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It's Halloween and friends Nick and Kate are on a mission to find the biggest pumpkin in the patch. Unfortunately, the pumpkin they choose is haunted by the ghost of the Headless Horseman, and he wants his head back.
This is not the best version of Kenneth Grahame's wonderful book, but it is a very enjoyable one. It is amusing and charming with memorable, quirky performance and great costume and set design.
The adaptation does look visually pleasing, with colourful costumes and sets and the scenery is beautiful. The camera work was also creative, with interesting angles. The story is still well-constructed, well-paced, fairly true in essence and has many charming interludes particularly the Piper at the Gates of Dawn sequence which was a delight to see.
The writing is also playful and witty, particularly with Toad, and the characters are still their likable selves. The acting is in general very good. Matt Lucas occasionally overdoes it, but he also seems to be enjoying himself. Bob Hoskins is a wonderful badger, while Lee Ingleby is a touching Mole and Mak Gatiss a suitably subdued and subtle Ratty. Mary Walsh is lovely too, Imelda Staunton is very amusing and while the weasels are a slight disappointment they aren't in a lot of it to distract too much.
Overall, a very enjoyable TV adaptation. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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