Play for Today (1970–1984)
2 user 3 critic

Soft Targets 

A Russian in London finds himself targeted by British Intelligence.


Charles Sturridge


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?



Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ian Holm ... Alexei
Helen Mirren ... Celia
Nigel Havers ... Harman
Celia Gregory Celia Gregory ... Frances
Thorley Walters ... Old Wedding Guest
Margery Mason Margery Mason ... Celia's Mother
Hugh Thomas Hugh Thomas ... Castle
Tony Doyle ... Kirby
Chris Langham ... Drinkwater
Yuri Borienko Yuri Borienko ... Porter
Karen Craig Karen Craig ... Aeroflot Lady
Rupert Everett ... Boy at Party
Sarah Martin Sarah Martin ... Girl at Party
Kate Percival Kate Percival ... Bride
Diana Malin Diana Malin ... Waitress in Café


A Russian in London finds himself targeted by British Intelligence.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama







Release Date:

19 October 1982 (UK) See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Soft Targets is actually 1 hr 35 min long, not '1h 15min'. The '1 hr 15 min.' seems to be the running time for many, but definitely not all, episodes of 'Play for Today'. You can confirm the running time by actually playing the episode and/or by reading the Viewing Notes included in the 2008 DVD set. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Ever been in a situation...
18 May 2012 | by bob998See all my reviews

Helen Mirren At the BBC, disc 5.

This is a wonderful example of BBC drama at its best. Ian Holm is excellent as Alexei, the very low level Soviet operative in London, whose work seems to consist of taping trash TV shows for the delectation of people in Moscow. He is very bored with his "work", as who wouldn't be, and wants to be sent home. He understands that returning home can only depend on getting into trouble of a relatively minor nature--a slight car accident with no-one hurt might do the job, or being drunk and obnoxious in public. Imagine Alexei's despair when he finds he's so insignificant in the food chain that nobody wants to expel him.

Besides Ian Holm, Nigel Havers is fun to watch as the lanky FO man who presses Alexei into his entourage, and Celia Gregory (an actress I hadn't seen before) is mysterious as Frances the party girl. Helen Mirren plays the desperate Celia, whom Alexei falls for, hopelessly.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed