The BFG (1989)

Friendly as Ever

Waking up late at night, Sophie, an orphan, sees, much to her surprise, a giant walking the streets acting mysteriously. Taken by the giant to his home in Giant Country Sophie is relieved to discover she has been taken by the BFG, The Big Friendly Giant, whose job it is to deliver pleasant dreams to all the sleeping children. But whilst Sophie joins the BFG on his job they are followed by some nasty giants who plan to eat the children. But Sophie has a plan which requires a dream and the Queen so that she will send the army to defeat the bad giants.

For some reason I though I had been introduced to Roald Dahl's "The BFG" through the TV series "Jackanory" but it seems I was wrong and in fact it was during my late teens when this animation was made. And that is one of the great things about this made for TV animation as the minute I started watching it transported me back to 1989 and the amusement I felt the first time I saw the BFG or heard him say "snozzcumber". Of course a lot of that is down to the wonderful writing of Roald Dahl and the wonderful confused country bumpkin style of talking which he gave the BFG but it is also down to the brilliant choice of David Jason to voice him and he certainly feels like he has drawn on his old friend Ronnie Barker's various characters for inspiration.

Now of course "The BFG" is an animation from back in 1989 a time when the artists ability with pen and brush was of greater importance than the ability of a computer system and there is something quite charming about the animation work in "The BFG" even if it doesn't have the full shine of a big screen animation with some aspects of it quite simplicity. In fact with some musical elements which reminded me of the synth sounds of the 70s there is something quite innocent about it all which is fitting considering the charm of the story.

What this all boils down to is that whilst "The BFG" was never a great animation it has stood the test of time and for those who watched back in 1989 as children or teenagers are likely going to feel pretty nostalgic when watching it now as with its simple but beautiful animation work it transports you back in time.