Tuesday, 7 June 2016
411 Suez 1956
First viewed : 25 November 1979
This was a massive dramatisation of the Suez crisis which took up most of a Sunday evening , 3 hours and 10 minutes in total. I watched a portion of it, surreptitiously sniffing at the collar of my shirt for a last lingering trace of the greasepaint from the night before.
The play was written by Ian Prince Regent Curteis and sought to present the events of 1956 in a light sympathetic to the Prime Minister Anthony Eden whose career they brought to a premature end. Curteis did not seek to produce a definitive account of the crisis that ended Britain's pretensions of being a world power and thought the finished product was more of a docudrama than he intended.
I only had a very vague idea of what happened and didn't watch enough of the play to get the full picture but did pick up some useful information such as the fact that Israel was somehow involved in the conflict and that it distracted the world from the contemporary events in Hungary where the Soviet Union was violently suppressing the revolution against the policies it had imposed.
It's quite easy to see how this led Curteis to his infamous Falklands Play a few years later.