This film had a big impact on me. Saw first saw it on BBC2 in the 70's as part of a Anderson Retro. Originally based on Delaney's book Red, White & Zero it was a three director/stories feature film. Although the other two parts were never finished. That's why the film doesn't have titles.
The reason why I loved this film was because I grew up in a slum clearance area of Liverpool. The film's landscape was exactly the same. Everything demolished - except for the pubs. I'd never seen anything like it on TV before.
I recently got another chance to see it and loved it. The story follows a girl who is fed up with working in London. The shot opens with her at a desk while the legs of a hanged fellow worker dangle from the celling. She leaves London - tired and fed up - and goes home to Manchester (although parts of the film were filmed in Birmigham). She stands at a desolate bus stop in the middle of demolished terraces. When along comes the white bus - it's a tour guided ride which shows the best of the city. What makes it even more special is that the bus is on it's maiden voyage. The Lord Mayor (Arthur Lowe) and other dignitaries ride the bus on a tour of factories, libraries and even a civil defence demo. At the end of the tour the girl winds up in a small cafe watching, inside what look like married couple. Thier love and passion for the small things in life mesmerises and charms the girl - reminding her what life's all about.
For Delaney it's like Charlie Bubbles - dealing with leaving your home town and looking at the effect it has on you. For Anderson it's yet another example of his cinematic poetry - like If... and Sporting Life. This film is a very special film by very special people. Oh thank you for making it.
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