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"Johnny and the Bomb"
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Reviews & Ratings for
"Johnny and the Bomb" More at IMDbPro »

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25 out of 27 people found the following review useful:

Solid adaptation

Author: Mel J from Dundee, Scotland
7 May 2006

'Johnny and the Bomb' is the perfect example of the BBC actually using our licence fee money to produce excellent entertainment instead of squandering it on dreary soaps and repetitive music competitions.

This television teen drama, based on Terry Pratchett's novel, centres the whirl-wind adventure thirteen-year-old Johnny and his friends are drawn into when they help a seemingly homeless old woman Mrs Tachyon. They discover her trolley of bin bags contain not rubbish but a means of travelling back in time and they soon find themselves reliving the Blitz, circa 1941. However, by messing with the timeline, the children are forced to face the repercussions when they return to their own time and find out they changed history, resulting in Johnny's grandmother being killed as a teenage girl in a German bombing. The gang have to put things right otherwise they will have created a future where Johnny had never been born.

The characters are all solid and engaging (and unlike the recent 'Harry Potter' adaptations, there is no dumbing down or sexing up of the young characters just to appeal to kiddies), remaining true to how they are in the book, with the child actors throwing themselves into their characters. The kids all deliver great performances despite the fact they are all relatively new to the acting scene. And Zoe Wannamaker is excellent as the scatter-brained, eccentric Mrs Tachyon.

'Johnny and the Bomb' is a nice mix of science fiction, light fantasy, drama with a smidgen of romance. It doesn't just show the kids prancing about having a good time in the Forties but deals with how they cope with this unfamiliar time, touching on racial and sexual stereotypes the kids have never really come across before. As such, while it is aimed at teenagers primarily, adults who are fans of Pratchett novels or just like sci-fi/lite-fantasy will no doubt thoroughly enjoy this. As an adaptation, I think it is certainly a success. Obviously there are some changes from the novel but, for the most part, it has remained faithful and definitely maintains the essence of what made the book a great read.

I only hope the BBC make more dramas of this vein as it is definitely more entertaining than the usual drivel you tend to find it airing. Dramas, be it those aimed at kids or adults, are the BBC's strong point and it is a shame they don't produce more as 'Johnny and the Bomb' is probably one of the best British shows I've seen this year. It would be nice to have this available on DVD at some point soon.

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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Excellent Kid's Movie

Author: slake09 from Silver Lake, Ohio, USA
20 July 2007

Very watchable kid's movie about traveling in time to do a good deed, and the problems you might run into along the way. The kid's are amusing and well intentioned, the story is well done, the production values are high.

I watched this with my 7-year-old son, who took time off from planning the overthrow of a world ruled by adults, and he enjoyed it quite a bit. The part he liked most was that the kids were busily trying to save the adults from their own foibles; the idea of kids knowing better than adults is near and dear to every young child's heart.

There is some humor at work here along with the kid's serious quest to right some wrongs, and the optimistic message that good intentions and a will to make things right will succeed in the end. That's a good message for kids, and probably for adults, too.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Very Enjoyable

Author: cka2nd from United States
26 January 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is yet another example of good, solid, made-for-television British Juvenile Science Fiction. I wish the U.S. produced the like. The strength here is in the acting, for the most part, and in the relationships among the characters, past and present. The plot, on the other hand, is a bit rickety, with the young leads repeating actions that really didn't need repeating if they had just gone back in time a little farther.

Still, I enjoyed it quite a bit, and got a kick out of seeing actors who I'd seen before in the Horatio Hornblower and Harry Potter movies, Downton Abbey, An Education and The Boys Are Back. If you've got a DVD player or computer that can play DVD's for any region, I recommend it for fans of British SF juvenilia, Terry Prachett (an author I've not read), George Mackay (who played Johnny Maxwell and was also seen in The Boys Are Back) and, to a lesser degree, time travel stories.

By the way, it's presented in widescreen and there are no extras on the DVD.

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johnny and the bomb

Author: deepbluedesires from Canada
10 September 2007

just finished downloading it and watched it right away .......really enjoyed it....i mean for a kids movie it was surprisingly good and it dealt with a lot of different issues running the gambit from racism all the way to sexism to how the current theories of time travel works.....and the running gag

with the constable being flipped by the little girl ........cute...will recommend it to my friends with kids....and when i'm done with this i'm going to the local library online and get the set of books it's based on............


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