Film Review: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy [dir. Tomas Alfredson; 2011]

So, is it as good as everyone’s saying? My answer: very nearly. Yes, there are times when Le Carre’s tale of a search for a mole in the British Secret Service feels as though it’s been inelegantly rammed into a two-hour running time. Yes, Tomas Alfredson’s direction sometimes displays too much of the sterile coldness that was also in evidence in Let The Right One … Continue reading Film Review: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy [dir. Tomas Alfredson; 2011]

Film Review: Oranges And Sunshine [dir. Jim Loach; 2010]

In a nutshell: amazing story; very disappointing execution. Jim Loach’s debut feature recounts the true incidents that led to social worker Margaret Humphreys’ discovery of a shocking, long-running, UK-government scheme of forcibly relocating poor and/or illegitimate children to Australia. Their parents were told that the children had been adopted and were therefore no longer contactable; the children themselves were told that their parents had died. … Continue reading Film Review: Oranges And Sunshine [dir. Jim Loach; 2010]

Spouting Utter Nonsense

Last week, a fair amount of publicity surrounded a speech made by Baroness Warsi at Leicester University. If you’ve got a few minutes to spare, it’s an interesting read and it highlights what I’ve long considered to be a growing problem in UK society. Sadly, I’m not sure how we’re going to solve it. When reasonably well-educated, middle class people feel comfortable spouting utter nonsense … Continue reading Spouting Utter Nonsense

A Few Fundamentalists

Here are a few moments from a recent conversation with an educated, middle-class, thirty-five-year-old English male. It all started with the Middle East, then moved on to the subject of revolutions and then somehow got on to this: He: The problem is that Muslims are being allowed to take over European countries. They want everything their own way. They want to impose their religion on us. It’s like … Continue reading A Few Fundamentalists

Film Review: Peeping Tom [dir. Michael Powell; 1960]

21st century cinema goers aren’t especially shocked by films which depict serial killers venturing into the seedier realms of society to look for their victims. We tend not to be put off by excessive violence. We don’t mind the odd bit of gore or exploitation. That’s why Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom now makes such fascinating viewing. Today’s audiences would probably see it as an intelligent, sharply … Continue reading Film Review: Peeping Tom [dir. Michael Powell; 1960]

Considered Less Important

So we’ve ended up with a coalition. Well, I don’t think that’s such an awful result. I’ve made a few snide remarks about the ‘Nick n Dave’ show on Twitter, but the truth is that I don’t see why joint governments are necessarily ineffectual. I may not agree with many fundamental Tory philosophies (such as the view that we’re not European) but if we must have … Continue reading Considered Less Important