This drama tells the real-life story of retired schoolteacher Christopher Jefferies who was initially questioned by police as a suspect in the murder of Jo Yeates who rented a flat from him...
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This drama tells the real-life story of retired schoolteacher Christopher Jefferies who was initially questioned by police as a suspect in the murder of Jo Yeates who rented a flat from him. He was vilified by the press, partly on account of his eccentric appearance and long flowing hair, even after he had been released on bail by the police.Written by
Named after a German novel by Heinrich Böll released in 1974, which had a very similar storyline in which a young woman finds herself being harassed by the media and police for crimes she did not commit. See more »
Superb acting, respectful of tragedy, important message
The drama portrays very sensitively a particular individual in extraordinary circumstances. The acting by Jason Watkins is outstanding, using subtleties of body language/tone to convey the oddities of an individual while allowing a balanced impression of the whole human being to come through. The script also, importantly, seemed respectful of the family tragedy at the heart of the story.
There has been a comment that the drama is 'propaganda for the Leveson inquiry'. However, the drama is ultimately about media intrusion into private lives so inevitably must make reference to Leveson; it would be quite an omission if it didn't! So there is no point criticising it for that. I am no great fan of ITV but 'hats off' to them for broadcasting this; what is more worth criticising is the lack of exposure by all other media outlets of an excellent drama.
By the way, I haven't used the word 'eccentric' in the above because actually we are all odd in our ways - every one of us - which is why the message from the film is so very important. Its about protecting individuals from the media machine, not about protecting so-called 'eccentrics'.
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