Life I watched The Box of Delights this afternoon, my final course screening of the year, the BBC adaptation from twenty years ago. One of the most enchanting three hours I've spent watching anything. This manages more excitement than the first two Harry Potter films put together and although every now and then there's a slightly ropey special effect, it has the capacity to feel like an event -- I was suddenly ten years old again, watching for the first time. It leaves some of the fantastic open for your imagination -- it doesn't show you everything and leaves it up to you to decide how man becomes wolf or Kay Harker can shrink or go swiftly. If nothing else I don't there is another tv series which has both Nick Berry and Julian Sands in minor roles.
It was also fancy dress day. I thought I'd be clever and go as movie Arthur Dent so there I was in a blue bath robe, with a towel and Guide (actually a travel translator). Then two other Arthurs walked in. Eventually there were a smattering of Red Riding Hoods, some Arthur King of the Britains and a Merlin (the eventual winner). Really -- a fancy dress lecture. How cool is that?
So my first course module draws to a close. I wrote about it here originally, and I kept that excitement throughout. What I love about film, and why I'm doing this course is that there is always something new to see, new to discover. Although some of the course films have been difficult to sit through and some of the readings challenging, not once has it stopped being exciting, or enthralling. At the end of it all, in today's lecture we watched Peter Davison become Colin Baker outside the Caves of Androzani as a way of demonstrating how fantasy can help us understand and deal with change. I was suddenly emotional again.