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OPTIONAL SUBTITLES. 1 disc.  Drama. Colour. Year: 1968. Running time approx 114 mins.

Cast: Suzy Kendall, Dennis Waterman, Adrienne Posta, Liz Fraser, Maureen Lipman, Linda Cole, Doreen Herrington, Jessie Robins, Barbara Archer, Ruby Head, Susan George, Sandra Williams, Michael Robbins, Billy Murray, Michael Gothard, Aubrey Morris, Michael Standing, Alfie Bass, Hylda Baker, Shaun Curry, Olwen Griffiths, Queenie Watts, Lockwood West, Larry Martyn, Yvonne Manners, Derek Ware, Michael Barrington, Harry Hutchinson and Mike Reid.

Directed by Peter Collinson. 

Based on Nell Dunn’s gritty tale of life in swinging sixties London, Up the Junction is an unforgettable classic of British cinema. Starring Suzy Kendall as Polly and Dennis Waterman as her boyfriend Peter, it is the tale of a young, well-heeled, party girl who, bored with her affluent Chelsea lifestyle, moves to the industrialised and considerably less well-to-do area of Battersea in search of realism.

Shot in the Battersea area of London with a soundtrack by Manfred Mann, the film followed Ken Loach’s BBC TV adaptation of 1965, but stayed closer to the original book, generating less controversy than the Loach version. The period footage of London as the swinging centre of the sixties revolution is brilliantly portrayed, with innovative camera work which places the viewer on the street, in the London markets and on the factory floor. Here, girls in headscarves and blue overalls banter raucously, gossiping and smoking over the production-line. They’re almost poisoned by a pack of cigarettes found at the bottom of a tea-urn. At break-time, apprentices play football in the yard beside the bike-sheds as the girls watch and snigger. Polly adopts the fashion of the era, buying a bright miniskirt and cutting her long hair into a bob. Her cheap flat furnished with second-hand furniture near the railway line has a view of tower- blocks and background noise of Police sirens and dogs barking. Her friends, sisters Rube and Sylvie McCarthy, take her to a smoky saloon bar where they banter and sing, but Rube is ‘up the spout’ and must undergo a back-street abortion administered by Hylda Baker as a gin-swigging shop keeper who performs abortions as a ‘sideline’ above her hardware store. So the double meaning of the film’s title is made clear, through the mean streets around the railway junction and the often deadly practices before termination was available on the NHS. Rube survives the abortion but her engagement to boyfriend Terry is tragically cut short. Polly and Peter spend a weekend away in Brighton, but their romance is also doomed. This is a memorable portrayal of the realities of working class London life in the sixties.

£15 with free UK Postage.

Additional information

Weight .505 kg
Dimensions 29.7 × 21.0 × 3.0 cm