Dir: Tony Richardson
Starring: Richard Burton and Claire Bloom
An angry young man with a grudge against life has a fling with his wife’s best friend – though they hate each other
An adaptation of the famous John Osbourne play of the same name, this drama started the depressing ‘kitchen-sink’ film cycle and makes good use of some urban railway locations. The opening shots looking out over the rooftops of Holloway have distant passing steam trains and there is a later scene with Richard Burton on the now closed main line platforms of Willesden Junction (Low Level) station with a train departing. However, the most vivid and atmospheric scenes are reserved for the final ten minutes or so of the film as Richard Burton, Claire Bloom and Mary Ure, play out their roles at a busy railway station at night. This was the original Dalston Junction, and these fantastic shots filmed within the environs of the station, include glimpses of ex-LMS Class 5MT ‘Black Five’ 4-6-0 No.45027. The scenes are very good, and the smoke, steam, and personal friction between the characters makes this a somewhat sourer version of Brief Encounter (qv).