1963, Rialto Pictures, 98 min, UK, Dir: John Schlesinger

Tom Courtenay is wonderful as the frustrated, imaginative young man prone to flights of fancy - which also lead him to lie about nearly everything, whether he feels he needs to or not. This gets him in hot water with his stern father and his two very different girlfriends, not to mention his undertaker bosses, though his fast wit make his ambitions as scriptwriter for a TV host seem almost plausible. But when finally confronted with an opportunity to leave home and go to London with free-spirited friend Julie Christie (in her stunning feature film debut), we’re left to wonder whether Billy’s Walter Mitty-ish dreams are models for the future or an escape from reality.

1976, Paramount, 125 min, USA, Dir: John Schlesinger

Nail-biting political thriller with Dustin Hoffman investigating the death of his government agent brother, Roy Scheider - and running smack into Nazi-on-the-run Laurence Olivier, in one of his most wildly entertaining performances. Marthe Keller earned a Golden Globe nomination for her role as Hoffman’s ill-fated girlfriend.

1990, Morgan Creek, 102 min, USA, Dir: John Schlesinger

Young lovers Melanie Griffith and Matthew Modine buy and restore a gorgeous Victorian house, but their dream home soon turns into a nightmare when they rent an apartment to the tenant from hell, played with chilling intensity by Michael Keaton.

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