LYNDA BELLINGHAM’S other half from Second Thoughts and Robbie Coltrane’s other half from Cracker meet in the staff room of a Leeds comprehensive, discover a mutual interest in the eponymous parper, then spend an indecent number of episodes – and years – on the run from, among others, corrupt councillors, corrupt policemen, corrupt landowners, corrupt corrupters, corrupt publicans, corrupt clarinettists (always a threat) and a Russian with a red face. Tinker from LOVEJOY was in it (as a rogue, naturally), along with BERYL REID, TERENCE RIGBY and MAGGIE JONES. Affable if sometimes incomprehensible business penned by ALAN PLATER, liberally sprinkled with the man’s brilliantly sarky dialogue. (“Mother’s been up half the night with her stroganoff!” “Well, what use is money if you haven’t got your health?”) Your Mum liked the scenery, your Dad liked the jazz, you liked the frisson of Bellingham saying the word ‘pillock’. Now that’s what we call Sunday night drama.Read More
Posts Tagged With 'Beryl Reid'
Low-budget 1971 British film about a “sinister and menacing” (albeit middle-class) motorcycle gang called ‘The Living Dead’ who terrorise and wreak early 70′s havoc in the countryside and brand new concrete precincts of Borehamwood (mini skirt-wearing young Mums pushing Silver Cross prams are sent flying). The frog-loving bikers, convinced by their leader that in so doing they will have eternal life, kill themselves one by one, making for unforgettable viewing. A high point is the funeral of their leader, buried whilst still sitting, rigid, in leathers on his bike. During this odd spectacle, one of the gang members forgets that he’s meant to be a hard biker type, plays his acoustic guitar and sings a folk ditty about the temporarily deceased (“…and the world never knew his name/But the chosen few knew of his fame/Come join his company/Riding free…”) Not long afterwards, the roar of the “deceased”‘s bike engine and shifting of overlaid turf indeed signify that eternal life is his… but for how long? Nicky Henson leads, Beryl Reid plays his weird occult-loving Mum who lives in an amazing gothic-type house with splashes of early 70′s decor, George Sanders plays her scary butler, June Brown has a cameo as the grieving mum of one of the “deceased” gang members, herself the real-life sister of Vicki ‘Allo Allo’ Michelle.Read More
From the chimes of Big Ben over the London Films sig at the beginning, to the closing notes of the barrel organ theme music over the Ronald Searle credits at the end, this Launder/Gilliat masterpiece is simply the perfect British comedy film. From Alistair Sim’s dual role as Millicent/Clarence Fritton, through Joyce Grenfell’s career best as Chloe ‘copper’s nark in skirts’ Crawley, to George Cole’s Flash Harry and the staff room collective including Hermione Badderley, Renee Houston and Beryl Reid every performance is a sketch of greatness. Ealing? They did great work but they never got as good as this.Read More
ALEC GUINNESS unearths a mole in the British Secret Service very very slowly, mostly by talking abstractedly about lamplighters and ju-ju men, while MICHAEL JAYSTON steals dodgy dossiers, GEORGE SEWELL watches the door, ANTHONY BATE worries about “the minister”, BERYL REID gets pissed, SIAN PHILLIPS has a lie-in until the very last scene and Seymour off of LAST OF THE SUMMER WINE repeatedly lights a pipe. BERNARD HEPTON, TERENCE RIGBY and IAN RICHARDSON sweated. IAN BANNEN got chased through the Czechoslovakian woods by dogs. Oh, and Control (ALEXANDER KNOX) goes mental. A masterpiece.Read More
TITULAR INSTRUCTION obeyed to the letter by kids the country over as soon as they got whiff of this noneducating small tottery with green puppet Mooncat learning about council estates and Golden Syrup courtesy of a faceless bloke and a dignity-shedding BERYL REID. Hand up moggy’s arse belonged to David “ROLAND RAT” Claridge. Fetid feline would transport colleagues to mystery location (invariably a field) with hair-raising 80s electro-esque cry. Later rebranded as Mooncat And Company. The kids weren’t fooled.Read More
PETER BOWLES, playing himself, retires to the rural west coast of Ireland somewhere in the 1890s to see out his days doing a bit of low-key boundering and cheating. Unfortunately his duties as a local magistrate turn out to involve settling temper tantrums between foaming local farmers, treacherous vicars and fire-breathing buxom matriarchs, leaving precious little time for caddish chicanery. BRYAN MURRAY was our hero’s wily landlord, married to BERYL REID for extra shouty shenanigan potential.Read More