With cinemas remaining dark for the foreseeable future the streaming services are now our main source of films and the choice is vast with Disney about to flood the market with hundreds of films from their purchase of 20th Century Fox and US TV shows.
My choice this week is a new release premiered on Netflix-The Dig. This is the story of the 1939 excavation of a burial mound at Sutton Hoo in Suffolk and if the idea of a two-hour film on digging out an earth mound seems less than exciting then think again. This is a delight, a beautifully crafted story of human relationships at a time of impending war with the dig as a symbol of how ancient history collides with momentous world events.
A Suffolk landowner and widow Edith Pretty hires a local self-taught archaeologist, Basil Brown, to excavate the large burial mounds on her estate. He eventually discovers the preserved outline of a ship and the central burial chamber which leads to the discovery of gold and jewel artifacts dating from the Anglo -Saxon period.
But that is the background to the story of the seriously ill Edith and her young son and how Basil becomes a father figure to the boy interlinked to the failed relationship of a couple in the large professional team brought in by the Cambridgshire archaeologists to the exclusion of Basil Brown.
The intertwining of these relationships in the face of war makes this a gentle but compelling experience and having seen the Sutton Hoo Treasures at the British Museum and visiting the site two years ago the film resonates personally, and it is a fascinating story.