An absorbing book, a camera or sketchbook outing, a good film… All of these have been excellent means of escape from lockdown, news bulletins, lack of a holiday, and the absence of family, friends and regular social gatherings.

A book group I belong to has been meeting online instead of at the library. We recently shared our choices of eight Desert Island Books which gave us insights into each other’s tastes and useful lists from which to try a new author or title.

I fancy doing something similar for films. A recent re-jigging of my study resulted in better access to my DVDs. They’re no longer in danger of toppling off an over-stuffed high shelf into a messy heap on the floor, as they’re now more accessible and neatly arranged in alphabetical order.

Recent viewings have included The Age of Innocence, Whistle Down The Wind and, last night, Roman Holiday. If you need a bit of cheer, Roman Holiday works wonders – and not just because the delicious Gregory Peck and a young and brilliant Audrey Hepburn star in it. Their 1950s day out in Rome – and it was all filmed on location there – is sheer escapism, lots of fun for them and for the viewer and, with a bit of fisticuffs and love thrown in, it takes the number one spot on my Desert Island Films list. Other contenders? The Great Escape, Dr Zhivago, Brief Encounter, Girl with a Pearl Earring, Rear Window. That’s eight. No space for My Fair Lady, Australia, Far from the Madding Crowd, Under the Greenwood Tree… so if you asked me again next week, I’d probably give you a different list. Have I whetted your appetite for escapism? If so, happy viewing!



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