In 1939 Gracie Fields, the 'Queen of Hearts', is at the height of her success as a singer and actress and the whole nation seems to wish her a speedy recovery from cervical cancer. When World War Two breaks out, Gracie sings for the troops despite poor health, to the dismay of her fussy husband, film director Monty Banks, an Italian, born Mario Bianchi. With Italy's entry into the war Monty is in danger of being interned so Gracie consents to his moving to America whilst she tours Canada, fund-raising for the war effort. She is accused of deserting the country which made her famous and booed offstage, though she later tours battlefields as a singer. With the war over she regains popularity, performing 'Take Me To Your Heart Again' at the London Palladium. Banks dies in 1950 and, though still a successful singer, Gracie never regains her pre-war iconic status.
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Did You Know?
Made as one of a three-part season "Women We Loved" on BBC Four. The other two films in the series were Enid
(2009) and Margot
(2009). See more
The Canadian flag shown did not exist until 1965. See more
[after her serious illness, Gracie wants to return to work, entertaining the troops in France, but Monty thinks she should rest for longer
They say work is the best tonic.
Schweppes is the best tonic - the best tonic, drunk with gin, on the terrace of a hotel in Capri.
References Trouble Ahead
Red Sails in the Sunset
Written by Jimmy Kennedy
and Will Grosz
Performed by Jane Horrocks See more