Indie-mation, Reviews

[REVIEW] ‘Ethel & Ernest’

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I love an epic superhero showdown as much as the next girl, but in this age of bigger is better, sometimes I yearn for something simple at the cinemas. I love movies where you feel like you are a fly on the wall of actual human beings who’s only super power is living awesome lives. Such is the experience you can have with the recent UK export Ethel & Ernest. This is a completely lovely slice-of-life story that will warm your heart and give you hope for the new year to come.

Ethel & Ernest is based on a graphic novel by Raymond Briggs, and it chronicles the marriage and lives of his parents, Ethel and Ernest. It starts with their courtship and marriage in 1928. Ernest is a milk man who is smitten with a housemaid Ethel. People think they are crazy, but they get married and start a life together!

Then we see them have their son Raymond and experience the challenges of World War II. It is all simple, ordinary stuff, but that’s where the beauty of the story is. Jim Broadbent and Brenda Blethyn are perfect to play the title roles. I can’t imagine any other voices as these characters!

This simplicity is heightened by the lovely watercolor animation. In the world of CG bombastic animation, it was refreshing to see animation that looks more like a storybook illustration. It reminded me of Ernest and Celestine in a way.

The music is also wonderful, featuring a new song from Paul McCartney! You can’t go wrong with that!

It seems like many are discouraged about 2016 and the year to come. If you are feeling this way, a movie like Ethel & Ernest seems like just the thing to inject some hope into your heart. It certainly had that effect on me. It was heart warming and adorable to see a couple overcome the stresses of life with their love persisting through it all. This is the hope of most men and women I know—a hope to find a love that will last no matter what.

Here is the trailer for Ethel & Ernest if you want to learn more.


Edited by: Kelly Conley

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About Rachel Wagner

Rachel has loved animation since she was a little girl singing songs from The Little Mermaid at the top of her lungs. She currently works in social media marketing and loves to blog and vlog about Disney, Pixar and all kinds of movies in her free time. Her favorite movie is Up and she considers herself quite the Cinderella aficionado seeing every version she can get her hands on. She also loves animated TV shows like Simpsons, Gravity Falls, Star Wars Rebels and more. Follow her on twitter @smilingldsgirl
  • Sounds sweet.

  • I forgot about this movie.

  • Jordan Briskin

    Well, when it comes out on DVD, I’ll be sure to give it a look-see.

  • Callum J

    It’s fantastic. Another brilliant Raymond Briggs adaptation like The Snowman and Father Christmas. It was on BBC One this Christmas.

  • GabzGirl

    It’s really good isn’t it? I saw it over Christmas last year and it’s such a lovely, charming and emotional story. The animation is gorgeous too, very reminiscent of the Snowman.