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Set texts for the lockdown

I noticed, early in the lockdown, how certain film topics seemed to be creeping up the lists of recommendations on the platforms. There was Outbreak, something called Pandemic (bit on the nose), 93 Days, The Forgotten Plague, and, of course, Contagion, the Steven Soderbergh film with the stellar cast that had completely passed me by. […]

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John Roderick, of several podcasts, has a term for subscriptions. These ongoing payments suck money out of your bank account on a regular basis in return for [services] and if you’re not careful, they’ll suck you dry. Roderick calls them eels. They’re attached to your major arteries and sucking blood. Picture yourself as an Ood […]

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When I stand back and take a good look at it, I cannot honestly say that Netflix is worth the money to pay for it full-time. Obviously, there’s enough on the service to keep you busy for a few months, binge-watching the good stuff. But then, what are you missing out on if you unsubscribe […]

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Woodstock taking

I watched the director’s cut of the Woodstock movie this weekend. It was, I would say, moderately entertaining, although there was not really enough of what you’d call the best music, and way too much of stuff that wasn’t very good to start with, and which has dated badly. Jefferson Airplane, I ask you. Not […]

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I have thoughts: 1, 2, 3

1. For example, I have thoughts about Travelers, season 3 of which just landed on Netflix. This mid-budget Canadian science fiction show delivered on the promise of its first two seasons and is definitely worth your time. I reviewed Season 2 this time last year, and my dearest hope is that I’ll be reviewing Season […]

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Rams – documentary by Gary Hustwit

One of the treasures of my digital movie collection is Helvetica, Gary Hustwit’s documentary about the world’s most ubiquitous (and my second least favourite) typeface. So when, a few years ago now, I saw the publicity for a Kickstarter campaign to fund a documentary about Dieter Rams, the influential product designer, I signed up. Last […]

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Childhood Canon

Sometimes you hear a podcast episode and think wistfully how you’d like to have been on it. Recent Incomparable episodes about childhood canon and recent conversations with colleagues about learning to read had me thinking about the media that shaped my tastes. I’m less interested in film and television than I am in books. I […]

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Annihilation / Jessica Jones season 2

Either I’m getting jaded from Too Much TV, or both of these recently released Netflix properties were somewhat disappointing. I’m not sure if I’ve ever read any of Jeff VanderMeer’s fiction. One of the oddest things about the science fiction field is that, even after 45 years or so of reading it, there are still […]

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Thoughts on Coco

Weird to see some reviews of Pixar’s Coco today, with its official release date tomorrow, because it has of course been in UK cinemas for a week already. I saw it last weekend with my 17 yo kid (who paid, much to my delight). I can’t really review films without reviewing the audience. In this […]

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A few reviews

Bit of a general round up, because one can’t consume anything these days without reviewing it. Star Wars: Rogue 1 (iTunes) Seemed like a pointless cash grab to me. Tim McGraw and Faith Hill: The Rest of Our Life (iTunes) An album of duets from Country music’s First Couple. There have been a number of […]