Film Review: Ethal and Ernest (2016)

Fig. 1 Ethel and Ernest poster (2016)

Ethel & Ernest (2016) a true story, was originally a graphic novel, and then animated film by the English author and illustrator Raymond Briggs. The story is about the lives of his parents, from their first meeting in 1928 to their deaths in 1971.

Raymond Briggs is an English illustrator, cartoonist, graphic novelist and author, who has achieved great success amount adults and children. The is ultimately known for is story, The Snowman (1978), a picture book without words of a snowman that comes to life and takes the boy who built him on an adventure. The book was then created into a 26 minute TV special in 1982. And was noninated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film.
Briggs is also known for another picture book, Father Christmas (1973) and Father Christmas Goes on Holiday (1975). These were also both adapted into 25 minute animation in 1991.

Fig 2.

The story is simply about the lives of the normal couple, from the time they first met in the late 1920's, to their deaths in 1971.
Ethel started off as a lady's maid with middle class aspirations and shows notions of respectable English behavior. She then becomes a house wife when marrying Ernest, who was 5 years younger, and is an easygoing milk man. Ernest had socialist ideas and an largely interested in modern progress and tech.
They lived with thier only child, Raymond, in a London suburb through the Great Depression and World War II. The book richly illustrates Londons working class life and concerns during some of the hardest times in 20th century.

The film had a mostly up beat and positive, trying to make the best even though times were hard. But it did hit on some themes and maters. One of the theme was death. Along with the war, parents would have to send away their children, and maybe face that they migh not see each other again. We see this during the film when thewar has ended but Ernest is reminded that his neighbour has lost their child. And at the end when Raymond sees his paraents dead, the way they have been draw, shows darkenss and a scribble, rather than the clean neat lines throughout the film.
Another dark issue, is Raymonds girlfriend who is a schizophrenic, people back then didnt really understanf mental illness unlike today. But its a wider spoke about into days world.





Illustration list:

Figure 1. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1725969/

Figure 2. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/films/0/ethel--ernest-review-raymond-briggs-honors-his-parents-with-slow/

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