We have just had a lovely Sunday just gone. We went to see a showing of Channel 4’s The Snowman and the Snowdog in Leicester Square. As we stood outside the theatre snow swirled into the air above us and so the magic began…
The Snowman and The Snowdog is the brand new sequel to the Christmas classic The Snowman and will be shown on Channel 4 at 8.20pm on Christmas Eve. Both little foxes sat with their mouths open in enraptured silence throughout the film.
Raymond Brigg’s iconic children’s book The Snowman was adapted for the screen in Channel 4’s first year on air (1982). The Oscar-nominated film, wordless apart from its evocative theme, has been screened by Channel 4 every year since this first transmission.
Father Christmas bought this book for our little foxes the year Louis was born. We have the wordless version, I feel it is somehow easier to deal with the ending this way. I just answer the children’s questions about the pictures and yes it is sad, but…
On the 30th anniversary of the original film, Raymond Briggs has given his blessing to a sequel this time with a new friend, The Snowdog – complete with odd socks for ears and a satsuma for a nose. Many of the team who worked on the original film have worked on the sequal, in close consultation with Briggs, and the hand drawn animation is wonderful.
A young boy and his mother move house, the boy discovers a secret box hidden under the floorboards of his bedroom. In the box, he finds a hat, scarf, lumps of coal and a shrivelled tangerine – that we, if not our children, will recognise! Later that day it starts to snow and the boy builds a Snowman and a Snowdog, that night, at the stroke of midnight, the two magically come to life.
The boy awakes and joins them on an amazing adventure, flying over modern London and onwards. We had spent the previous evening in town and driven past many of the London landmarks in the film, so, this gave the children a lovely introduction to the new flying sequence. The new Snowman is complete with a brand new soundtrack and ‘Light The Night’ which features in the flying sequence is more pop based than the original theme. Andy Burrows, the former drummer with Razorlight, is the man who has written the song for this sequence and whose voice we hear.
It is of course a slightly bitter sweet film. I was in tears within the first 5 minutes, my children held it together until the end of the film. Even Mr Fox was glassy eyed as we talked about it after. It was just lovely, there is no other way to describe it, and we came home and put our Christmas tree up. Christmas is truly here now!
There is also a Snowman and the Snowdog game for the iPhone, iPad, Android phones and tablets that Louis and Una have been hooked on. Yes, I am one of those mothers who hands her kids her phone to keep them quiet, and this game is fab for younger ones. It has all the characters from the film and is FREE to download from app stores. It’s a little more, shall we say “mellow”, than Angry Birds and the like and I am much happier listening to the music from this one than most.
The Snowman and The Snowdog is a Snowdog Enterprises and Lupus Films production.
Lupus Films specialises in producing TV programmes and films for children and families, working across all genres and techniques including 2D and 3D animation, puppets, live-action drama and factual entertainment.