Preest is a masked vigilante detective, searching for his nemesis on the streets of Meanwhile City, a monolithic fantasy metropolis ruthlessly governed by faith and religious fervor. Esser ... See full summary »
As a dedicated follower of the Discworld, I awaited The Hogfather with trepidation. It's not easy pleasing those of us who have already made the movies 100s of time over in our minds (take the hitchhikers Guide for instance, I joined the phenomenon with the TV version, Marvin is clumpy, Peter Jones IS the Guide, Zaphod's second head wobbles and Ford was surely Caucasian... I'm sure the radio initiates would disagree). Hell, let's not nitpick, the casting is marvellous (if only Steptoe had been there for Death's Butler... Mr Jason could have worn a pointy hat).
I wanted to love this though and was not disappointed. My "personal Albert" is thinner and scrawnier (more like a gentle human Greebo) as is my "personal Constable Visit" but I recognised every location. The sets still require some work from the watcher but the detail is fabulous, clearly made to demand a slow-mo second viewing scrutiny, and the props (ok, not the teeth) are exquisite.
I can imagine that prior knowledge is of great benefit as some scenes defy explanation by the uninitiated; Bloody Stupid Johnson's shower is surely included to stop people like me from complaining that it wasn't but Banjo's affiliation to Teatime is vague are the examples that spring to mind. Oh what a gorgeous name Tee-a-tim-ay is when pronounced thus! Why not 10/10? Adverts... the DVD should be marvellous and well worth a Spinal Tap 11 but to be introduced to Death, immediately followed by an underarm commercial rather killed the atmosphere the makers try so hard to create. I can't believe that Sky didn't make more of it, the way I trust the Beeb (bbc) would have... and that includes a semi-nonfunctional website with low definition wallpaper. So far the smell of self-promotion after part one on Sky's behalf almost overwhelmed the scent of the hogs and curry.
But production crew, hats off! Brilliant, you deserved a better platform for your masterpiece (and perhaps a few dollars more).
Fan of Pterry? You'll love it. First time with Mr Pratchett? You'll be hooked! Fan of Harry Potter? Terry came first! Buy the DVD! At last, a good family Christmas production like we remember from years gone by, guaranteeing a very HAPPY HOGSWATCH!
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