Those that remember BBC’s Sunday night consumer programme fronted by Esther Rantzen will have memories of a variety of daft features – the dog who could say sausages or Esther herself getting arrested on the streets of London as she tried to get the public to taste bat soup. But at the other end of the spectrum the programme did some remarkable pieces with one of the most notable involving Nicholas Winton, a sort of Schindler who rescued a huge number of children from the Nazis, who years later sat in the programmes studio audience and got the biggest surprise. It’s ripe for a film as can now be seen with the release of the One Life trailer.
ONE LIFE tells the true story of Sir Nicholas ‘Nicky’ Winton, a young London broker who, in the months leading up to World War II, rescued 669 children from the Nazis. Nicky visited Prague in December 1938 and found families who had fled the rise of the Nazis in Germany and Austria, living in desperate conditions with little or no shelter and food, and under threat of Nazi invasion. He immediately realised it was a race against time. How many children could he and the team rescue before the borders closed?
Fifty years later, it’s 1988 and Nicky lives haunted by the fate of the children he wasn’t able to bring to safety in England; always blaming himself for not doing more. It’s not until a live BBC television show, ‘That’s Life!’, surprises him by introducing him to some surviving children – now adults – that he finally begins to come to terms with the guilt and grief he had carried for five decades.
Whether this could be another Oscar winner for Hopkins remains to be seen but the film will be screened at the AMEX Gala at BFI London Film Festival on 12th October 2023 and is released in cinemas on 1st January 2024
related feature ; Anthony Hopkins does horror in Richard Attenborough’s ‘Magic’
Here’s the One Life trailer…..