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Keith Waterhouse/ Renaissance Man

I have always been a fan of Keith Waterhouse who passed away aged 81 in 2009. He was a massive talent, a polymath of all forms of writing. He made his name with Willis Hall as a scriptwriter for David Frost forming a collaboration with Ned Sherrin the first producer of  That Was the Week That [...]

January 19, 2018 // 0 Comments

Not nearly as good as the advance media verdicts would have it

Being an admirer of Winston Churchill – for all his faults, regarded by some who should know enough to judge these things as one of the all-time greatest Englishmen – and having listened to the media jungle drums over the past month or two, I had made a decision earlier this week to break the [...]

January 14, 2018 // 0 Comments

Slow Horses/Mick Herron

The espionage novel is always changing form. We have had the public school adventurer like Bulldog Drummond or Richard Hannay, the glamourous agent James Bond, the working class anti-hero Harry Palmer created by Len Deighton and then John Le Carre. Mick Herron is in the Len Deighton/John Le Carre [...]

January 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

And now for something completely different

Last night I watched a recording that I’d ‘organised’ of a BBC television documentary called A Life On Screen about Michael Palin that was first broadcast at some point last weekend. It was both fascinating and entertaining. When Monty Python’s Flying Circus first hit the television [...]

January 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

Three American film classics…and one not so

Like our Rusters journeying to and from the Antipodes I do not enjoy a long haul flight. My way of passing the time is to watch classic movies by genre. Thus on a long haul flight recently I watched 3 American classics. The first two were Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and The Seven Year Itch. Whilst [...]

January 12, 2018 // 0 Comments

New Years Day Concert Vienna

The ‘attend versus watch it on tv’ debate does not apply to the Vienna traditional New Years Day concert as tickets are gold dust, so I watch it every year on tv. This year they added a short film of an attractive young blonde girl on a bicycle touring the Belvedere and Leopold museums [...]

January 1, 2018 // 0 Comments

Roll on January 2nd!

There – still a few days to go before normal service is resumed but I think I’ve just about got through the festive period unscathed. There’s a point at which, when you live alone and – if you are left to your own devices – the whole of your existence becomes a matter of glorious routine [...]

December 28, 2017 // 0 Comments

The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth/ William Boyd

I always read a William Boyd novel after publication – I am not alone as he is one of our most popular writers. Yet he is hard to classify. You could say he is a humorous author, which he is, but he writes espionage too. One of my favourites Any Human Heart is an account of a rich life, [...]

December 25, 2017 // 0 Comments

It’s that time of year again

As Yuletide beckons – chaotic last minute shopping, endless gridlocks on Britain’s motorways, television screens full of total rubbish except, of course, for Channel Four which seems to be showing a series of classic Carry On films during the daytime (yesterday they showed Carry On [...]

December 23, 2017 // 0 Comments

A tour to Weta Studios

Today we went to Weta (the weta is an ugly New Zealand insect) to see the film studios of New Zealand’s most famous son and native of Wellington, Sir Peter Jackson. These are to be found in a suburb that is a mix of light industrial and residential. It’s not like the imposing Hollywood [...]

December 20, 2017 // 0 Comments

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