An adaption of John Braine's novel.




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Series cast summary:
 Joe Lampton (2 episodes, 2012)
 Charles (2 episodes, 2012)
 Mrs. Thompson (2 episodes, 2012)
 Mr. Hoylake (2 episodes, 2012)
 Mr. Thompson (2 episodes, 2012)
 Alice Aisgill (2 episodes, 2012)
Lauren Crace ...
 Joan (2 episodes, 2012)
 Beryl (2 episodes, 2012)
 Eva Storr (2 episodes, 2012)
Paul Tomblin ...
 Ray (2 episodes, 2012)
 Susan Brown (2 episodes, 2012)
Paul Hilton ...
 Bob Storr (2 episodes, 2012)
 Jack Wales (2 episodes, 2012)
 Mr. Brown (2 episodes, 2012)


An adaption of John Braine's novel.

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Release Date:

26 September 2012 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Ambição  »

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Did You Know?


Transmission was scheduled for 7 and 14 April 2011, but the programme was withdrawn with a few days' notice, despite extensive publicity of trailers and articles in listings magazines, because of a copyright claim by a third party that they had signed an exclusive option on the novel. The copyright issue was then resolved in May 2012 and the films scheduled for transmission on BBC4 in late September 2012. See more »


Remake of Room at the Top (1959) See more »

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User Reviews

Gold-standard TV drama
7 October 2012 | by (Berkeley, CA, USA) – See all my reviews

This story of a working-class young man in the late 1940s trying to make a life for himself is extremely involving, not least because it's so erotic (mostly because the sex seems so real, which is to say all-consuming and ambivalent at the same time, as is so often the case). If you've ever had any sort of illicit affair, you know the knots you inevitably get tied in, no matter how honestly you try to deal with the situation; this movie touches very keenly on that heartbreak, with great honestly.

Brave work by Maxine Peake, who strips naked in every possible sense as the woman who falls for young Joe in spite of herself. And a terrific performance by Matthew McNulty, who does justice to the many layers of a very subtly drawn character; you can see that canny brain constantly working behind his eyes, assessing every situation for danger or gain. For me, the only weakness here was the casting of Jenna-Louise Coleman as Joe's upper-class girlfriend, Susan; I couldn't quite share his intense attraction to her, so had to take it on faith.

This was compulsive watching, and though the ending will put you through a wringer, very worthwhile. Gold-standard TV drama.

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