I'm currently formulating a mental list of all the films I want to watch over my Tier 3 Christmas break; all the usual suspects will be screened at some point during my three week lay off starting next Friday: Comfort and Joy, The Odd Couple, Gumshoe, Croupier, A Hard Day's Night, Local Hero, to name but a few.
Joining them this year will be Metro-Land, the short film John Betjeman made for the BBC in 1973; the then poet laureate documented a part of suburban north London - following the path of the old Metropolitan line - never put under the microscope in such a way before.
The ever urbane Betjeman had an eye for the mundane but could turn it on its head with nothing more than a deft turn of phrase. So I wouldn't be surprised after Metro-Land if I then dig out his travelogues - available thru the BFI portal - many made for the Shell company in the 1950s and 1960s; time capsules all.
I'll sign off with one of his finest poems. In the mid 70s the Charisma label (Genesis, Bonzos, Monty Python et al) thought it would be cool if Sir John would read some verse - backed by the subtle musical arrangement of Jim Parker. He ended up doing a couple of albums for them. Banana Blush is my personal favourite.
John Betjeman - Indoor Games Near Newbury (1974)