I very much enjoyed watching HOW I LIVE NOWÂ on the day that it was released – and I enjoyed it for a number of reasons.Â Perhaps not a film I would normally seek out – but I felt I had to on this occasion, not least because I know so many people who are in it.
Saoirse Ronan andÂ George McKay – the two leads – andÂ er… Tom Holland, my eldest son.Â The film wasÂ made last year in Wales and was a great experience for Tom and his brothers who visited the set. I visited too until I snapped my foot off in scootergate. TomÂ loved the whole experience of making this film. It was very different from making The Impossible. He was older, was mostly on location without his family and has made some friends for life. He loved the crew from Kevin McDonald down.Â George McKay is a great role model for any teenager. GeorgeÂ was around at our house the other night and my wife and I both remarked on the same thing. Tom, when you get to 21 – be as much like George as you can and you’ll be fine…
I also enjoyed the film because Meg Rosoff wrote a hit book and it is lovely to see an author get a little bit of sunshine to bask in. For a best-selling author, Meg is very accessible and normal. I hope that the film is as successful for her as she has no doubt dreamt it might be.
And aside from the film being very well made and worthy – I alsoÂ really enjoyed itÂ because it features my wife, Nikki.Â The producers were keen to dress the film-set where the family lived with photos featuring the cast in their younger days – step forward Nikki Holland – professional photographer now – but whenÂ Tom was young, an avid amateur learning her craft. In the film is a photographÂ of Tom withÂ his very first girlfriend – he was four at the time and this photograph is currently in our hallway and has always been a favourite of ours.
Seeing it on screen – albeit fleetingly – itÂ evokes so many memories and connections for me. Certainly, whenÂ this photo was taken, we had no idea that it might end up in a film. Plus I like the fact that my wife has muscled in to the movies as well. Good for her.
Now if the rest of my family don’t mind – it is now my turn….
I have a very real feeling that this is not going to happen.