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They Drive By Night is an amazing British classic. It has to be one of the most sombre British films of the thirties.It is also extremely interesting as as a timepiece
The truck drivers and their local pit stops are all captured well in this slice of early British cinema. Shorty , played by Emlyn Williams in a superb performance is released from prison and sets off to see his girlfriend, he discovers her dead body in an amazingly powerful sequence. Terrified he will get the blame he goes on the run hitching a ride from a sympathetic truck driver.On the way he encounters an assortment of various characters , all diverse and entertaining. This film is wonderfully acted by all the cast. If you don't blink you will see William Hartnell who played TV's very first Dr. Who as a bus conductor.
Much later as the tone of the film completely changes from gripping thriller to downright terror he meets Ernest Thesiger who in a remarkable performance completely dominates the last 25 minutes of the film as a very eccentric chap indeed.It is a tragedy that the director Arthur B. Woods died so young, he displayed a unique talent. If you can search this film out you will be highly rewarded with a film that you will never forget.
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