Bob Holt's last journey as a Railway engine driver before his retirement, a journey disturbed by his distress at leaving the Railway, and his suspicions of the relationship between his wife...
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Bob Holt's last journey as a Railway engine driver before his retirement, a journey disturbed by his distress at leaving the Railway, and his suspicions of the relationship between his wife and his fireman. Aboard the train are a pair of pickpockets, a honeymoon couple, a drunk, a temperance pamphleteer and a host of familiar types, all more-or-less bizarre in characteristically English ways. Bob takes an unexpected course of action, and the characters start interacting in varied and unexpected ways. When, at last, the train stops, all has been resolved, but not as might have been expected at the beginning of the journey.Written by
Stewart Naunton <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This film is one of over 200 titles in the list of independent feature films made available for television presentation by Advance Television Pictures announced in Motion Picture Herald 4 April 1942. At this time, television broadcasting was in its infancy, almost totally curtailed by the advent of World War II, and would not continue to develop until 1945-1946. Because of poor documentation (feature films were often not identified by title in conventional sources) no record has yet been found of its initial television broadcast. It's earliest documented telecast was Saturday 2 July 1949 on WCBS (Channel 2), New York City, as one of about three dozen British titles picked up for television distribution in the USA by the CBS Television Network. It first aired in Cincinnati Thursday 1 September 1949 on WCPO (Channel 7). See more »
Interesting locations for railway enthusiasts but a laughable plot, with the driver saying the "communication cord" wouldn't work because he had turned off the steam.
He would have had to tamper with the automatic vacuum brake on each carriage to stop the system working. The system was designed to stop such tampering.
It was a fail safe braking system where anyone pulling the cord would admit air into the vacuum pipe, which would apply the brakes throughout the train.
Bizarrely no passenger tried pulling the "cord". See more »
Video from a restored and remastered version by the BBC from National Film and Television Archive [uk] materials. See more »
Although only an hour long, The Last Journey is a very gripping vintage British thriller.
A train driver, just about to undertake his last job before retiring discovers his fireman is having an affair with his wife, so he takes a gun and threatens him with it and he forces him to keep putting coal into the fire to make the loco go faster. As a result, the train misses all its stops and arrives at its destination early. One of the passengers manages to get the driver to slow down. There is a rather motley collection of passengers on board including a newly married couple on honeymoon, a pair of crooks, a woman who tells everyone not to drink alcohol, a couple with some very lively children, a Frenchman and a lone boy.
Despite its low budget and age, I enjoyed watching this movie. It is available in the UK on VHS as a double feature with The Ghost Camera.
A must for all vintage movie fans and also rail enthusiasts. Excellent.
Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
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