The Death Of Sir Christopher Lee

Today we learned of the death of Sir Christopher Lee. These are my unprepared thoughts at the end of the day.

This isn’t an appreciation of his body of work, more a personal appraisal of how it was realised, has sunk in, and now been accepted.

There may be spelling mistakes and grammatical imperfections. Forgive me.

I’ve been both expecting and dreading hearing this news for a while now. He was the last of the classic horror icons, a very old man, and we knew it would happen sooner rather than later in the grand scheme of things. I regularly check the news throughout the day and night (while awake) and knew that at some stage either I’d have to break it to my wife (a bigger Hammer / Lee fan than me, and I’m a big fan) or she’d have to break it to me, possibly on waking up.

I was at work, mid afternoon, just finished one thing so thought I’d do a cursory check of BBC News. Damn. My boss, also an appreciator of the filmic arts, wasn’t at his desk. I knew this wouldn’t mean as much to anyone around me as it did to me, so refreshed to make sure it was real, took it in, then went to the toilets on the next floor up to have a little cry. The rest of the afternoon was coloured by the thought that I would have to tell my wife. I’d actually prepared for it mentally as I knew it would happen some time, but I knew how upset she would be.

I passed her work on the way home, and it was quiet, so I decided to go in and tell her rather than do it at home a bit later. I teared up, as I had to say it out loud and I knew we would both be sad, but it was ok. It meant that there was no breaking of sad news the moment she walked through the door, and we could plan the inevitable weekend Christopher Lee film fest 🙂

It’s a few hours later now, and we’ve watched Dracula (1958) on blu ray and also the fascinating extras, and now if I’m honest, sad as it is, it also feels like a relief. The man has left an incredible body of work, including kicking arse in the last Hobbit film so a worthy send off, so now we can appreciate it in its fullness. There were unlikely to be (m)any memorable roles in the future (I could be wrong here, and no offense to anyone who knows otherwise) and so it means we can appreciate all of his best work without wondering about what was to come.

I really hope that doesn’t sound bad, of course I didn’t want him to die, but it’s happened and we will never forget him. It’s been heart warming to see the number of people on Twitter either watching or planning to watch the great man’s films this weekend. We immediately retrieved all that we could find from the blu ray and DVD piles, and will as a result rewatch some classics – some of which I haven’t seen since I was a kid (40, as you ask)

That’s it really. RIP Sir Christopher Lee


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