Screen One: Season 1, Episode 5

She's Been Away (1 Dec. 1991)

TV Episode  |   |  Comedy, Crime, Drama
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 137 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 1 critic

Locked away in an asylum as a young girl because she was an embarrassment to her family, then forgotten, an old woman returns to what's left of her kin and to her memories.


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lillian Huckle
Harriet Ambrose
Hugh Ambrose
Jackson Kyle ...
Dominic Ambrose
Rosalie Crutchley ...
Young Lillian
Cryss Jean Healey ...
Young Margaret
Leslie Goodall ...
Old Edward (as Lesley Goodall)
Edgar Goodall ...
Young Thomas
Barnaby Holm ...
Young Edward
Donald Douglas ...
Lillian's Father
Hugh Lloyd ...
Brid Brennan ...
Lillian's Nurse


A woman who has been institutionalized for 60 years for the "crime" of not conforming to the 1920s image of what a proper young woman should be (in other words, she did what she wanted and didn't care what anyone else thought about it) is finally released to the custody of her family, consisting of her grand-nephew and his family. At first she keeps a self-imposed distance from the relatives, but she soon finds herself coming around to her nephew's wife, a free spirit who is under the thumb of her cold and controlling husband. Written by

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Release Date:

1 December 1991 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


Last film role of Peggy Ashcroft. See more »


Singing the Blues
Written by Melvin Endsley
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User Reviews

Superb film
27 January 2003 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Like many "civilised" nations, we used to institutionalise people for all manner of reasons, including left-handedness and impetuous behaviour. Lillian, played brilliantly by Peggy Ashcroft, falls into the latter category. This film is the story of her return to civilisation.

Geraldine James is excellent as the (possibly equally impetuous) wife of the nephew (a priggish James Fox) who takes Lillian on. A child actor unknown to me, Jackson Kyle, makes an unforgettable cameo as the son, possibly the most pompous little git ever. A young Rebecca Pidgeon plays Young Lillian in the flashbacks.

It has Poliakoff written all over it - out of character impetuous behaviour is one of his trademarks. I am a fan of Poliakoff's and this is one of his best pieces for TV. Indeed, this is TV film drama at its very, very best. Highly recommended.

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