In Cross Now, during a blazing row with his boss, strangely enough architect Michael Ponsford still gets his promotion. However, he does not get much time to enjoy it, because, in the ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Keith Barron ...
Michael Ponsford
Anthony May ...
Barry Galloway
...
Angela Ponsford
...
Barbara Henderson
Robin Halstead ...
Robin Sackett
Gladys Spencer ...
Lady Ridgwell
...
Bromley
John Gabriel ...
Hodgkinson
Richard Moore ...
Slater
Anthony Donovan ...
Wilson
Alan Wyle ...
Surgeon
Brian Vaughan ...
Detective Inspector Miller
...
Detective Constable Bryan
Jamie Anderson ...
David Ponsford
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Storyline

In Cross Now, during a blazing row with his boss, strangely enough architect Michael Ponsford still gets his promotion. However, he does not get much time to enjoy it, because, in the middle of the argument, his boss suffers a heart attack. And he is not the only one to die. Ponsford is haunted by death: the woman with whom he had been flirting for too long, his wife's father, one of his competitors, they all succumb. Finally, Ponsford's young son also dies. Written by Montevideo, Holland

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Drama

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30 October 1977 (Netherlands)  »

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1.37 : 1
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Trivia

This TV special can be found on disc 2 of Wim T. Schippers' Televisiepraktijken DVD box 9: Single Plays & Vroeg Werk. See more »

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Somethings just weren't meant to be explained
11 November 2010 | by (Rijswijk, ZH, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

There is something about British thespians. They have a way of making any dialogue sound plausible and interesting. Possibly this is why W.T. Schippers decided to set his television play 'Cross Now' in the UK and have a completely British cast (with the exception of three Dutch tourists) and English director-working-in-Holland Andrew Wilson. Another reason may have been to broaden the appeal of Schippers writing with the possibility of selling the programme to English speaking countries. One thing that is for certain however is that the league for the benefits of Dutch actors did not approve of this production preferring English actors instead of Dutch.

As with most of Schippers work, the writer is more interested in presenting interesting dialogue for somewhat unlikable characters than with plot. If there is a plot, it would have to do with the main character, architect Michael Ponsford (Keith Barron) being followed around by death. It's not that he's planning to kill anyone, people just seem to drop like flies wherever he goes. In some cases he could be blamed to a small degree (his boss has a heart attack during an argument with Ponsford), but others he just happens to be nearby when somebody kicks the bucket. Also his wife's father dies off screen.

Angela, the wife in question is played by Gabrielle Drake and fans of this Hammer/UFO favourite should do well to seek out Cross Now if only for her topless scene. You see she is having an affair with one of her models (would you believe she prefers to be behind the photo camera instead of in front of it?) This man is also intend on sabotaging Ponsford's important meeting the next day and almost succeeds if it were not for a bomb scare.

As noted before, Schippers lines, even when translated by Adrian Brine seem to come natural to the talented cast, who look especially splendid in their late seventies haircuts and suits with ties that cover almost the entire chest. The direction and photography are fine as well, making it look like an actual 'Masterpiece theater' television production. Unfortunately the story just isn't very gripping. All the tragedies surrounding the main characters are left to chance, and Ponsford never seems to be very affected by the proceedings anyway, he just gets drunk and wanders about town.

The final tragedy, involving Michael and Angela's young son David, does evoke some emotions from the simple fact that the victim is so very young. This is despite the fact that David hadn't appeared in any scenes beforehand. As the credits start to roll we see distraught parents waiting in the hospital, where a surgeon informs them that David is still alive, but barely. A tiny sparkle of hope tacked on to the very end. On reflection, Cross Now (the title is spoken near the end by a cab driver by the way) seems like a six part drama (with at least five cliffhangers) crammed into one.

6 out of 10


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