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Friday, 22 February 2008 07:35

Cold Lazarus

Dennis Potter's wilful last testament ...

 

UK - 1996 - 4 episodes (60 mins) - colour

The second part of Dennis Potter's valedictory diptych that began with Karaoke, the deeply poignant Cold Lazarus continues the story of writer Daniel Feeld 374 years after his death.

The test subject for the Larazus Project, Feeld is being used by a team of scientists led by Emma Porlock at the Madson Science Centre, to successfully revivify his cryogenically preserved head. Regenerating the brain cells through chemical inducements, the team discover they can bring his memories to life on the Living Wall.

While their experimentation incurs the wrath of would-be autocrat Martina Matilda Masdon who is only concerned with the huge overspend, media mogul David Siltz, the president of Uniplanet Total Entertainment only sees the potential in broadcasting Feeld's past life memories to the masses. As the city becomes host to terrorist attacks perpetrated by dissident Luddites who espouse Reality Or Nothing, Feeld gradually becomes aware of the interested parties vying for his memories and manipulates them to his end.

A fitting conclusion to his life and work, having named his cancer after Rupert Murdoch in response to his utter loathing of the media tycoon, Dennis Potter created an outrageous vision of the future to satirise the growing crass commercialism and media exploitation. Knowing Cold Lazarus would be his final work, he uses Feeld's visualised memories to reference his life and the already established masterpieces while voicing concerns as to how he expected to be remembered.

 

REGULAR CAST
Albert Finney as Daniel Feeld
Frances De La Tour as Emma Porlock
Ciaran Hinds as Fyodor Glazunov
Henry Goodman as David Siltz
Diane Ladd as Martina Matilda Masdon

 

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