However, sometimes, you get to introduce your kids to something for the first time, when they’re probably at just the right age, and you feel like you’ve helped them out.
It came up in conversation that my eldest (6) didn’t know who ET was. As if by the magic of scheduling, it was on ITV just a few days later. I hadn’t watched this in years and as a responsible parent I wanted to sit and watch it too, in case the weird little fella caused any concerns.
Spielberg gets the usual flack for being schmaltzy but you can’t deny the charm of the film. Personally it doesn’t get any better than the trick or treat scene where they encounter someone dressed a Yoda. Nice in-joke there for George Lucas and his similarly merchandise-friendly saga. Elliott even has Star Wars figures.
It’s also nice to see such a big sci-fi film where some of the special effects are properly schonky!! When you think how much Lucas tinkers with his many special editions, Spielberg has left ET largely untouched except for remastering it for DVD. No matter that at one point members of the search party walk in front of the camera and are looking clearly superimposed, apparently deliberately.
Anyway, the kids enjoyed it and it was a change from watching another Disney princess v evil stepmother figure. What was Uncle Walt’s chip on his shoulder all about?