Blogs

Putin, Russia and the West BBC 2. [Endgame]

This is history in the making and it tells us that history is repetition. It began with Putin, the strong man confronting the oligarchs, who had ransacked Russia for personal gain and reaped the rewards of countless billions, trillions and effective control of the state. Putin the exKGB man wanted a different kind of democracy. He wanted the state to be in control. It was a return to what he knew. Next up was Chechnya, part of a greater Russia...

Wild Abandon by Joe Dunthorne - a review

Joe is 'spack' on ABCtales and his first novel 'Submarine' has met with huge success, including being made into an excellent film. His second novel 'Wild Abandon' is now out and it's set in a commune. My friend, Red Tina, was one of the founders of a well known commune and so I thought it apposite for her to review the book. Here are her thoughts: Wild Abandon is a bit of a romp about mid-life crisis and family breakdown. The story has added...

El Classico 2

El Classico 2 – Real Madrid 2. Should have won. Could have won. Didn’t win. It’s the worst feeling in the world. I was watching bits of the Liverpool vs Man City game. I missed the first thirty seconds. That was long enough for Higuain to miss a chance. Ronaldo missed. The ball comes into the box, a header missed from three yards, hits the Barca keeper Valdes bounces out and hit another Real player. Real hits the framework of the post and bar...

Storyville-Survival: Lust for Life.

What if a thirty-year old documentary film maker gets thyroid cancer? What does she do? She makes a documentary of her dying. Shitty ending, of course, either way. I couldn’t help putting my own lines into her camera to camera exchanges. When she was first diagnosed and a bit bored and frustrated she decided to go on holiday with her friend. Her friend said, of course, I don’t go on holiday with dead people and hung up. But maybe she didn’t. Cut...

Birdsong and 127 Hours

Birdsong an adaptation of Faulkes’ novel by Abi Morgan and 127 hours is an adaptation of Erin Ralston’s last hours by Danny Boyle. They don’t seem initially to have a lot in common. And superficially that is true, but I don’t tend to deal in the profound and am a bit short sighted so although eighty years separated the two heroes they did seem to have the same girlfriend. Something should be done about these old dames turning up decades later as...

Putin Russia and the West bbc 2

Putin, Russia and the West BBC 2. This is a four- part documentary by Norma Percy and it is one of the kind of things that BBC does so well despite having only one quarter of the budget of Sky. And it is difficult to see a Murdoch empire despite the growing money difference having the clout to get big hitters such as Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice and their Russian counterparts talking about the relationship between Putin’s Russia and the West...

tallhotblond channel 4

tallhotblond is a textspeak story about life and love and murder and redemption, or it is not. It is set in a world before Facebook when MySpace was the monster roaming the internet eating everybody’s lives. Tallhotblond is a star in this world living life online and hooks up with the aptly named marinesniper, 47- year- old married man Thomas Montgomery, an ex-marine and proud of it who lives in a small town near Virginnia, where only virgins...

Horizon: Playing God

Horizon, ‘Playing with God’ biology, genetics, synthetic biology. These are all terms we are vaguely familiar with. Biology and genetics take the DNA as building blocks for cells and make proteins that make tissues and muscles and bones that work together into complex systems such as humans. Man has always tinkered with this system. Farmyard animals are bigger, stronger, able to produce more milk, more beef, more wool by selective breeding. The...

The Reader (2008)

‘The Reader’ (2008) directed by Stephen Daldry, produced by Anthony Mingella and Sydney Pollack, screenwriting by David Hare, based on a book by Bernhard Schlink. I’m telling you all these boring facts so that you know that this screams out QUALITY film even before the first scene. The most important fact, of course, is the eponymous reader Ralph Fiennes, looks like a German. He’s always looked like a German, even when he’s not knocking about...

Sometimes The World Is Too Beautiful

That's the title of the new book of poetry by ABCtales member Swep Lovitt - known on here as bosch. Swep has longed to publish this book for a while and now his time has come. The poems in the slim volume take us on a personal journey through the break-up of his marriage and divorce. It's not bitter but it is sad. The poems have been carefully honed. The work on them shows through time after time. You realise that every word has been considered...

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