forms an amazing and unbreakable bond with a new friend. They raise hell, stick two fingers up at the world, and laugh like they never have before... but can Ellen avoid becoming just another statistic?

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis










Release Date:

1 September 2016 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Touchpaper Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Bad Girls
Written by M.I.A., Danja and Marcella Araica
Performed by M.I.A.
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User Reviews

Unraveling the life of a vulnerable teenager
3 October 2017 | by adina_mooreSee all my reviews

The heightened tragedy Ellen (2016), a one-off drama on channel 4, which I believe was beautifully written and directed by Sarah Quintrell and Mahalia Belo. It is set in south east London and directed at teenagers and adults and highlights concerns in society today.

The main character Ellen, played by Jessica Barden, adheres to the archetype of chavs in a gritty portrayal of life in an urban estate. Clothed in the stereotypical knocked off trainers, clothes and living in a council house. With a discouraging, dysfunctional family and no father figure she is forced to grow up quickly. As a consequence, she is exposed to such explicit things at a young age – drugs and alcohol.

Underage sex and grooming are the two moral panics presented in this drama as the vulnerable teenager is taken advantage of by the one person who she had confided in after the death of a loving family member. To me the camera angles were very ambiguous throughout the short film, however this maybe a deliberate act to show Ellen's uncertainty towards relationships as with best friend Kayla who we establish just wants the best for Ellen. Also, the feeling of despair she carries as she is dissatisfied with her life and people within it. Another critique of the film would be the ending as I believe it did not disclose much, therefore we do not exactly know what happens to Ellen.

I admired how the film opens with a question which foreshadows what occurs at the end of the film. This added dramatic tension to the story by building anticipation about what might happen next. I would recommend it to others as I believe it raises awareness of young people in our society who are disregarded when going through such events.

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