Archive for the 'TV and Film' Category

In Shadow

This is a rather wonderful piece of work.

(via jwz)

Things you don’t want to hear when you’re out night biking

Me: Was that rain? Or maybe snow?

Brett: Neither. I blew my nose.


Earthed 5

The first four of Alex Rankin’s Earthed mountain bike films have been consistently ace. The fifth in the series is due out in mid-November. Here’s the trailer:

You can pre-order it here.

Oh wouldn’t it be nice…

…if we could get away with just some of the silly ideas we come up with at work?

Alas I wasn’t allowed to put the Evil Edna button onto the live web-site.

It’s nearly film season again

CFSIt’s that time of year again: Cheltenham Film Society are about to enter their 61st season. Every couple of weeks throughout the winter, they show non-mainstream films from all over the world. It’s great if you’re into that sort of thing — you should join in!

I have a tendency to forget when the films are on, so I’ve put together a Google Calendar to tell me just that, along with what they’re about and so on. What’s more, I’ve made it public. It’s available in a couple of formats:

  • iCal: For users of Apple iCal, Google Calendar and any other software that supports the iCal format.
  • Atom: For use in your News/Feed-reader of choice.

I hope it’s useful to someone out there.

More filmage

So this evening I tackled The Last Samurai. Everyone told me it was good, but I resisted for a long time. A few reasons:

  1. Tom Cruise.
  2. It’s one of those historical epic things. Gladiator put me right off such films for a long while. 100% of not very good.
  3. Tom Cruise.

“This one’s got samurai though!” they tell me. True, and the Samurai were really bloody cool – right up there with ninjas. But Tom Cruise? I really struggle to take him seriously in any role at all. The likes of Top Gun and Days of Thunder have forever marred him as an actor.

But it’s in my housemate’s collection and I seem to be in movie mode at the moment, so I finally caved in.

I’ll give him his due: He was quite good in this. I really was willing him to beat Ujio on the training ground. He’s still a cheesy bastard, mind (please, stop it with the thousand yard stare) and his supporting cast was much better. Ken Wanatabe in particular was fantastic as Katsumoto, and Timothy Spall played the bumbling englishman as only he can.

Then there’s the scenery. I really want to visit Japan now: Lost in Translation made me want to see the cities and after seeing this I want to explore the countryside – though hopefully they’ve cleared up the mess of dead bodies and weaponry left behind after the massive battle scenes.

So in summary, it’s an epic, starring Tom Cruise, with one of the most ridiculous plotlines ever. A recipe for disaster really isn’t it? Somehow they’ve pulled it from the jaws of becoming another Titanic and made something quite enjoyable. It’s by no means one of the all-time greats, but it’s well worth watching.

So, films then

I’ve seen a lot of them lately…


A tale of friends, enemies, competition, love, demons, food, suicide, murder, and a girl in a bear costume – all set in Budapest’s underground system. Absolutely brilliant.

Hotel Rwanda

Not quite the heart-wrenching tale I expected it to be, and probably all the more watchable for it. It’s one of those films that makes you think long and hard about just how fickle western governments can be, and just how nasty the human race can be. Oh, and Owen – you’ve seen Sophie Okonedo in ‘Spooks’, ‘This Years Love’, ‘Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls’ and ‘The Bill’ (I know you’re a big fan) amongst other things.

Corpse Bride

Nobody told me it was a musical! I enjoyed it despite that and the singing didn’t make me cringe once. I must be ill or something.


I finally managed to see it on Saturday night. Its a feel-good film of the highest order – I defy you to watch this and not feel happy afterwards. You can tell it’s a Jean-Pierre Jeunet film a mile away, and not just because Dominique Pinon is in there. He has a certain style that really stands out.

City of God

It’s about boys growing up in Brazil’s slums. Despite the dark subject matter (life in the slums, drugs and gang warfare), it remains upbeat, good humoured and very enjoyable.

Æon Flux

This is complete tosh, but in a good way. There’s some fantastic fight sequences, special effects and stunts in there, not to mention Charlize Theron in very tight clothing (hummmna!). It’s just a pity that the cast appears to be made almost enitely of wood.

Right, I’m off to watch Magnolia. Wish me luck… [and then a little over three hours later]


Wow. I know several people who really didn’t like that, but they’re clearly all wrong :-) It’s an amazing film. I think I’d struggle to sum it up, simply because there’s so much to it. So I won’t, I’ll just recommend it, lots.

I saw it at long last!

This evening I finally saw the first episode of My Name is Earl.

Both Sara and Weon have been raving on about it since it first aired over in the states months ago, but I never found the time to sit down and watch it. They were right: It’s absolutely brilliant. I just hope the rest of the series lives up to this one…