Aha! Someone clever seems to be going around releasing some of the heavy-hitter TV docudramas and other shows from UK TV's past. Good. Well done, whoever you are.
If you like a spectacular true story of politics, justice, forensics, reportage, murder, corruption and terrorism from before the US invented it, this is for you. It has everything, and it really happened.
In 1974 one busy evening, the IRA detonated bombs in two crowded pubs in the centre of Birmingham (the real Birmingham - do I have to say 'Birmingham, England' now?) Twenty dead, two hundred injured. It was one of many similar incidents in their mainland bombing campaign. Many people and many billions of pounds were lost, but that's why terrorism is so horribly effective, and must be dealt with by diplomacy and negotiation. But I digress.
Under huge pressure, police arrested a group of six men trying to travel to Ireland, ostensibly to attend a funeral. Forensic tests revealed explosive residue on their hands. Unkind and traumatic interrogation followed, and confessions were extracted. The men were gaoled for life.
But Labour MP Chris Mullin didn't like it. The further he probed, the messier the case looked. The men were long-term Birmingham residents, not visiting IRA bombers. With the help of Granada TV investigative journalists he found that the Greiss test for explosives could be triggered by playing cards. He went to Ireland and spoke directly to IRA soldiers, learning that the bombing had been a screwup and the arrested men uninvolved. The team helped the six to obtain a retrial. They lost and went back to their prisons.
Undeterred, Mullin carried on his investigation. Could he find the real bombers and free the Birmingham Six? Would he uncover corruption and perjury at the heart of the West Midlands Police? Gee - perhaps you should watch the film.
Oh, and keep your ears open for the amazing rendition of 'The Deer's Cry' over the final credits. So sad that such beautiful music is placed in the service of such lunacy.