Morris: A Life With Bells On. Copyright: Twist Films Morris Ltd.

Morris: A Life With Bells On

Morris: A Life With Bells On

Mockumentary film following the life of Derecq Twist and his love of Morris Dancing. Stars Charles Thomas Oldham, Greg Wise and Sir Derek Jacobi

Charles Thomas Oldham, Derek Jacobi, Greg Wise, Ian Hart, Naomie Harris, Dominique Pinon, Sophie Thompson, Richard Lumsden and others
Charles Thomas Oldham
Lucy Akhurst
Charles Thomas Oldham and Lucy Akhurst

Morris dancing may not be the most fashionable way to throw shapes, but its century's-old traditions make it one of the most iconic folk traditions in the UK.

Morris: A Life With Bells On is a heartwarming feature length comedy film shot in documentary format. It follows the fortunes of one of the leading Morris teams in the country, Millsham Morris, and in particular its avant garde and enigmatic leader, Derecq Twist.

On the one hand Derecq is a traditionalist - when the film joins him he's preparing to perform the ultimate Morris Dance, the mystical and legendary Threepole Hammer Damson - and yet on the other, he is pioneering an innovative and daring freeform brand of dancing... Extreme Morris.

Innovation and invention doesn't sit well with the Morris establishment, and soon Derecq is thrown out of the Morris Circle - governing body of Morris dancing.

Now a beaten man, Derecq contemplates giving up Morris for good, until the producer of the documentary persuades him to go to LA and dance with the flamboyant Morris men of Orange County.

Derecq finds artistic freedom in Los Angeles, falls in love for the first time and then follows his heart to Iowa to start a new live with his beloved, Sonja.

However, life is rarely as simple as it is in the movies. Is Sonja's love enough to keep Derecq in America? Can he really face a life without Morris dancing? Or will the lack of real cider in the States finally push him over the edge?

Production Details

UK certificate
100 minutes
Release date
Sunday 27th September 2009
Production company
Most music composed by Richard Lumsden.
Laugh track

Broadcast details

Last repeat
Friday 2nd November 2012 at 7:00pm on Blighty

Website links


Supporters and subscribers get more

Additional content and tools are available across the site for Supporters and BCG Pro subscribers. On this page you can:

  • View location details

Donate (for fans) BCG Pro

Already a donor or Pro user?