Well, a few years after the death of Keith Waterhouse who penned the novel in 1959, the film is to be celebrated again with a feature-packed Blu-ray edition plus a couple of screenings.
In case you have never seen it, the film is one of the very best early 60s movies and tracks the life of Billy, played by Tom Courtenay, as he lives a rather dull life in his humdrum northern town. All he has to keep him from going crazy is a wicked imagination – which delivers some wonderfully surreal moments in the movie. And then into his life pops Julie Christie, aka Liz, and he has a chance to escape.
Waterhouse also wrote a second Billy Liar novel – Billy Liar on the Moon – in which our hero is now married (but having an affair) and ensconced in a new town in the Midlands. Even though it is not a patch on the original it is a fun read and ties up a few loose ends from the initial book.
Maybe it is time for a third installment of the story with Billy as a very grumpy seventy year old – any takers?
Anyhow back to the reissue of the film.
According to Electric Roulette the disc comes with the following extras
• Remembering Billy Liar with Tom Courtenay and Helen Fraser
• Interview with Richard Ayoade
• A look through the Keith Waterhouse Archive with British Library Curator Zoe Wilcox
• Interview with Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley
• Stills Gallery
It costs £13.99 and is vaauible on May 6th.
And it can be seen live here.
Sunday 14th April, National Media Museum, Bradford, 10.50am
Friday 26th April, British Library Conference Centre, London, 18.00pm