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No Trees in the Street (1959)

Surrounded by new 1950s East End high-rise flats, a London detective thinks back to how different things were in the late 1930s. Then it was an area of overcrowded tenements teeming with ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Hetty Martin
...
Ronald Howard ...
Detective Sergeant Frank Collins
...
Kipper
Joan Miller ...
Jess Martin
Melvyn Hayes ...
Tommy Martin
Liam Redmond ...
Bill
Carole Lesley ...
Lova
Lana Morris ...
Marje
Lily Kann ...
Mrs. Sarah Jacobson
Marianne Stone ...
Mrs. Jokel
Edwin Richfield ...
Jackie
Campbell Singer ...
Inspector
Lloyd Lamble ...
Police Superintendent
...
Kenny
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Storyline

Surrounded by new 1950s East End high-rise flats, a London detective thinks back to how different things were in the late 1930s. Then it was an area of overcrowded tenements teeming with impoverished unemployed people with little or no hope. He relates the story of attractive young Hetty who desperately tried to stop her younger brother descending into crime while her mother was endlessly urging her to take up with Wilkie, a smooth local racketeer, in the belief this would get the family out of poverty. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

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January 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Inga träd på gatan  »

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Hetty: [to Wilkie, the local mob boss, after her brother is killed] You killed him, months ago you killed him! You said you wanted to help him. You never helped anyone the whole of your rotten life! You're greedy and wicked, you're a devil, you're a devil to boys like Tommy! Your smart suits, your sweet talk and your easy money!
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Referenced in Empire of the Censors (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The whole world's gone mad. Stark raving mad.
2 August 2015 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

No Trees in the Street is directed by J. Lee Thompson and adapted from his own play by Ted Willis. It stars Sylvia Syms, Herbert Lom, Ronald Howard, Melvyn Hayes and Stanley Holloway. Music is by Laurie Johnson and cinematography by Gilbert Taylor.

Capturing a young tearaway, a London copper tells the youngster a story from a couple of decades earlier. It's about a family living in the slums of the East End, of a pretty daughter getting involved with the local racketeer, of the young impressionable son turning to crime, it's of their fates, trials and tribulations.

Part kitchen sink plotter, part noir melodrama, No Trees in the Street is thin on story but big on heart. Ted Willis is guilty of not fully pushing the drama through in his adaptation, getting caught between making a potent anti-crime piece and that of a mawkish "we had it tough back then" nostalgia trip.

That said, the tale does hold tight throughout, and all the characters are nicely drawn and placed within a depressingly real backdrop. The means, motives and decisions involving some of them are cutting, keeping the narrative edgy, while the cast performances are bang on the money for such a screenplay. Bonus comes with Taylor's (Ice Cold in Alex/Repulsion) photography, which come the second half of film dresses it all up in noir nirvana. 6/10


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