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Sunday 4th December 2022


Another busy day which proved a bit overwhelming for our still poorly boy.
We went to get a Christmas tree in the morning and then made a film with the kids (in front of my green screen) where they were pirates and I was (for some reason) King Henry VIII. It was pretty cute. We didn’t get time to put the tree up, because after lunch we were going to see Matilda the Musical at the cinema. 
When we arrived there was a dad with two small kids sitting in three of our seats, but the cinema wasn’t full so we just sat next to them. I couldn’t really understand why they’d be in the wrong seats as everyone has reservations these days, but it didn’t seem worth disturbing two tiny girls unless we had to. 
Once the film started they all got up pretty quickly to leave. The dad made a comment that it was typical that the girls needed the toilet right at the start of the film, but they took all their stuff with them, and then never returned, so I suspect that they were actually in the wrong screen all along. Why did the dad pretend they were going to the toilet? To momentarily convince some strangers that he wasn’t the kind of idiot who would go into the wrong screen? Even though they’d work out pretty quickly what had happened? I knew before he was even down the steps.
Ironically had I confronted them about the seats in the first place then they might not have missed the beginning of whatever film they actually wanted to see.
Last time we’d seen Matilda at the theatre, Ernie was too boisterous and I’d had to take him out and miss most of the second half. This time within about fifteen minutes of the start he began to freak out a bit and say his tummy hurt and Catie had to take him out again. She ended up taking him home to get him some medicine so he missed pretty much the whole thing this time.
The film is pretty good (Phoebe preferred it to the stage version, but I didn’t) and some of the dance numbers (in particular Revolting Children) are superb. I feel that Trunchball gets off pretty lightly for murder and child abuse and was unsure about the complicity of all the teachers at the school (including Miss Honey). They really should have done more to protect the children. I am also not sure about the necessity for Matilda to have magic powers, which all seems a bit tacked on and the real victory comes from the students standing up to their tormentor, which they don’t really need telekensis for. But these are quibbles with Roald Dahl and don’t detract for anyone but the most pedantic idiot in the audience (unfortunately for me, that’s me). I missed some of the songs that had been taken out or truncated and I was also sad that my wife and son missed out on the film, but it was cool to enjoy it with my own revolting daughter. Trunchball may be a caricature, but back in the day harsh discipline and hitting kids was genuinely part of school life. It does seem ridiculous now that this was thought to be the best way to get through to kids. 
Then home to watch England reach the last 12 of the World Cup with Phoebe (Ernie went to bed and Catie wasn’t interested). Hopefully by this time tomorrow England will be in the last 10, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

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