1hr 22mins
Dir: Dave Robinson
Starring: Lee Thompson and Mike Barson

A movie charting the formation of the music group Madness

Marketed as ‘The “Madness” Film’, Take It or Leave It is a film about the British ska/pop band Madness. The genre of the film is somewhere between documentary, drama and comedy, and although it is one of a popular theme of documentary-style music films that were made available throughout the 1970s and 1980s, today they hold little intrinsic value other than to showcase their talent to their fanbase. There is a scene where the recently formed band are running around causing mayhem on the Underground. This was filmed on the Northern and Victoria lines at Camden Town, Euston and Highbury & Islington stations with 1959 and 1967 tube stock featuring. The earlier scene with two of the band using temporary track lighting as light sabres whilst waiting for a train was filmed at Aldwych station, masquerading as ‘Euston’, and one should take note of the wooden tunnel gauging devices clearly visible stacked up against the platform wall. Some proper trains, however, also appear. Just before Lee Thompson drives his van under a low bridge a pair of Class 305 EMU’s are passing overhead whilst in another scene filmed in Mark Bedford’s bedroom, the rear of a passenger train formed of BR blue & grey Mk.1’s is just passing out of shot. As a footnote, the official music video for the band’s hit single Our House opens with a rooftop view over North London and a Class 501 EMU is passing through the landscape.

Aldwych station platform despite the Euston signage
The tunnel gauging frames propped up against the wall of what, quite frankly, is a very shabby Aldwych
May the force be with you. Portable temporary lighting in use as light sabres.
A pair of Class 305 EMU’s captured somewhere in East London
The rear of a passenger train can be seen through the bedroom window in this view
This appears to be a 1959 tube train at Camden Town on the Northern Line
Euston station on the Victoria Line with 1967 built stock in the platform
The ticket hall of Highbury & Islington on the Victoria Line