December 4th, 2009

thinking

'I have to write some letters first...'



Sad today to hear that Richard Todd has died, aged ninety. His most famous film role is, of course, as Guy Gibson in The Dambusters. Eric Coates' theme music was very much part of the background to my childhood. Now it makes me cry. David Frost chose the tune for Desert Island Discs, saying that whenever it was played, 'people stood up'. It's not just because they like the music, is it? I like the film very much but I always wonder, like Barnes Wallis, whether the end can possibly have been worth the sacrifice. (I've stopped wondering; I don't think it was.) It was still a very heroic operation and I challenge anyone not to have a tear in the eye at Guy Gibson's last words in the film, which you can hear in this clip.