Pierrepoint (film)

Pierrepoint is a 2005 British film directed by Adrian Shergold about the life of British executioner Albert Pierrepoint.

British theatrical quad
Directed byAdrian Shergold
Produced byChristine Langan
Written byJeff Pope & Bob Mills
StarringTimothy Spall
Juliet Stevenson
Eddie Marsan
Music byMartin Phipps
CinematographyDanny Cohen
Edited byTania Reddin
Distributed byRedbus Film Distribution (UK)
IFC Films (US)
Release date
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

The film premiered at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival[1] and was released in the UK on 7 April 2006.[2] In the United States, it had a limited theatrical release at three screens on 7 June 2007, grossing $21,766. It was released on DVD on 30 October 2007.[3]

Originally commissioned as a television film in 2004,[4] Pierrepoint was broadcast on ITV on 25 August 2008, when it attracted an estimated audience of 3.6 million.[5] The film was renamed Pierrepoint: The Last Hangman for its North American release, although Pierrepoint was not the last British hangman.


The film is based on the life of Britain's most prolific hangman, Albert Pierrepoint (played by Timothy Spall), from the time he is first trained for the job and accepted onto the list of the country's official hangmen in 1932 until his resignation in 1956.



The hanging scenes and the street protest scenes at the end of the film were at the Historic Dockyard, Chatham.[6]


On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 77% based on 53 reviews, with an average rating of 7/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Director Adrian Shergold doesn't shy away from the darker elements of the movie's subject, and Timothy Spall is mesmerizing as the title character."[7] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 68 out of 100, based on 15 critics, indicating "generally favourable reviews".[8]


  1. Staff writer (11 September 2005). "Film Council backs Hangman drama", BBC News Online, BBC News. Retrieved on 9 November 2008.
  2. Berlins, Marcel. (31 March 2006). "The secret executioner", The Guardian, Guardian News and Media. Retrieved on 9 November 2008.
  3. Staff writer. "The Last Hangman – Box Office Data", The Numbers, Nash Information Services, LLC.. Retrieved on 9 November 2008.
  4. Staff writer (2 September 2004). "ITV orders drama about hangman Pierrepoint", Broadcast Now, Emap Media. Retrieved on 9 November 2008.
  5. Holmwood, Leigh (26 August 2008). "TV ratings: Wogan quizshow debut draws 1.7m viewers", guardian.co.uk, Guardian News and Media. Retrieved on 9 November 2008.
  6. http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/2006/04/pierrepoint-2006/ Kent Film Office Pierrepoint Film Focus
  7. "Pierrepoint: The Last Hangman (2007)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 10 April 2018.
  8. "Pierrepoint Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
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