Red Shift

Take a journey through English history in this film by Alan Garner and John MacKenzie.

Directed by John Mackenzie (The Long Good Friday, Just Another Saturday), this acclaimed and long-unseen BBC TV Play for Today from 1978 is adapted by Alan Garner (The Owl Service) from his own complex and enthralling sci-fi fantasy novel.

Red Shift takes the viewer on a beguiling voyage through English history, spanning three distinct time periods: Roman Britain, the English Civil War and 1970s modern day. Garner’s play tells the story of three troubled young men, Tom, Thomas and Macey, who occupy these different eras and are haunted by shared visions. They are connected through a shared location (Mow Cop in south Cheshire) and by the discovery of mystical talisman: an ancient axe-head.

Exploring themes of mysticism, folklore and geography that are common in Alan Garner’s fantasy novels, Red Shift is a uniquely compelling Play for Today from the golden age of BBC drama.

Special features

  • Brand new High Definition transfer
  • One Pair of Eyes: Alan Garner — All Systems Go (Lawrence Moore, 1972, 40 mins): an experimental, autobiographical documentary presented by Alan Garner
  • Interview with 1st assistant director Bob Jacobs and Editor Oliver White (2013, 5 mins)
  • Spirit of Cheshire (Kevin T Marsland, 1980, XX mins): Michael Hordern narrates as the voice of the ‘Silver Ghost’ Rolls Royce on a journey around the sites of the Cheshire countryside
  • Fully illustrated booklet with extensive credits and newly commissioned essays from David Rolinson, Alan Garner, Michael Brooke and Sergio Angelini

Product information

    • Certificate


    • Colour


    • Sound


    • Running time


    • Languages

      English language

    • Subtitles

      Optional hard-of-hearing subtitles

    • Original aspect ratio

      Original aspect ratio 1.33:1

    • DVD region

      • 2 Europe (except Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus), Middle East, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Greenland, French Overseas departments and territories

    • Catalogue number


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