Contact (1985) (TV) by A.F.N. Clarke

Discussion in 'Films, Music and All Things Artsy' started by topflat, Feb 26, 2008.

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  1. Hi

    first post here. What I'm trying to find is a copy of
    Contact (1985) (TV) by A.F.N. Clarke
    I'm putting a box together so my son has some idea of tours in Ireland

    Jim (xmg 72)
  2. I found it on Youtube, after finding a helpful link on this site. Otherwise just punch in Contact. Its spread over 3 episodes and a bit grainy but does the job.

    Got the book off Amazon, and in fact sent it on to my Number 1 son currently doing a tour of er.....Sheffield.
  3. Jim, are you after the book or the BBC Play for Today (or similar series) version, directed by Alan Clarke (no relation to AFN Clarke)?

    The book can still be found, but the last time this question was asked on here about the film, I think the conclusion was that the BBC had failed to release it, either on VHS or DVD. I know that when the Staff College library attempted to get a copy about five or six years ago the BBC said that they could provide a copy - but they asked for, IIRC, £400 for one VHS cassette. Strangely enough, their offer was declined.
  4. I thought this was as cool as fcuk at 15, now I don't think that the plt commander is a particularlly inspiring leader and I don't see how he is going to justify the second shot (without er lying)

  5. Thanks for the replies guys.
    I did get the youtube copy. Once I'd converted it for my TV quality went down hill. Still, it was worth the time and effort. I wish BBC would release it.
    It got the heart pumping, thinking about those night patrols around that area.

    Thanks again

  6. You and me both! I must be the same age as you. It made an enormous impression on me.

    I think as a drama it is very good. Tactics and drills are rather crap. What I think it did well was to show the relentless nature of the war and its effects on troops.

    A question I asked myself whilst watching it was:

    If all the voice procedure, Orders, hand signals and section level tactics had been done by the book - would it have been a better film?

    I don't think it would. It made its point and if there was a bit of artistic licence then OK. In a way, it showed how we would have liked to prosecute the campaign. It's very much a detached, third party view of the campaign and I think that from that point of view it is very sympathetic to the troops.

    I was here rather than there so perhaps my opinion isn't of any merit.
  7. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    Is Contact the show where some guy comes off (night?)patrol and walks behind a vehicle and shoots himself with his SLR?
  8. If this is what these days we call 'docu-drama', and begins with a shooting at a VCP, I remember the guys watching this more than once in 86 or 87 and it was deffo on a tape - I suppose it could have been a recording from the tele but I got the impression there was more than one copy doing the rounds, so assumed it was a commercial version.

    I remember being surprised that it wasn't the usual Hollywood bullsh1t but if it's the film I'm thinking of, we laughed unkindly at a scene where the brick 'ambushes' a weapons handover. But iirc they seemed to get the edgy, nervy atmosphere about right. Don't remember a suicide ...??

    (Don't rate my opinion of much merit after all these years either, mind you.)
  9. The suicide bit was from 'Breed of Heroes' another NI based drama (also based on a rather better book).

    I though Contact (tv) caught the tense atmosphere very well, the uncertainty. Always waiting for something to happen...
  10. The book was far different to the TV series and it covered two tours, one an urban one, the second rural.

    Breed of Heros was good, especially the shagging in 58 webbing scene.

  11. the book by AFN Clarke was really good.

  12. Hi everyone!

    My name is Nicky Clarke and I happen to be AFN Clarke's daughter. I came across this forum about my dad and thought I said hi to you all.

    I know he'll be please to hear that the book is still being read and the film is so keenly being looked for and watched.

    Thanks to you all!

    Nicky x
  13. Tell your Dad Nicky, it was his book that encouraged me into the Army, loved it and still a good read today...shame its not out on DVD, I'm sure it would sell well.
    Just out of interest what did he get up to after leaving the Para'S ?
  14. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    Excellent, another new user, welcome Nicky.