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The Optimists of Nine Elms

The Optimists of Nine Elms

Peter Sellers is superb in a warm, wistful family drama, in which two Battersea kids forge an unlikely alliance with a faded music hall star.

Drama 1973 106 mins

Director: Anthony Simmons

Overview

This charming chunk of warm-hearted whimsy stars Peter Sellers - excellent as Sam - a washed up music hall performer befriended by two neglected South London schoolchildren. Gently combining comedy, character and sentiment, this somewhat Dickensian drama was entirely shot on location, playing out against a rough and ready Battersea backdrop long-since transformed by urban renewal.

Sellers delivers a wonderfully well-realised, fully-rounded portrayal under the assured direction of Anthony Simmons, and is complemented by two talented, skilfully-cast child co-stars: Donna Mullane and John Chaffey - suitably spiky as his occasionally astringent young acolytes Liz and Mark. Meanwhile, dog-lovers will delight at the antics of Bella, Sam's perky performing pooch.