The Night My Number Came Up (1955) Dreams, Omens & Final Destination

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Opening with that distinct, recognisable voice of Paddington BearCommander Lindsay (Michael Hordern) worriedly confronts an air traffic control officer with news that a Dakota airplane has crashed landed at a certain point over Japan.  The control room officer is convinced that no distress warnings have come in or the fact that the Dakota isn’t even on that flight path. “How do you know this?” he asks, “I can’t say but if I did you wouldn’t believe me but please believe me I know something has happened!” replies the Commander.

The Night My Number Came Up (1955) Commander Lindsay (Michael Hordern)

Tagline – The Screen’s Most Terrifying Flight Into Suspense!

The night before, Commander Lindsay had a prophetic dream, a dream so real he remembers every detail, every small part of this dream works its way to a terrifying and devastating climax. But lucky for Commander Lindsay he was just a voyeur and wasn’t on the plane itself but he does know a few of the crew. Compelled to tell his story he confides in young Fl. Lt. McKenzie (Denholm Elliott) an ex ace fighter pilot from WW2 and aide to the ice cool Air Marshal Hardie (Michael Redgrave).

The Night My Number Came Up (1955) fate unlucky numbers 13 opening titlesThe Night My Number Came Up (1955) Dakota airplane Douglas C-47 Skytrain

The Commanders dream had told him there were 8 passengers and 5 crew, 13 in total. For poor Owen Robertson (Alexander Knox) this was a story he didn’t need to hear, not with his petrified fear of flying. Luckily the dream had other facts, like there was one female member of the crew, also an important diplomat and an obnoxious loudmouth. Their passenger crew numbered five and didn’t featured any of these other mentioned people. The dream couldn’t possibly come true! Could it?

The Night My Number Came Up (1955) michael redgrave fate fear panic Nigel Stock pilotThe Night My Number Came Up (1955) Denholm Elliott Alexander Knox Sheila Sim

Tagline – 13 on a Plane – Destination…The Unknown…

Find out what happens on this flight path with doomed fate looming around every corner. Watch how paranoid thoughts give way to fear, panic and hysteria. Is it best to just sit back and ride the fate with the notion that your cards have already been dealt or do you try and change your fateful collision with the grim reaper?

The Night My Number Came Up (1955) Dakota airplane Douglas C-47 Skytrain flying

This is a wonderfully acted mystery thriller which keeps you right on the edge of your seat. It’s fascinating to watch how the dream gets passed around from passenger to passenger like a hot potato, slowly working itself into the fears and minds of each and everyone. Each dealing with it in their own way.

A few fun facts

  • Actually based on a true life events? Whaaaat!! I hear you say. Well give Air Marshal Sir Robert Victor Goddard a google after you seen the film.
  • A fun little appearance by Bill Kerr of Tony Hancock’s Half Hour fame and his soldier buddy Alfie Bass.
  • Director Leslie Norman has directed episodes of so many classic cult TV series from the likes of The Persuaders, Department S, The Avengers, The Saint, The Champions.
  • Also stars Richard Attenborough’s wife Sheila Sim in her final film before she retired. Richard would later work with Leslie on his 1958 film Dunkirk.
  • This film is from the Ealing Studio’s camp

End thought “If you didn’t know about it, would it still happen?”

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