“I only came about my cough...”
[Sunday, Bloody Sunday; 1971]
As vividly and adamantly etched as it is, Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors sits well within Eastern European traditions of positioning paganism (even elevating it) alongside the precepts of the Orthodox Church.
Witness here the repeated routing of orthodox conventions with superstitious practices, where the uneasy outcome between the two more or less mirrors the situation beyond the frame. True it is that Nature - forcefully present throughout - is the more obvious elemental force with its cyclical cleansing that renders…
… or Andy Capp’s Adventures Away from Home.
In essence a long sketch about a backyard cock rooster.
It starts small and stays that way, with what amounts to just a central situation and general theme (the conflict of ageing versus an active libido), but as life assembled in stereotypes it holds some truths without pronouncing judgement too loudly.
The dilemma and setup are familiar enough not to warrant much detail but you can’t help feeling these people leave before you got to know them (although the point is they could be found propping up the bar of any pub).
As a decade the 1940s more or less accurately mark out Britain’s best film years (with a lead-in from Alexander Korda in the late 1930s), with an almost hard stop in 1949 when J Arthur Rank scaled-back production volume and artistic freedom. What followed was tinned peas compared to this era’s freshly plucked varieties.
Say ‘British film’ to many people and apart from forty years of recent dribbles, in terms of bulk you’re likely to think of stiff upper lips…
BBC Radio 3 was once known for its ‘pauses’: seconds-long gaps of dead air after a piece of music concluded, allowing an audience time to contemplate what had just gone, before an announcer stepped in (not so anymore but that’s a moan for elsewhere). This play operates in much the same way with each scene calmly paced before leaving ‘sinking-in’ time to consider the implications of what has happened and how it may influence what comes next.
In this respect…