Tired of his miserable job and wife, a businessman starts dreaming on the train each night, about an old, idyllic town called Willoughby. Soon he has to know whether the town is real and fancies the thought of seeking refuge there.
Ad agency executive Garth Williams has had a particularly rough day - his young protégé has left to work at another agency and took a $3 million account him. He falls asleep on the train home and wakes up in another place and another time. It's July 1888 and he's in the village of Willoughby, a peaceful town where life is easy. He comes to back in his own time but as the pressures of works and his home life continue to mount, he decides Willoughby is exactly where he would like to spend the rest of days. Written by
The train stations called out by the conductor on the 1960 train are real. At the time of the filming, stations such as "Stamford" and "Westport & Saugatuck" were stations on the New Haven Railroad. They continue to exist as of June 2013 as stations on the Metro North Railroad. However, present day maps, station signs and conductors, do not mention Saugatuck in the station name. See more »
Just before Gart Williams enters the restroom, the office assistant tells him his boss wants to talk to him. He uses the phone and hangs the receiver up backwards (cord across the dial). When he returns to the desk, after breaking the mirror, the receiver is hung up correctly. See more »
And just where would you be if it weren't for my appetite?
I know where I'd like to be.
A place called Willoughby, a little town I manufactured in a dream.
Tell me about your dream, Gart.
It was an odd dream. Very odd dream. Willoughby. It was summer, very warm. Kids were barefooted. One of them had a fishing pole. It all looked like a Currier and Ives painting. Bandstand, bicycles, wagons. I've never seen such serenity. It was the way people must have lived a hundred years ago. ...
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A few years ago, when we found that the "SyFy" channel had a Twilight Zone marathon, me & the missus sat down to watch. I'd seen many of these as a kid; she'd seen almost none.
This is one of her favorites: a dream of Willoughby is the ideal antidote to Mr. Misrell's (Mr. Miserable's?) relentless "push, push, push!" James Daly is outstanding as the exhausted & disillusioned ad manager, on the cusp of what they probably still call "a breakdown." Soon, there is nothing to separate the commuter train he rides each evening from the one his dreams.
Dozens of Twilight Zone episodes involved seeking solace in small towns (think: Of Late I Dream of Cliffordville, with Julie Newmar): this one of the best.
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