Sunday, 22 May 2016

Neil Gaiman's Likely Stories

Because I am a lucky sod, on Thursday, I got to attend a  preview screening, at the BFI, of 'Neil Gaiman's Likely Stories', which are to be broadcast on Sky Arts, starting on 26th May.

The evening started with live music from Jarvis Cocker,  supported by a 7-piece orchestra, as he played the songs composed for each of the four stories

There was then a short conversation with Neil, Jane Pollard and Iain Forsyth (who directed the series) and Jarvis Cocker. 

Neil explained that he had sent Jane and Iain a list of the the 40 or so short stories which were available and they had chosen four, not necessarily the four he would have expected..
Neil |Gaiman, Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard

Then we got to watch the films. The series consists of 4 of Neil's short stories; Foreign Parts, Feeders and Eaters, Closing Time, and Looking For The Girl, and for the screening they were all shown as one smooth whole, although I think they are being shown as separate episodes when it airs on TV.

And they are very good indeed - the films capture the dark , unsettling nature of the stories, both in content and in the style in which they are shot, and the music perfectly complements them. 

I was a little wary, a adaptations of books and stories so often fall short, and fail to do justice to their source material, but these don't.

All of the tales were set in London, but a darker, more mysterious and inexplicable London than the one you normally see.

It left me wondering, as I walked back from the Southbank, what exactly might be going on, just out of sight, and what it is that you half-see, from the corner of your eye, at such times...

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