The first of these two films is a straightforward documentary from 1964, in which Russell shows us the work of James Lloyd, a down-to-earth northerner who worked on the railways throughout the week, but devoted his free time to painting beautiful pictures in the pointilliste style. When, a year or so later, Russell decided to make a dramatised account of the career of Henri Rousseau, he thought of Lloyd, whom he had liked as well as admired, and realised that he was, roughly speaking, a modern British equivalent to the French customs officer and Sunday painter. Without much difficulty, Russell persuaded Lloyd to make his acting debut as "Le Douanier". The resulting telemovie was very enjoyable, and Lloyd (not disguising his northern accent) had great presence in the lead. Both films were very affecting, and deserved repeating. Have they ever been issued on DVD?moreless
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