TV UK TV

Home (BBC-4 2003, Antony Sher, Matilda Ziegler)

Home Antony Sher

In Home Gerald Ballantyne, after a double blow of an accident and his wife leaving him, begins an exercise in suburban living, refusing to step out of the front door and not initiating contact with the outside world.

Initially he is confident that he can manage for months, he has food to last him several weeks but within a month he has run out and has taken to eating whatever scraps he can find in the garden (including a very gross worm smoothie) and even resorts to pulling his own tooth out. As the experiment continues he begins to believe the house is also taking on a life of its own. By day 38 it appears to Gerald that the rooms in the house are getting bigger and that the attic is the opening to an undiscovered world.

As the need for food becomes more intense the neighbours pets start to go missing and later the arrival of a man to repossess the television gives Gerald a whole new food source.

An intense study of a descent into agoraphobia and madness with yet another superb performance from Antony Sher. Some clever work to make him look thinner and thinner as the story unfolds and ample use of video cameras allows Home to almost take the form of a monologue at times with just a few incursions from others into Gerald’s world. Based on a story by the always incredible J.G. Ballard this is another high quality drama from BBC 4 and one that won’t be forgotten in a hurry by anyone who sees it.

production details
UK / BBC-4 / 1×60 minute episode / Broadcast 6 October 2003

Writer and Director: Richard Curson Smith / Story: The Enormous Space by J.G. Ballard / Costumes: Katy McPhee / Production Design: Melanie Allen / Music: Andrew Phillips / Producer: Richard Fell

cast
ANTONY SHER as Gerald Ballantyne
MATILDA ZIEGLER as Paula Goddard
DEBORAH FINDLAY as Margaret Ballantyne
GUY HENRY as Martin
KEITH ALLEN as Repo Man
SIMON NAGRA as Policeman