Chris Tarrant: Extreme Railway Journeys: Railroad to Mandalay

Chris Tarrant: Extreme Railway Journeys: Railroad to Mandalay

Series 2

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Review

I think “ramshackle” would be a better word than “extreme” in the title of this show. Not in a bad way: Tarrant’s travelogues are enjoyably improvised and on-the-hoof (or the footplate), and necessarily so given the unpredictability of the ageing third-world railways he explores.

For the first of a new series, it’s the line from Bangkok to Mandalay, including what is left of the infamous “death railway” built by the Japanese with slave labour during the Second World War. Tarrant brings that story to life sensitively but then there’s a slapstick moment when, as he delivers a piece to camera on a perilous stretch of track, a train appears in the background of the shot, coming his way.

Summary

TV and radio presenter Chris Tarrant journeys by rail through some of the world's most challenging terrain, beginning with a trip from Bangkok in Thailand to Mandalay in Myanmar. Chris traces the route of the notorious Burma-Siam Railway, a 250-mile line built by the Japanese during the Second World War using enslaved Asian workers and Allied prisoners of war, visiting the famous site of the Bridge on the River Kwai along the way.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Chris Tarrant
Director Neil Ferguson
Executive Producer Nina Carbone
Executive Producer Dale Templar
Executive Producer Hugh Whitworth
Executive Producer Melanie Darlaston
Producer Neil Ferguson
Series Producer Hugh Whitworth
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Documentary