This film is part of Free

Once Upon a Sunday

The disappointment of youthful love, as the gritty realism of the early 1960s stands in stark contrast with the fantasies of the later 1960s.

Amateur film 1969 10 mins Not rated

From the collection of:

Logo for Yorkshire Film Archive


This is one of several exceptional award-winning films made over a seven year period by Bill Davison, once described by Glenda Jackson as, “the Ken Russell of the amateur film world.” This 1969 film cleverly contrasts, in quite an original way, the black and white realities of urban decay and the disillusionments of youthful love against the sunny optimism, and sexual fantasies, of the sixties; with a colourful psychedelic sequence set to Amen Corner’s ‘High In The Sky’.

Bill had been an avid cinema goer since the age of 8, and was drawn especially to black and white movies, which he thought more atmospheric. The actors were both from Selby Youth Club. This film has the atmosphere of the kitchen sink dramas of the early 1960s, set against the, often naïve, upbeat mood that rebelled against this grim world – a hybrid reality that could be found in the songs of, say, the Beatles and the Kinks at the time. The psychedelic sequence was inspired more by the advertisements of the day than the incipient music videos that originated with the Beatles. Bill’s later films often proved to be too innovative for other amateur filmmakers of an older generation: his 1975 ‘Sanctum’ was picketed.