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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This hidden gem should be properly restored
Believe me, holidays were really like this!

This is a wonderful gem of a film that the BBC excel at - wonderful script by Michael Palin; immaculate attention to historical detail; and wholly believable acting of whom Joan Sanderson's landlady undoubtedly steals the show. Social historians wanting to know how most familes spent one week in August in that dank,...
Published on 7 Aug 2010 by Peter Ward

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Home grown TV movie
Not the worst TV type of movie I've ever seen. Observant, if not slightly predictable at times.
To be fair the review did warn me - so not disappointed. Just not overly impressive.
Published 6 months ago by Partigirl


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This hidden gem should be properly restored, 7 Aug 2010
By 
Peter Ward (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
Believe me, holidays were really like this!

This is a wonderful gem of a film that the BBC excel at - wonderful script by Michael Palin; immaculate attention to historical detail; and wholly believable acting of whom Joan Sanderson's landlady undoubtedly steals the show. Social historians wanting to know how most familes spent one week in August in that dank, grey period between the end of World War II and the onset of cheap flights to Majorca in the 1970s need look no further.

The only gripe is, sadly, some of the colour has softened with age. It really should be properly restored. But don't let that put you off - just watch and enjoy.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just marvellous!, 22 Oct 2009
By 
Garry P. Humphreys "garryph" (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
High time this wonderful play was available on DVD, twenty-three years after it was first shown on British television. The atmosphere of family holidays in the 1950s and 60s is marvellously evoked (it was filmed on location at Southwold) and the cast is brilliant, particularly Joan Sanderson as the dragon-like but kindly seaside landlady and John Nettleton as the hero's father. Anyone over 50 will have been here many times! Often poignant, often very funny, and always enjoyable, and from a time when holidays were very different from the present need to fly abroad or indulge in a great deal of extravagance, this is hugely recommendable.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Took me back ... !, 29 May 2011
By 
P. Smith (Suffolk, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
This play positively oozes nostalgia! Although I didn't live near the East Coast in my childhood (I now actually live in Ipswich!!) I well remember being taken to the seaside with my parents in very similar circumstances to those suffered by the young man in the DVD. The film was made in 1986 (but set in the late 50s) and Southwold has changed very little, although the beach huts have now had a lick of paint and the pier has been beautifully restored. It's still rather upmarket as English seaside resorts go and, of course, the sandy beach and the beach huts are still there.

The play harks back to another age - was it an age of innocence? - where a quick snog behind a beach hut was something to boast about and 17-year-olds were much more under the thumb of their parents than they are nowadays. The young man in the play, a rather lonely, only child, is taken off for a week's holiday to Southwold by his rather elderly (in outlook as much as in age) parents where they stay in a boarding-house run by an overbearing termagant of a landlady (although she later shows that she really has a heart of gold buried somewhere under that formidable bosom) played by the magnificent Joan Sanderson. The boredom of such a holiday to a 17-year-old is clear and he pairs up with another young man (who considers himself very much to be a man of the world) who is staying in the same establishment. The two manage to escape their parents' eagle eyes and get themselves involved, not only with the twin daughters of an evangelist/vicar, but with two very pretty young girls, one English, one Dutch, who are staying in Southwold with the parents of the English one. The most exciting places available to teenagers in the late 50s were coffee bars and the local "hop" and it seems to have been amazingly difficult to get away from the parents, even to go to those! However, our hero and his friend do so, with interesting consequences.

The play is a gentle observation of a way of life which is now long gone and has many very funny moments - the sight of the family bumbling around an expanse of almost deserted beach for ages, looking for a place to put their deckchairs down, is priceless!

This is a DVD to be watched over and over again, when life seems fraught and you're in need of cheering up. I loved it!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ironic nostalgia from a little-known masterpiece, 7 Mar 2012
By 
Geoffrey Walker (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
This beautifully written and acted play by Michael Palin is one of the best modern TV dramas I have seen. A nostalgic coming-of-age piece, it captures the frustrations, awkwardness and ambitions of adolescence in a mid-century context that enshrines the sense (fallacious, probably) that life was simpler and better then.

Doubtless those of us who can locate the world of the play somewhere in the depths of our childhood memories will find that it strums particular strings and speaks eloquently of an age, both historical and personal, gone by and irrecoverable. Houseman's 'blue remembered hills' spring (apparently) to mind.

But the play transcends its provincial boundaries and, while remaining charmingly understated, proffers characters we can all recognise and root for or against. Palin's insight is sharp (and sometimes a touch cruel in its accuracy) and he creates that most remarkable of things, a comedy which does not make you laugh out loud. It's funny because just being human is funny and we know it (and ourselves) when we see it.

As well as a gallery of excellent performances (and look out for Joan Sanderson as the not-quite-classic seaside landlady) the play enjoys a wonderfully apt score by George Fenton (Blue Planet and around a hundred other film and TV scores - I'm surprised they could afford him) which adds just the right touch of sepia.

But you'll really have to see this to realise how good it is. It's worth investing in the DVD because you *will* want to watch it again and again.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars On Holiday with your parents, 8 Jan 2011
This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
DVD "EAST OF IPSWICH" THIS DVD BRINGS BACK MEMORIES OF WHEN I WAS A TEENAGER AND WAS FORCED TO ACCOMPANY MY PARENTS ON A HOLIDAY AT THE SEASIDE. IT WAS A GREAT DVD
AND MANY OF THE COMMENTS MADE BY THE PARENTS TO THEIR SON - HIT HOME AS I HAD VERY
SIMILAR EXPERIENCES. "QUIT MOANING AND ENJOY YOURSELF" "YOU COULD MAKE AN EFFORT TO MEET SOME OTHERS YOUR AGE" THE SON IN THE STORY AND I SHARED MANY SIMILAR THOUGHTS. ALL IN ALL IT WAS WELL ACTED AND VERY FUNNY.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars East of Ipswich, 6 May 2010
By 
D. J. Lay "deelay" (U.K.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
Anyone who spent their childhood holidays on the East Coast will love this.
Southwold has hardly changed since it was filmed, except for the increased number of visitors who have found this magical spot.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A little gem, 7 Jan 2010
This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
I can only echo what the previous reviewer said about this over looked gem of a TV Movie. I cannot believe more than 20 years have passed since I previously saw this wonderful production. Michael Palin's script is bright, sweet, witty and never lapses into schmaltz. The evocation of a British seaside holiday from times gone past is perfectly captured. All that and Oona Kirsch looking beautiful - why did this lady never go on to be a massive film and TV star I shall never know. Highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars East of Ipswich DVD, 11 Jun 2010
By 
Professor Alan J. Baker (Suffolk, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
A friend introduced me to this excellent BBC DVD by Michael Palin. It brought back memories of my own family holidays as an adolescent boy. I live on the Suffolk coast and it all rang all too true! The characters are extremely well cast and the dialogue positively 'cringe-worthy' at times. I have already recommended it to several friends whom I know will also appreciate it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars East Of Ipswich [DVD] [1986], 17 Jun 2010
By 
James Mcewan (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
I recorded this when it was first broadcast and as technology moved on, I junked my VHS recorder and tapes.
So I was delighted when I saw that Amazon were stocking this. John Nettleton and Joan Sanderson add their own unique polish to this production, which is a resume of 50s/60s seaside holidays in the UK as experienced by a post pubescent boy/young man eager to escape the confines of his middle class parents and taste the delights everyone but him seems to be enjoying.

First class comedy......and price!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb period piece!, 25 Jan 2013
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This review is from: East of Ipswich [DVD] (DVD)
I first saw this on TV many years ago and have always wanted to see it again. So delighted that its available on DVD. This is a masterful portrait of English family holidays in the 1960s. Very amusing to see how we used to behave!
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East of Ipswich [DVD]
East of Ipswich [DVD] by Tristram Powell (DVD - 2009)
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