During a lunch date this week with my old friend Greg, the name Val Guest came up. The late British film and television director had a long and successful career, producing some fine work along the way: my two favourite pictures of his are The Quatermass Xperiment (1955) and The Day the Earth Caught Fire (1961). As our conversation revealed, my friend has seen much more of Guest's feature film work than have I.
I had to end the subject with a joke:
Greg is a bit of a Space: 1999 fan. The British-produced series ran for two years, 1975 - 1977, and utilized a few directors of note, including Charles Crichton; who had been a noted Ealing Studios comedy force and would later helm A Fish Called Wanda (1988).
I reminded Greg that Guest directed a few episodes, including "one of my favourites from the series when it first ran"....
(holding up three fingers from right hand)
The one with the three trees....The Rules of Luton.
Greg rolls his eyes and shakes his head gently from side to side....
No, no, no, no, no....
I can still remember the captions to a making-of-1999 photo set:
"Director Guest demonstrates" (pic 1, brandishing spear) "and monster emulates" (pic 2, critter does the same while Martin Landau recoils in terror).
Yes! Good memory.
"The Rules of Luton" was fun; with some fine characterizations... which is why Series Two was a big step up from the blethered Series One.
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