Blogs

My Secret Phone Sex Channel 4 and Blindsight BBC 4

My Secret Phone Sex. Sex sells as we all know and Channel 4 knows in particular. So a documentary about sex sells very well. So we had old hand Jenny, if you’ll pardon the pun, first time Rosa, and upper class and quite pretty sex worker thingmy, whose name I can’t remember. But names don’t matter. It’s all pseudonyms and different voices. Rather like writing. Blindsight, BBC 4. Six blind Tibetans tackle Everest. There were also two blind guides...

Knuckle-Bare Fist Fighting BBC 4

Knuckle-bare fist fighters BBC 4. I like Storyville and this is a far more interesting take than something like My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding. But it’s difficult to make a comparison with something you’ve seen and something you’ve not seen, which is the case in the latter, so I’ll restrict my remarks to the former. The feud between two clans of travelling families, the Quinn Mc Donagh and Joyce’s was filmed over 12 years, but goes back to an incident...

Inglourious Bastards

Inglourious Bastards (2009) by Quentin Tarintino is a simple story of how the Second World War was won by Brad Pitt and co. Brad played one of the Bastards a group of renegade soldiers, of Jewish origin, who delighted in killing Nazis and, in particular, SS Nazis. The rest of it is all schmuck. Brad guarantees that the picture will make some money and Tarintino does his Woody Allen and makes films that please himself (cf Kill Bill) and another...

The Singing Detective

Dennis Potter’s The Singing Detective, directed by Jon Amiel and starring Michael Gambon as the Singing Detective. Well, not as the Singing Detective, because he is a fictional product of Philip Marlowe’s deluded brain. He is an author lying in a hospital bed suffering from arthritic psoriasis. His body is one big scab. His books come alive in his head and onscreen. Patients break into popular song and dance numbers and Michael Gambon as Philip...

My Dog Tulip BBC 4

My Dog Tulip BBC4 by J.R. Ackerly, screenplay by Paul Ferlinger. This is an autobiography of a man and his dog, or a dog and his man. It’s a love story. They love each other. J.R. Ackerly is a fusty middle aged man who lives alone. His life is transformed when Tulip arrives. It’s his dog and no other. When his sister tries to woo Tulip with doggy snacks and tricks it doesn’t work. No vet can treat Tulip because he is so love sick he won’t allow...

Catholics BBC 4

I really couldn’t miss this. It would be like missing mass, only much worse, because this is BBC 4 and they put this programme on for me. I recognise the iconography, the statues, the Virgin Marys, the pictures of Bernadette Souberous ( not sure if that’s how you spell her name). I think there was also a picture of …oh, I can’t remember his name…A Man for all Seasons. There were some interesting facts. It costs £20K a year to educate these men...

Lourdes (2009)

Lourdes 2009 directed by Jessica Hausner, shown on BBC 4. Sylivie Tsdud plays Christine a pilgrim to Lourdes. We do not know what is wrong with her, but she is shown being spoon fed and helped into bed by a young girl. Christine is effectively a head on a stick. She looks on as the young girls flirt with their male counterparts and, in particular, a handsome young man, Kuno, whom they all fancy. It is Christine that first speaks to him. She...

Prawn Sandwich/Black Shoes Competition Results

Congratulations (and £100 prizes) go to Judygee and Kilb50 and the runners up (with £25 prizes) are Alison McManus and albamac. There's lots of commendations and an explanation of how I arrived at my decision here: http://www.abctales.com/magazine/talecatching

Jo Brand on Kissing BBC 4

Jo Brand is a comedienne. She is quite funny. She is not someone you would want to kiss. I don’t want to get familiar with her, but Jo looks a bit like a truck driver with lipstick. Perhaps that was the idea of the programme. An hour devoted to laughing at kissing and Jo. An hour is quite a long time, so how did me and Jo fill it? Well, we found out that Jo doesn’t like that kind of kissing, you know, the one that goes on in public, people...

Bullets, Boots and Bandages BBC 4

Bullets, Boots and Bandages BBC 4, produced and directed by Jeff Wilkinson, presented by historian Saul David. This is drama in the detail. Why did British Forces beat the French army at Blenheim? Simple technology and attention to detail. A cart with springs could pull a heavier load quicker, because it had springs, didn’t churn up the roads, and allowed that password of modern armies: mobility. The Brits could travel 12 miles a day. The French...

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