Till Death Us Do Part (film)

Till Death Us Do Part is a 1969 film directed by Norman Cohen, written by Johnny Speight, and starring Warren Mitchell and Dandy Nichols. It was based on the BBC television series of the same name. Speight was the creator of the television version. The film was considered successful enough at the box office that a sequel, The Alf Garnett Saga, followed in 1972.[1]

Till Death Us Do Part
Directed byNorman Cohen
Produced byJon Penington
Written byJohnny Speight
StarringWarren Mitchell
Dandy Nichols
Music byWilfred Burns
CinematographyHarry Waxman
Edited byAnthony Lenny
Distributed byBritish Lion UK
Release date
  • 1969 (1969)
Running time
100 min.
CountryUnited Kingdom


The film begins in September 1939 shortly before World War II begins. Alf Garnett, a dockyard worker, and his wife Else have been married for only a few weeks, and are already weary of one another. Alf gets called up for military duty but is turned down because he's in a reserved occupation. The film depicts their lives during the London Blitz. Else eventually gets pregnant to Alf and Else's shock, and they have a baby daughter, Rita, in 1942. The war ends in 1945 with a huge street party and Alf, characteristically, gets drunk.

Midway through the film it advances from the end of World War II to the 1966 General Election. Rita is now a young woman and engaged to Mike Rawlins, a long-haired layabout from Liverpool. Alf dislikes him because of his support for the Labour Party. Mike and Rita marry in a Catholic church, further angering Alf. At the wedding supper he fights with Mike's family. But Alf and Mike grow a bit closer, attending the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final together.

The film ends in 1968 with the family moving to a new tower block in Essex after their East End neighbourhood street is demolished.



The film had investment from the Robert Stigwood Organisation.[2]



Time Out wrote, "In its favour, it preserves the original characterisations at something like full strength and doesn't attempt to stitch three weekly episodes together and pass it off as a feature."[3]

Box office

Till Death Us Do Part was the third most popular film at the UK box office in 1969.[4]


  • The theme tune was composed by Ray Davies of the Kinks. Sung by Chas Mills, it is heard briefly at the end of the film over the closing credits.
  • Location footage was filmed in Tower Hamlets.


  1. The Alf Garnett Saga
  2. City comment: Thanks to the pound Swan, Hunter; Stigwood, Robert. The Guardian 2 Aug 1972: 16.
  3. "Till Death Us Do Part | review, synopsis, book tickets, showtimes, movie release date | Time Out London". Timeout.com. Retrieved 7 March 2014.
  4. "The World's Top Twenty Films." Sunday Times [London, England] 27 Sept. 1970: 27. The Sunday Times Digital Archive. accessed 5 Apr. 2014
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