The Full Monty

The once-successful steel mills of Sheffield, South Yorkshire, have shut down and most of the staff have been laid off. Former steelworkers Gary “Gaz” Schofield and Dave Horsefall have resorted to stealing scrap metal from the abandoned mills to sell. They take Gaz’s son Nathan with them to help their thieving efforts. They are surprised by a security guard who locks them inside the steel mill.

Gaz is facing trouble from his ex-wife Mandy and her boyfriend Barry over child support payments that he has been unable to pay since losing his job. Nathan lives with Mandy and Barry but Gaz has joint custody of him with Mandy. Nathan wishes he and his father Gaz could do more “normal stuff” in their time together. Mandy seeks a court ruling giving her sole custody of Nathan, whom Gaz loves dearly. Gaz is desperate for money and for Nathan’s love.

One day, Gaz spots a crowd of women lined up outside a local club to see a Chippendales’ striptease act. He gets the idea to form his own striptease group using local men in hopes of making enough money to pay off his child support obligations. The first to join the group is Lomper, a security guard at the steel mill where Dave and Gaz once worked, whom they interrupt while he is attempting suicide. Next, they recruit Gerald Cooper, their former foreman, who is hiding from his wife the fact that he is unemployed. Gaz and Dave see Gerald and his wife, Linda, at a dance class, and recruit him to teach them some actual dance moves.

The four men hold an open audition to recruit more members and settle on Horse, an older man who is nevertheless a good dancer, and Guy, who can’t dance but proves to be well-endowed. The six men begin to practise their act. Gaz then learns that he has to pay £100 in order to secure the club for the night. He cannot afford this, but Nathan gets the money out of his savings. When they are greeted by two local women while they put up posters for the show, Gaz boasts that they are better than the real Chippendales because they go “the full monty”. Dave drops out due to body image issues and gets a job as a security guard at Asda. The others hold a public rehearsal at the mill in front of some female relatives of Horse, but are caught mid-show by a passing policeman, and Gaz, Gerald and Horse are arrested for indecent exposure. This costs Gaz the right to see Nathan. Lomper and Guy manage to escape to Lomper’s house, where they look lovingly at each other, starting a relationship.

Gerald is thrown out by Linda after bailiffs arrive at their house and seize their belongings to pay Gerald’s debts, resulting in him having to stay with Gaz. Later Gaz goes to Asda and asks Dave if he could borrow a jacket for Lomper’s mother’s funeral. Dave agrees and also decides to quit his job and they go to the funeral together.

Soon, the group find the act and their arrest has made them famous. They agree to forgo the plan, until Gaz learns that the show is sold out. He convinces the others to do it for one night only. Gerald is unsure as he has now got the job that Gaz and Dave earlier tried to sabotage his interview for, but agrees to do it just once. Initially Dave still refuses, but regains his confidence after encouragement from his wife, Jean, and joins the rest of the group minutes before they go on stage. Nathan also arrives with Dave, having secretly come along, and tells Gaz that Mandy is there but she would not let Barry go with her.

Gaz refuses to do the act because there are men in the audience (including the police officers who watched the footage of the security camera’s recording of them earlier), when the posters were supposed to say it was for women only. The other five are starting the act when Nathan orders his father to go out on stage. Gaz, proud of his son, joins the others and performs in front of the audience and Mandy, who seems to see him in a new light. The film finishes with the group performing on stage in front of a packed house, stripping to Tom Jones’ version of “You Can Leave Your Hat On” (their hats being the final item removed) with astounding success.