The Bells Go Down (May 17, 1943)

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The Bells Go Down
 

Released on May 17, 1943: As World War II begins several young London men join the Auxillary Fire Force without a clue to the horrors of war that lay ahead.

Produced by Michael Balcon

Directed by Basil Dearden

The Actors: Tommy Trinder (Tommy Turk), James Mason (Ted Robbins), Philip Friend (Bob, Robert James Mathews), Mervyn Johns (Sam), William Hartnell (Brookes), Finlay Currie (District Officer McFarlane), Philippa Hiatt (Nan Elizabeth Harper), Meriel Forbes (Susie), Beatrice Varley (Ma Turk), Norman Pierce (Pa Robbins), Muriel George (Ma Robbins), Julian Vedey (Lou Freeman), Richard George (Police Constable O'Brien), H. Victor Weske (Peters), Leslie Harcourt (Alfie Parrot), Ralph Michael (Dunkirk survivor), Frederick Piper (Police Sergeant), John Salew (landlord), Charles Victor (Dunkirk survivor Bill), Grace Arnold (canteen lady), Alfie Bass (unknown), Lesley Brook (June), Frederick Culley (Vicar), Stanley Escane (choirboy), Leo Genn (off screen narrator), Stanley Lathbury (Verger), Andreas Malandrinos (Mr. Vanetti), Peter Noble (Auxiliary Fireman), Johnny Schofield (milkman Jack), Ben Williams (head of the rescue squad)

 
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Life, Death, and "Just Tommy"

On September 11 . . . . You know which year . . . . I was working in an office in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, creating table tents, newspaper advertisements, wall posters and other graphic stuff for the fellow who employed me . . . Oh yes . . . I was also learning to create web pages . . . . . Anyway . . . . Something big was happening, and we were not as connected to the world as we are today . . . Looking out the window at E14th street and St. Clair Avenue only a couple of blocks away from the center of Cleveland I saw cars lined up bumper to bumper along St. Clair Avenue heading out of the city . . . stopped in gridlock fashion and not moving . . . I remember thinking that I was glad that it was the middle of the day and not near my quitting time because I didn’t want to spend time sitting idly in that gridlock . . . I didn’t learn until later that a plane out of Newark New Jersey was headed straight for Cleveland and had been hijacked. I didn’t know that all of the downtown Cleveland high-rise buildings were ordered to be evacuated immediately . . . I didn’t know that the plane would turn course and head toward Washington, but with the help of courageous passengers would soon crash into a mountainside about a mile from where I lived during my teen years in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. I didn’t know what a ‘first responder’ was . . . But I soon learned about brave New York City firemen and policemen who were rushing into the twin towers as frightened people were rushing out . . . men called First Responders . . . This movie was rarely seen outside Great Britain but now you and the rest of the world can watch the love, laughter, life . . . . and death . . . of some London boys and girls during the worst days of the biggest war this planet has ever seen . . . so far. The movie was filmed while the war was still in progress . . . It was still not known if England would survive . . . the homes and the citizens of London would be bombed every night for almost a year, with only the brave men of the Auxiliary Fire Brigade between families of London and fiery death. Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the adventure.

Andreas Malandrinos
Andreas Malandrinos
Beatrice Varley
Beatrice Varley
Beatrice Varley
Beatrice Varley
Ben Williams
Ben Williams
Charles Victor and Ralph Michael
Charles Victor and Ralph Michael
Finlay Currie and James Mason
Finlay Currie and James Mason
Finlay Currie
Finlay Currie
Frederick Culley
Frederick Culley
James Mason
James Mason
James Mason and Meriel Forbes
James Mason and Meriel Forbes
James Mason and Muriel George
James Mason and Muriel George
James Mason and Tommy Trinder
James Mason and Tommy Trinder
James Mason
James Mason
James Mason kisses Meriel Forbes
James Mason kisses Meriel Forbes
Meriel Forbes
Meriel Forbes
Meriel Forbes and James Mason
Meriel Forbes and James Mason
Meriel Forbes, Muriel George and James Mason
Meriel Forbes, Muriel George and James Mason
Meriel Forbes
Meriel Forbes
Mervyn Johns and Richard George
Mervyn Johns and Richard George
Mervyn Johns, Tommy Trinder and Philip Friend
Mervyn Johns, Tommy Trinder and Philip Friend
Mervyn Johns and Tommy Trinder
Mervyn Johns and Tommy Trinder
Mervyn Johns
Mervyn Johns
Muriel George and Meriel Forbes
Muriel George and Meriel Forbes
Muriel George
Muriel George
Norman Pierce and Muriel George
Norman Pierce and Muriel George
Philip Friend
Philip Friend
Philip Friend
Philip Friend
Philippa Hiatt and Philip Friend
Philippa Hiatt and Philip Friend
Anne Gwynne
Richard George
Richard George
Richard George
Tommy Trinder
Tommy Trinder
Tommy Trinder and Beatrice Varley
Tommy Trinder and Beatrice Varley
Tommy Trinder and Finlay Currie
Tommy Trinder and Finlay Currie
Tommy Trinder and James Mason
Tommy Trinder and James Mason
Tommy Trinder and Meriel Forbes
Tommy Trinder and Meriel Forbes
Tommy Trinder, Philip Friend and Finlay Currie
Tommy Trinder, Philip Friend and Finlay Currie
Tommy Trinder and Philip Friend
Tommy Trinder and Philip Friend
Tommy Trinder
Tommy Trinder
Tommy Trinder
Tommy Trinder
William Hartnell
William Hartnell