Swallows and Amazons

Swallows and Amazons is  set in the mid 1930’s about young children having a golly good time in the English countryside, is this something that the modern filmgoer wants to see.

I suppose we have to ask this question because this is from the Enid Blyton school of filmmaking where nothing too bad really happens, in fact not a lot happens full stop. But these children have a rather spiffing adventure. Tally ho and all that.

Am I putting my modern outlook onto this movie possibly, but what responsible parent these days sends four young into the countryside and onto a very deep lake with no lifejackets, little or no sailing experience and not much more than a fruit cake for sustanance, really and they say some modern parents are irresponsible !!

Anyway taking off my sarcastic hat now and getting down to reviewing this movie, the book that this movie is based was written by Arthur Ransome. A number of things have been changed in this movie including the name of one young character now renamed Tatty, she used to be named well just let’s say replace that ‘ A ‘ with an ‘ I ‘, ” Stop sniggering everybody in the audience “.

The children find themselves on a train journey to their usual summer holiday haunt with their mother ( Kelly McDonald ). Father is a sea captain, so he merits no more than an odd mention through the movie. While on the train they encounter a gruff, rude sort of character portrayed by Rafe Spall, who we later learn is named Jim or nicknamed Captain Flint. For a lot of the time we are not really sure if he is the villain of the peace and he seems to engage in a lot of mysterious underhand behaviour and is  being chased through the Yorkshire countryside by two men of equally dubious character.

While blundering from one mishap to the other they encounter two girls called Nancy and Peggy, who pilot the little sailing boat ‘ Amazon ‘ a lot more expertly than they can control their boat ‘ Swallow ‘, which miffs them no end. But despite this and some minor skirmishes they come together to foil the illicit plot of the two men who have tried to capture Captain Flint

As I mentioned earlier, I wonder who this movie aimed at, children are a lot more worldly wise nowadays and would parents bring their children to this movie saying ” See, children this is what children got up to before Facebook,  Snapchat and computer games “. Is it aimed at those who hark back to a more simpler time. Who knows, I certainly not sure myself. But in time I think that this movie will lazily pass some wet Summer afternoon.

Well isn’t that rather jolly, children !!



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