23 February 2016 | davidvmcgillivray-24-905811
Virtually unknown slice of life drama is a very poor thing
Although it will be of almost no interest to anyone, this piece of social realism based on a 1946 play by a left-wing Glasgow theatre group is still a curiosity. It's a shame that probably we'll never know why such a parochial drama by an unknown playwright was deemed worthy of filming. A lot of people live cheek by jowl in a tenement apartment. It seems likely that many of the cast (never heard of again) were repeating their stage roles. They're not awfully good and generally they speak nice drama school Scots rather than the raw Glaswegian we'd expect. There's a fair amount of theatrical make-up on show. The house-mates include an Indian (who appears to be played by a Jew with an accent that wanders too regularly into Welsh) and inevitably a struggling artist desperate to escape the Gorbals squalor. There's much talk of poverty but the drama only comes to life when an irate father finds his daughter sitting on the artist's lap. The mediocre writing is a very long way from Steinbeck or Miller. Apart from establishing shots, the entire film was shot at London's Merton Park Studios. This robs the film of any hope of realism.