Reviews: Peter Pan and Sightseers

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Two days, two very different shows. Yesterday, thanks to a Jack FM competition and the fact that Russell Grant's brother once capsized my canoe, I went to see Peter Pan at the Waterside Theatre in Aylesbury with my mum, brother, sister-in-law and nieces, aged 3 and 5. I haven't seen a panto for years – the last one I went to was a low budget, but very entertaining one in Aldershot.

Architecturally, The Waterside theatre has a distinctly Scandinavian feel to it, both inside and out, though the panto was decidedly British. It started slowly, with a few song and dance numbers, and I was concerned that the traditional panto had perhaps had its day – especially given there was no principal boy or dame in this performance. However, the appearance of a very sinister Captain Hook signalled the start of the audience participation and the remaining show was full of boos, hisses, catchphrases and singalongs. The 12 Days of Christmas was a highlight, part of the show was done Gangnam style and Russell Grant's cabin boy came complete with Strictly references and jokes about cruising … An entertaining evening, enjoyed equally by all three generations of my family!

And so to today, and a very civilised lunchtime spent in the Phoenix Picture House in Jericho, Oxford where the bar was open and we were able to sup a pint of Leffe while watching British black comedy Sightseers. This is the tale of an odd couple who embark on a caravan sightseeing tour of northern England, taking in the Crich Tram Museum, Mother Shipton's Cave and the Keswick Pencil Museum while offing anyone who annoys them along the way! Not a film for anyone with a weak composition as there were some stomach-churning moments but I really enjoyed this dark tale, which combines laugh out loud humour and comic book violence to create the oddest of love stories. Very impressed by the cinema too, and I think Sunday lunchtime film outings may become a more regular occurence!

 

Avatar – surprisingly good!

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My 12 year old son has been nagging me to take him to see Avatar for weeks now, and up till now I’ve avoided it. To be honest it just didn’t appeal to me – the trailer didn’t look very interesting, I hate wearing 3D glasses and I thought it would be all good looks and no substance. Eventually I gave in and agreed to take him at the weekend – but then messed up by assuming that everyone else would have already been, not pre-booking tickets and arriving to find the screening full! Oops.

Anyway, we prebooked for last night and, of course, the cinema was almost empty this time, sod’s law really. I joked to Dan that I was planning on having a sneaky snooze behind the glasses but to be honest, I wasn’t actually joking.

So the film started and I thought, “Here we go, prepare to be bored” … and then was completely blown away by the film!

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