In the late 1930s Nella Last, a housewife aged 49, living in Barrow-in-Furness on the North West English coast,agrees to send details of her routine to the Mass observation project,a ...
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In the late 1930s Nella Last, a housewife aged 49, living in Barrow-in-Furness on the North West English coast,agrees to send details of her routine to the Mass observation project,a non-governmental scheme designed to chronicle the lives of ordinary people. When war comes Nella defies her over-protective husband to join the local Women's Voluntary Service. Initially diffident she blossoms thanks to the dominant but kindly Mrs. Waite, and enjoys her independence as a useful war worker. The film also shows her relationship with her two sons as well as the effect of the war on the community and ends by explaining that Nella kept in touch with the Mass Observation project until her death in 1968. Written by
Was cited as a crucial moment in Victoria Wood's career, as prior to this one-off, Wood was predominantly associated with her comedy work. Housewife, 49 saw her take on a serious role, showcasing her skills as a versatile actress. See more »
The second time Nella Last gets off the bus at the Town Hall, the Forum 28 Theatre is visible on the top window of the bus. That is where Forum is situated, but it was not built until between the 60's and 70's. See more »
Comidienne Victoria Wood makes a surprisingly good straight actress in this drama, which lovingly recreates the atmosphere of the 1940s. Based on the real diaries of a depressed woman unexpectedly liberated by the war, it is, however, possessed of a certain slowness and obviousness, although the individual scenes are immaculately constructed. Overall, it lacks the human depth of Mike Leigh's 'Vera Drake', another portrait of the same times, as well as that film's dramatic intent. But it's funny to see David Threlfall playing a very different, but equally useless, man of the house, following his turn as Frank Gallacher in 'Shameless'.
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