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  1. #1
    Junior Member Country: United States
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    When I was a child back in the mid-fifties I saw part of a movie and it has been driving me nuts since.



    As I recall, and please remember, it has been a long time, the film was about a family in London. The father was in uniform, either military or police/civil defense. He was away when his home was bombed and he thought family was dead. The child survived but thought the father was dead.

    When the child was little the father used to sing "Long long ago" by Thomas Haynes Bayly (tell me the tales that to me were so dear, long long ago, long long ago). The child wanders London hoping to find her father and the father is roaming around humming the song missing his daughter.



    I know this is a needle in a haystack search. The movie was on daytime TV in the '50's so it is pretty old. I saw half the movie at a neighbors house and got called home for Sunday dinner and have wanted to see the movie since.



    Any help or hints appreciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Country: Europe
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    name='Daithi']When I was a child back in the mid-fifties I saw part of a movie and it has been driving me nuts since.



    As I recall, and please remember, it has been a long time, the film was about a family in London. The father was in uniform, either military or police/civil defense. He was away when his home was bombed and he thought family was dead. The child survived but thought the father was dead.

    When the child was little the father used to sing "Long long ago" by Thomas Haynes Bayly (tell me the tales that to me were so dear, long long ago, long long ago). The child wanders London hoping to find her father and the father is roaming around humming the song missing his daughter.



    I know this is a needle in a haystack search. The movie was on daytime TV in the '50's so it is pretty old. I saw half the movie at a neighbors house and got called home for Sunday dinner and have wanted to see the movie since.



    Any help or hints appreciated.


    Can't help directly but a Google search threw up a similar request which might offer a couple more clues to help identify the film:



    "years ago, in the UK, I remember watching a romantic weepy film on TV. I am almost sure that the film ended with a woman sitting with a young child, and the child says "tell me the story of long long ago",then the music of that song ends the film. I asked my mother, but she cant remember. Can anyone help with the title of the film,or any clues where I might find out?"

  3. #3
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    hi daithi,



    its 8 months since your message, but i think i can give you some information. not

    surprisingly, the name of the movie that comes to mind is "long, long ago." i also have kind of an obsession about this story.



    this was a tv movie in 1954. i was about 7 years old. my parents and brother were still asleep, so i was essentially alone. a movie started on tv, black and white, fairly somber music background, then the title on the screen: long long ago. the first scene shows a stormy night, and a man and woman are apparently just moving into this large rather spooky looking old house. everything is kind of shadowy and film noir. after a few minutes of unpacking or whatever, they hear this tapping noise, over the howling wind, and trace it up to the attic, to which they promptly head.



    so far, pretty standard haunted house type of scenario. then they look out a glass door leading from the attic out onto what i guess was a widow's walk, or perhaps the roof itself. there is a person out there. my first impression is that the person is not wearing pants, and i think of superman (picure him with the leotards) but then it becomes apparent that it is a child, in old fashoined sleepware, standing in the rain and wind. they bring the child inside. the child is a boy, played by tommy rettig. he seems to be in a daze. then you hear in the background someone singing the song "long long ago." kind of a creepy voice, and i don't know if it was a man or a woman singing. well, tommy rettig hears the singing, jus like the audience hears it. with a rather vacant look on his face, he looks up at the camera and says "song." possibly he repeats the word. the man and woman don't hear the singing and have no idea what he is talking about. they conclude that he is delerious from fever, and decide that they need a doctor for the kid. so the husband runs out to the car and drives off to town, or wherever, to find a doctor. just as he is pulling away, the wife finally hears the creepy singing and starts screaming for the husband to come back. naturally, with the engine noise and the wind, he doesnt hear her and keeps going. so now we have a terrified woman and a kid who isn't quite right, in this big spooky house on a stormy night, with some auditory spectre lurking in the background. as a 7 year old, i'd had enough. i was really freaked out and turned off the tv.



    later on, i worked up the nerve to to tune back in. it turns out that the movie was almost over. it is the scene that one of your respondents, fellwanderer, describes, except that the child is a boy. i remember the ending dialogue and music pretty much as she does. I will try to get this message to her too.



    i saw this tv movie once, 55 years ago, and still remember it well because of the impression it made on me-it was really erie, and spooky, and creepy, and i am still fascinated by my memory of it. i have a few times done internet search, which is how i found your posting. if you do a google search, "long long ago tommy rettig," you will find a listing for the movie, referring to pepsi-cola playhouse, with some details and more story background. thank you for the opportunity to remenisce about a child hood experience.

  4. #4
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    I'm not sure that you will see this as it's been a while. I've been trying to find more details about a movie I think from 1953, with a song called Long, Long Ago in it. The movie or TV film may also be called that, with Tommy Rettig (who was in all the Lassie shows). The movie has long haunted me too, and there's not much on the Internet that has led me to find out more, so I'm not sure the info I just gave is valid.



    Please let me know if you have any other news about this film.

  5. #5
    Member Country: UK
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    Maybe this one? Tommy rettig was in it according to IMdb



    "Your Play Time" Long, Long Ago (1953)

  6. #6
    Member Country: UK
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    Saw it, mid 50s. I can add no information but using a precis of the plot got me 99% in an English test!

  7. #7
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    Daihti, and all:



    Thank you all so much for discussing this film! I, too, have been haunted by a vague recollection of this movie! I also was 7 years old when I saw it, so it must have been the original showing on the Pepsi Playhouse. We were on the verge of leaving Denver, Colorado, for a year's stay in Puerto Rico. Then, when we returned and were driving up the coast from Florida, I remember staying at a creepy motel in North or South Carolina and seeing the darn thing again!



    Over the years I have thought about that movie time and time again, and yet up until tonight have been unable to find any information about it. One day in the late 1990's when I put in "long, long ago" into that hot, new search engine Alta Vista, I found a place that sold old vinyl and had a copy of Patti Page singing the song, "Long, Long Ago." Of course I had to buy it!



    Over the next few years I occasionally looked for the movie, but came up short. Then tonight I started thinking about it again, and so began yet another search on Google using various terms I thought might work. Finally I stumbled onto this site and read your posts. Then, following Mikey46's advice, I put in "long long ago tommy rettig" and found a link to "sinistercinema.com" where a DVD of "DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE" (1913) plus "LONG, LONG AGO" turned up!



    Naturally, I ordered it immediately, and can hardly wait to see this short piece again. Weird how those things stick in our little minds, isn't it? I'm sure the experience of seeing it again will not meet my expectations, but I will feel that at least I attain some degree of closure. I will post my thoughts here after watching it!



    Thanks again for the tip, Mikey46!

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