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Religious films

I was searching around for a topic for my film list and was greatly aided by Front Row, the Radio 4 arts programme, which considered this genre. It put the theme in historical context with the two celebrated versions of the Ten Commandments by Cecil B De Mille. It continued to explore sun & [...]

April 19, 2014 // 0 Comments

Fall of the Roman Empire

Yesterday I had to babysit for the grandchildren. They are good kids, by which I mean as long as they can play AngryBirds they leave me alone. I was going to work on some articles but saw that the Samuel Bronstein sword and sandal epic Fall of the Roman  Empire was on the television. The critics [...]

April 17, 2014 // 0 Comments

Fingers crossed …

Previews and advance notices has begun appearing for Tommy Cooper: Not Like This Like That, a two-hour drama based upon the life of the comedian, written by Simon Nye and starring David Threlfall as Cooper, plus Amanda Redman and Helen McCrory, which will be transmitted on ITV at 9.00pm on Bank [...]

April 17, 2014 // 0 Comments

The Crooked Maid by Dan Vyleta

Dan Vyleta has acquired quite a reputation, which he has done much to foster by comparing his latest novel to Dostoevsky and Dickens. I was initially excited by the thought of a novel set in Vienna in 1948. I have never visited Vienna but I feel I know it well. Weaned on Graham Greene’s The [...]

April 12, 2014 // 0 Comments

Les Valseuses 1974

In the Seventies our set of Jewish adolescents went to see this daring movie with its explicit scenes of sex and nudity. One of our group, being derided as prim  although all of us were inexperienced, did not like the film and after she left she came in for some patronising criticism. Forty years [...]

April 11, 2014 // 0 Comments

L’Enfer (Hell) 1995

Last year I compiled a list of films featuring the mentally disturbed. It did not feature L’Enfer but it should have. The director is Claude Chabrol, the French Hitchcock. Like Hitchcock he is master of filming technique, Hitchcock learning his in the German new realist school of Fritz Lang [...]

April 8, 2014 // 0 Comments

Jeune et Jolie

Francois Ozon is amongst the most celebrated of French directors and he is on form with Jeune et Jolie. The film, set over four seasons, depicts Isobelle (Marine  Vatch ),  a 17 year old who loses her  virgintiy in the summer on holiday, becomes a prostitute in autumn, is revealed as such in [...]

April 3, 2014 // 0 Comments

Yves Saint Laurent

The French Cinema has, over the past few years, produced some interesting biopics of their celebrated achievers: Piaf, Chanel and now Yves Saint Laurent. Although these are warts et tous they reflect a national pride which we do not  often see in British cinema Yves Saint Laurent was played by [...]

April 1, 2014 // 0 Comments

Bush matters – a female perspective

Yesterday it was announced that Kate Bush’s first tour in thirty-five years later this summer – now amounting to 22 dates – had sold out in fifteen minutes. Naturally, despite my reservations about the entire project, I had my secretary go online ten minutes before the tickets went on sale [...]

March 29, 2014 // 0 Comments

Of their time – maybe

Let me be frank. Generally-speaking, when it comes to the issue of ‘mature’ pop musicians continuing to make music and seeking to put it out in public, I’m a sceptic. Please don’t get me wrong – I’m denying neither the right of anyone to attempt to do whatever they want, irrespective of [...]

March 28, 2014 // 0 Comments

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