I've had some time to kill this week, what with the abortive holiday attempts. Downtime such as this would usually be filled with longer dog walks and day trips, but the rain here has been relentless.
Visits to the cinema are also a favourite as the weekday matinees are the only trips I can bear these days, as the chattering popcorn scoffers (that's you lot) aren't there to distract me. However the only film I really wanted to see, David Fincher's Zodiac, has already moved on.
The constant rain has kept me close to home then. Digging around the house for movies I've picked up over the years but never watched. The first of these was The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp a rather lovely Powell and Pressburger offering from a box set I bought in sale a year or so back and then ignored. I'm really not bright enough to give insightful film critique, but I especially enjoyed the performance of Anton Walbrook as Theo Kretschmar-Schuldorff, and his moving speech on why he fled Nazi Germany. I'm looking forward to ploughing through the rest of DVD's.
Next up has been Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous which I thoroughly enjoyed. Good performance by Billy Crudup as the shallow lead singer Russell Hammond, though he didn't look convincing on stage. (oooh such insight VS). Highly recommended though.
Wes Craven's Cursed was generic and dull. He's had a patchy old career. I liked Scream and the People Under the Stairs. Not so Keen on Vampire in Brooklyn and Cursed.
Lastly I watched Jim Jarmush's Night on Earth, which went right over my head, and the 1984 production of Nineteen Eighty Four which was grim. Not a patch on Brazil. I dunno, these dystopian comedies..
I'm always on the lookout form obscure or old film recommendations. So feel free to throw any favourites of your own in.
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The pleasure of reading has to large extent eluded me over recent years. I used to be a voracious reader, often staying up until the early hours, fag in gob or hand, lost in some volume or other. I gave up smoking six or seven years back and compulsive reading seemed to go with it. I haven't stopped completely enjoying books, it just takes me forever to finish them. Finding, as I do, other more meaningless ways to fill my time. The last few nights I have switched off the computers and DVD players and tried to make some headway into The Secret Life of Houdini by Kalush and Sloman. I've really got into it..so mid-year resolution- 'Off with the screens and out with the books.'
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I've managed to get hold of a copy of The New Yorker which was part of an earlier post about the struggle to find decent magazines. If you recall, this comes highly recommended by Andrew Collins, due to the quality of writing and intelligence of the arts section. I rather feel it will be wasted on me, but let's give it a go. The first article I read was about new US TV show John From Cincinnati (which The New Yorker didn't much care for and I rather liked), and the quality of the last episode of the Soprano's and the mischievous (I thought) and brilliant last five minutes (TNY agreed. Hurrah!).
I've also discovered Wired, a magazine about technology and it's effects. I'm seriously thinking about subscribing.