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Armchair Thriller - Rachel In Danger [1978] [DVD]

4.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

2 new from £20.00 6 used from £3.52

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Product details

  • Actors: Stephen Greif, Della Low
  • Directors: Waris Hussein
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 21 Jan. 2008
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00112GCBW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 89,092 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

With memorable and unsettling opening credits, 'Armchair Thriller' became a massive hit for Thames Television in the late 1970s and early 1980s. With its trademark ghoulish cliff hangers and iconic theme tune (by Roxy Music's Andy Mackay), this haunting anthology series was an immediate success, its eerie, disturbing tales regularly attracting over 15 million viewers. For many, this series remains a high-watermark of dramatic television and its many frightening and spooky moments are remembered by viewers nearly thirty years after its original transmission. In this 1978 episode Peter Warmington (Neville Jason), recently returned from South America, bumps into an old friend called Juan (Stephen Greif). Unfortunately, Juan is not the friend he seems: he murders Peter, stealing his identity as a means to effect a political assassination. Things are going well and then, unexpectedly, Warmington's estranged, ten-year-old daughter (Delia Low) arrives...

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Armchair Thriller ran for two series from 1978 to 1980, with each of its 11 stories consisting of between 4 to 6 episodes. I remember being unsettled by it as a child so its great to finally be able to watch it again on DVD.
This is the first story of Season 1 and involves a young girl (Rachel) travelling to London to meet her father who she has not seen for many years. Meanwhile her father is being bumped off and his identity stolen by the murderer. While the story is rooted in a late-70s world of far-left terrorists obsessed with 'deviationists' and bumping people off on the sly in parks, this still manages to chill.
Hopefully Network will release the whole series, especially "Quiet as a Nun".
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There were certain TV shows that many people of my particular age group still have vague memories of even to this day, more especially for their theme tunes and opening titles, and Armchair Thriller is certainly one of them. So eerie and chilling was the effect of Andy Mackays' music at the start of every story that it made me as a 5 year-old scared to go to bed in the evening alone, and today I think it's a miracle that the show was scheduled for as early as 8 to 8.30pm, given its' scary overtones. But having watched this story for the first time ever 36 years later on YouTube the shock factor has all but gone, although it didn't ruin my enjoyment of its four episodes.

Rachel In Danger gets the series off to a perfect start as it more or less lays the foundations for the remainder of the stories - it chills and oozes tension in equal measure, and in many ways the plot is reminiscent of many an Agatha Christie novel or Alfred Hitchcock movie. Good performances from a strong cast help carry it along really quite nicely, with Stephen Greif giving a deliciously evil performance as the smooth-talking south american assassin Juan, who remains cool and calm throughout after having murdered his old friend Peter Walmington (Neville Jason), as well as having to assume the role of father figure to Peters' young daughter Rachel whilst hatching a plot with a group of terrorists to commit a political assassination. But little does the killer realise that the child is no fool and is one step ahead of their plans...

An interesting piece of casting is that of Gwynneth Powell as the WPC who becomes Rachels' saviour during the story and whom she goes to for help as events start to unfold - she's better known still to this day as Mrs.McCluskey, the long-serving headmistress of Grange Hill!
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This was shown on ITV via Thames in early 1978. It is interesting to see, as it is clearly a product of the times (nice to see Euston Station in 1977/78), but it is a wonderfully chilling story, as indeed all the AArmchair Thrillers were. The one with the Nun will casue late 30 somethings to still shudder! This story involves terrorists, but, as the title of the programmes suggest, the idea is to thrill and it does this in spades! One could wax lyrical about how they don't make them like this anymore (which, ideed they don't), but it is a great tale and something to see is possible in winter months, as it is creepier to see it when it is dark outside. Either that or stay up late in Summer!
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