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Play for Today at 50

Play for Today: Destiny

Complex, chilling film about the rise of fascism in 1970s West Midlands.

Image from Play for Today: Destiny

Image: BBC - black and white still from a colour programme

BBC 1978
Dir Mike Newell
With Colin Jeavons, Iain Cuthbertson, Nigel Hawthorne, Saeed Jaffrey
105min

Long hard to see, David Edgar's ambitious, incisive study of far right politics feels joltingly contemporary. Through a late-1970s West Midlands by-election and the reactionary awakening of an embittered shopkeeper, Edgar's chilling play explores the rise of a new breed of fascism, cynically playing on Britain's grieving for lost Empire, industrial decline, lower-middle-class status anxiety and white working-class disaffection.

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