Kino Eye: Labour conformity

Submitted by AWL on 30 September, 2020 - 7:58 Author: John Cunningham
Nigel Barton

Rebecca Lawrence’s article on the Labour Connected conference in Solidarity 564 set me thinking about a film which might capture that sense of conformity and dullness described in her report. Instead of a film, I would recommend two BBC dramas by Dennis Potter: Stand up, Nigel Barton and Vote, vote, vote for Nigel Barton. Both were broadcast in 1965 as part of the Wednesday Play series. We follow Nigel Barton, from his youth in a mining village to Oxford University where, unsurprisingly, he struggles to fit in. Later, Barton stands as the Labour candidate in a safe Tory seat, where he comes under pressure from his party agent to conform and toe the line. Barton abandons his principles and ends up as just another uninspiring, dull Labour candidate. Available on DVD.

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