Electric Dreams (2017– )
7.2/10
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12 user 13 critic

The Commuter 

Ed Jacobson (Timothy Spall), a train station employee, is alarmed to discover that a number of commuters are taking the train to a town that shouldn't exist. When he investigates for ... See full summary »

Director:

Tom Harper

Writers:

Philip K. Dick (based on the short stories by), Jack Thorne
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Timothy Spall ... Ed Jacobson
Anthony Boyle ... Sam
Rudi Dharmalingam ... Bob Paine
Rebecca Manley Rebecca Manley ... Mary
Tuppence Middleton ... Linda
Anne Reid ... Martine Jenkins
Hayley Squires ... Waitress
Nicole Agada Nicole Agada ... Woman with Pushchair
Ann Akin ... Dr. Simpson
Rebecca Birch Rebecca Birch ... Engaged Woman
Tom Brooke ... Tall Man in Light Coat
Lauren Carse ... Police Officer
Brodie Jouxson ... Young Sam
Matthew Jure Matthew Jure ... Busy Man
Naveed Khan ... Helpful Pakistani Man
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Storyline

Ed Jacobson (Timothy Spall), a train station employee, is alarmed to discover that a number of commuters are taking the train to a town that shouldn't exist. When he investigates for himself, he comes face to face with an alternate reality that forces him to confront his own struggles around his relationship with his wife Mary (Rebecca Manley) and his very troubled son Sam (Anthony Boyle). Written by Channel 4

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Genres:

Sci-Fi

Certificate:

TV-MA
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Details

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 January 2018 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Macon Heights" (the fictitious location in the story) is an anagram of "Ghost Machine". See more »

Soundtracks

Three
(uncredited)
Performed by Chill Bump
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User Reviews

 
Train of thought
19 October 2017 | by LejinkSee all my reviews

Another good episode of this Channel 4 series dramatising Philip K Dick short stories, as a drastically slimmed down Timothy Spall's workaday railway station manager is led by a mysterious, now-you-see-her young woman (Tuppence Middleton) to escape his difficult personal life and mundane existence by stopping the train at a strange town where everyone appears happy, content and free from the stresses of everyday life.

Spall's character in particular struggles in his relationship with his mentally impaired son and by extension his long-standing wife so it's no surprise that his character is initially attracted to the utopian town of Macon Heights, although it somehow just doesn't sound right as a place name with the action moved to England. Here you get a great cup of tea, wonderful home made cake and a newly- engaged couple running up to you in the street full of the joys of life, but is it just a place to visit or would you want to live there? The secret lies in his tracking down the elusive Tuppence Middleton who apparently comes and goes at will. Unlike the two previous episodes, there's a definite, non-speculative ending to this one and the right one too I thought.

There were a few plot strands which escaped me, like the Groundhog Day events at the new town, the appearance of Spall's troubled son also at Macon Heights and his brief encounter with an elderly journalist, but the central point about facing up to the realities of everyday life was well made.

Less obviously futuristic than the two earlier episodes, there was comparatively little employment of big budget sets or special effects. This well suited the down to earth nature of the story itself which was well acted by Spall and Middleton in their contrasting lead roles.


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