Monday, February 16, 2015
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
This time I've been listening a lot to Leonard Cohen's beautiful new album, Popular Problems. To my ears a true classic and the best album of the year so far by a country mile.
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Don’t get me wrong, I love people who can wear loud clothes and get away with it. I’m just not one of them. I remember I’d been bought a pair of sandals and they were so spanking new, the sole was snow white and, to me, they looked too much like new sandals, so I had my dad put brown boot polish on the white edges to the soles, just so they'd be ‘quieter,’ not so loud and would allow me to sink into the background. I was about six or seven at the time and I often wonder why I would think that way. I mean I haven’t changed a bit really. As an adult I’ve bought clothes and left them in my wardrobe, sometimes even for a couple of years, just so they would age and I’d feel more comfortable wearing them. I recall going to the Royal Albert Hall in London, my favourite venue in the world, for a concert and I remember John Peel was the compere and he had a buckskin, fringed-jacket - as favoured by Native Americans in the movies - draped over his arm. He just wanted to show it to us, the audience. He explained that he hadn’t plucked up the courage to start to wear it, “just yet.” I seem to remember that he brought the said jacket to several concerts, every time unworn, he clearly just wanted us to see that he was still trying to pluck up courage to wear it. So it was comforting to know I wasn't alone.
Following my initial few months with the bobble hat my mum knit for me, I would have gone hatless for a good few years. Then in my early teenage years I would have sheltered under the hood of my trusted, and treasured, duffle-coat. It wouldn’t have been as warm as a hat or a cap – it was a bit of a wind trap really and only helped to compound the bluing of the ears.
And now the bit before I go. After finishing work on The Lonesome Heart Is Angry I've been ODing on DVDs mainly the first 4 series of Parenthood - just incredible. Also watched Michael Connelly's Bosch, with Titus Welliver perfect as Harry Bosch. The pilot was 10 outta 10 and the amazing news is it's just been commissioned for a full series! There is a justice in the world after all.
Monday, February 17, 2014
Why do we get upset when we hear that Robert Redford is quoted as saying that the reason he didn’t even get nominated for what just might be his career best performance as an actor in All Is Lost, was quite simply due to the lack of cinema screening his film?
How come we get upset when Tom Hanks didn’t get nominated for Best Actor for his performance in Captain Philips because pundits speculate that the Oscar committee don’t want him to win a 3rd Oscar?
How can 6000 odd people (the odd refers to the ‘6000’ and not to, ‘people.’) pick the best movie of the year when they’re clearly biased? Is the reality that it is truly impossible to select the best movie of the year?
Surely audiences, with their feet, reflect a better choice for a potential movie of the year.
If this is the case should the category not be changed from best picture to most popular picture of the year?
Why doesn’t Stephen Fry, flawless at the Baftas, get to compere, the Oscars?
Why do the Sags, Golden Globes, Writers Guild and Directors Guild insist on having different lists for their award ceremonies if they are truly seeking the best performances of the year?
Now that there are so many award ceremonies are we due an award ceremony to nominate and pick the best award ceremony?
Is it a coincidence that the word ceremony ends in mon(e)y?
The answer to all of the above is: I don’t know.
We all have an opinion and it’s important to have an opinion and it might even me more important that we have different opinions. But in this case does it really matter, because it’s all part of this business we call show business.
It’s award season in movie capital of the USA and so all the film companies release their main contenders just prior to this time of the year intent in trying to ensure Harvey Weinstein doesn’t win a clutch of the awards this year again.
I can also tell you that at the exact same time of the year the weather (not to mention the breakfasts) are much better in Santa Monica than they are in either Ramelton or Camden Town so that where Catherine and I go to soak up a bit of the lack of the cold and a lot of the celluloid entertainment.
For what it worth this year this (in my opinion) is the best of the batch movies and (according to my personal opinion) I’ve listed them in the order I’d like to see them for a 2nd time.
All Is Lost
The Invisible Woman
The Book Thief
August: Ostage County
The Armstrong Lie
Who would I like to see win the Oscars?
Director: Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity)
Screenplay: Spike Jonze (Her)
Actor: Bruce Dern
Support Actor: Bradley Cooper
Actress: Sandra Bullock
Support Actress: Jennifer Lawrence
Animated Movie: Frozen
Original Score: Thomas Newman (Saving Mr Banks)
This leads me to: Hints to cinema chains (including ones in the UK) on how to make more money.
a) Save your budget on self-adverts. We don’t want or need to see them. They’re boring - especially if you go to the cinema a lot - totally unnecessary and a complete waste of money.
b) Spend more money locally marketing your movies. It’s very important you make sure you let people know where the movie is on and the times. This really helps a lot. And do it on the street as well as on the web.
c) Have smaller bags of chocolates/sweets/popcorn on sale at your concessions stand in the long run you’ll sell a lot more. d) Always ensure you have Ben and Gerry’s Chunky Monkey on sale.
e) (exclusively for the UK) drop the adverts you’ll be able to fit in more screenings and do enjoy better box office returns.
f) Try and pause, even just for an extra 10 seconds the credit page at the end of each trailer so we can see who’s involved.
So that’s it for now.
Sorry for the delay between the blogs this time but I’ve been busy proof reading the new novel – THE LONESOME HEART IS ANGRY (Published May 1st) and writing the third Starrett mystery HELLO DARKNESS MY OLD FIEND.
More about both next time.
Friday, May 31, 2013
Eric Clapton @ The Royal Albert Hall - on something like his 180th appearance on this particular stage he's so comfortable it felt like we were all in his living room enjoying a beautiful concert.
Monday, February 4, 2013