“A multi-layered documentary that could have been either a puff piece or a hatchet job but ultimately was neither – a superb film”
Two days before Christmas 2018, a loyal group of a little over 200,000 tuned in to a BBC Four documentary about a 1980s boyband.
Fulwell 73’s 90-minute film, which revolved around the reconciliation of Matt and Luke Goss after the pair of brothers had barely spoken in 25 years, went on to snowball into a bona fide, word-of-mouth festive hit.
A few days after its initial TX, BBC iPlayer viewing helped the doc enthral a cumulative consolidated audience of almost 1.4 million, with an additional 1 million tuning in for a BBC Two repeat in late January.
The musical brothers’ honesty and openness was key to Bros: After The Screaming Stops, and its success came from a host of laugh-out-loud sequences that spread across the internet and provoked true watercooler moments.
A more serious story about reconciliation and family issues underpinned the film, which was shot in 100 days as the Goss brothers geared up for a comeback performance at London’s O2.
One judge encapsulated the way in which Fulwell 73 avoided falling into cliche, calling it “a multi-layered documentary that could have been either a puff piece or a hatchet job but ultimately was neither – a superb film”.
A second paid tribute to the producers for their “rare deftness” in creating a film that was simultaneously poignant and very funny.