Words by Naomi Jeffreys
Sometimes we find it hard to separate ourselves from the films we watch a children, perhaps it is because of the memories which they evoke, or the yearning for a simpler time, with no bills to worry about, or indeed the arduous essay deadlines. Maybe this is true to the eagerly anticipated ‘The Snowman and the Snowdog’, the sequel to Raymond Briggs’ classic film, ‘The Snowman’.
Briggs himself begrudgingly agreed to a sequel, maybe this was a mistake, sometimes things can’t be repeated and maybe they shouldn’t.
‘The Snowman and the Snowdog’ was a harmless film, which followed one boys story in his discovery of the Snowman and in recreating the love lost with his family dog, which died within the first few minutes of the twenty five minute short film. And is recreated in the patchwork ‘Snowdog’.
It is hard not to compare the two films, the animation has stayed true to the original which was, sketchy, hand drawn and rough. But, with a few more advancements, the colour was brighter, the new ‘HD’ has crept its way in to the film. In the inevitable flying sequence, the once innocent operatic singing voice of Peter Auty was replaced by a Coldplay-esque Indie rock band.
Instead of rolling English fields, we saw the Shard towering above London, with glimpses of the OXO tower and of course, The London Eye. London has changed and the Snowman must change with it. The adventures felt rushed and predictable, and the ending even more so.
There was only a glimpse of the magic from the first film, but, maybe the younger audiences who viewed this film on the Eve of Christmas, will have captured something of the magic of Christmas, just like I did, all those years ago.