A real estate broker finds himself having dreams that seem to be incredibly real. They are so real, in fact, that he begins to wonder which is the dream and which is reality.




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Episode complete credited cast:
Norman Shenley
Mr. Rayburn
Emily Shenley
Eleanor Summerfield ...
Lady Strudwick
Dr. Melbury
Patricia Mort ...


The real state agent Norman Shenley hates his old wife Emily Shenley and wants to divorce her to marry his secretary Lolly. When a new client wants to sell an old and isolated mansion, Norman begins to have odd nightmares, and he becomes confused between reality and dream. When Norman awakes, a surprise waits for him. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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Release Date:

27 September 1980 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


In the dream where Lolly is dressed up in shocking (no pun intended) pink, Lucy Gutteridge is wearing her wedding ring when Norman and Lolly inspect the block of flats, but not in the previous scene when they are in the office. Nor in any other scene in the programme. See more »


Emily Shenley: You see? You do need to see the doctor.
Norman Shenley: All right, but I also need a divorce!
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User Reviews

Surreal dream episode
16 July 2015 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

An odd, dream-like episode of the HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR TV series. RUDE AWAKENING stars the late, great Denholm Elliott in a role that seems to have been tailor-made for the actor. He plays a sleazy estate agent who can't keep his hands off his secretary and who harbours fantasies of butchering his nagging wife. He's disturbed by a recurring nightmare involving a body concealed in a posh manor house and a building falling down, and in the day to day course of his life that nightmare begins to come true.

Director Peter Sasdy contributes an effective dream-like atmosphere to the whole episode even if the plotting is a little vague. It's best watched as a series of sinister vignettes involving bizarre characters and haunting situations. I think my favourite scene involves the one being trapped on a building about to be demolished, which is effectively realised on what is obviously a very low budget.

Elliott is unsurprisingly strong as the lead, but the supporting cast also features some solid players, including Lucy Gutteridge who seems to get through more costume changes than Mr. Benn! There's a minor role for the ever-weird James Laurenson (THE MONSTER CLUB) and strong direction throughout which makes the slight story watchable.

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