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Visions of Change: Evolution of the British TV Documentary, Vol 1 in December

16 November 2015

On 14th December the BFI will release a 2-disc DVD set, Visions of Change: The Evolution of the British TV Documentary Volume 1: BBC 1951 – 1967. It features 10 documentaries from the likes of Denis Mitchell, Dennis Potter, Ken Russell and John Schlesinger, made at a time of huge innovation in this genre.

Produced by the BBC, these now rarely-seen documentaries reveal how the medium of television allowed filmmakers to approach their subjects in new and exciting ways, creating work which was deeply personal, socially engaged and formally innovative.

Covering a range of topics, and including films by such influential directors as Denis Mitchell, Philip Donnellan, Ken Russell, Dennis Potter and John Schlesinger, Visions of Change provides a fascinating insight into the socio-cultural landscape of two of the most formative decades in the history of post-war Britain.

The programme makers were inspired by the changing face of city streets to capture portraits of life in Britain in different ways, while arts and sciences provided the subject matter for an explosion of factual series in a time of social, cultural and technological upheaval. These programmes were watched by millions of people and made household names of their filmmakers and presenters.

This 2-disc set collects together over 6 hours of material and will appeal as much to anyone with an interest in British social history and 50s/60s culture as to those with an interest in the history of television itself.

Visions of Change: The Evolution of the British TV Documentary Volume 1: BBC 1951 – 1967 will be released on UK DVD as a 2-disc set on 14th December 2015 by the BFI at the RRP of £34.99.

The contents are as follows.

Disc One:

  • Henry Moore (1951, John Read)

  • Eye to Eye: Night in the City (1957, Denis Mitchell)

  • Tonight: Song of the Valley (1957, John Schlesinger)

  • Joe the Chainsmith (1958, Philip Donnellan)

  • Eye on Research: Test Flight (1959, Philip Daly, Tom Millett)

  • Morning in the Streets (1959, Denis Mitchell, Roy Harris)

  • Between Two Rivers (1960, Dennis Potter)

Disc Two:

  • Monitor: Pop Goes the Easel (1962, Ken Russell)

  • The Colony (1964, Philip Donnellan)

  • Dispute: Round 1 (1967, Jack Gold, Ken Ashton, Paul Watson)

  • Dispute: Round 2 (1967, Jack Gold, Ken Ashton, Paul Watson)