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Showing posts from June, 2012

The Wonderful World of Wes Anderson

Jodhpur, India.  A businessman sits nervously in the back of a speeding taxi.  Its driver, himself the very picture of composure, rattles headlong through the dusty streets as if giving chase. With cool shades and a straight face, he weaves through the chaos, dodging motorbikes, auto rickshaws and…uh…livestock.  It’s every man (and beast) for himself.

Tossing out the rulebook (if ever it existed), he overtakes, undertakes, slips and shimmies past certain death as casually as if it were all a video game.  But this is India, and Indian rules apply.  Meanwhile, the white-knuckled businessman lessens his grip to check his watch, mutters something under his breath, gestures to a passing threat outside.
He wants to protest, but he bites his lip for the train he has to catch.  The worry is etched on his face – missing it is not an option.  Time is such that a fatal accident is the lesser evil.  His suitcases are on either side of him. The driver makes an emergency stop at the destination. The…

My First Film Review: Lost in Translation (27 November 2004)

I began writing regularly during my second year of Sixth Form.  By today's standards, 17¾ is quite a late age to start.  With a blossoming blog culture, anyone who has an interest nowadays invariably writes about it.  I know friends from my year at school who had kept online diaries right from their early teens, but these tended to be girls who started with Dear Diary, wrote in the sort of garish pink you had to highlight in order to read and who had no designs on a wide readership.  And while some of us had just discovered Bebo, which had been the early triangle ding of the social networking boom of Facebook and Twitter that would soon follow, we didn't know the capabilities of the Internet as we do now.  Back then, it was enough to be popular within your small clique.  But suddenly, popularity wasn't enough; people wanted to be famous.  
Going back a bit further, I guess it was MSN Messenger that first got me into writing.  Everyone strives for life's level playing fi…

Olympic Torch Relay, Day 6: Gloucester

For some, the Olympic Torch Relay doesn't mean a thing. For others, it’s a flag-waving warm up of patriotism for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee - enjoyable enough, but little more than an excuse to buy the Union Jack bunting a few weeks early. I fit into a third category, as I hope the majority of this nation resides: I am fiercely proud of all things London 2012. The Torch Relay is a truly remarkable Olympic tradition that can be embraced by all corners of the United Kingdom. Regretfully, I lacked the foresight to book the morning off work when the flame passed through Gloucester last Thursday. It’s undoubtedly a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle, and though I missed it, I’m glad that thousands of my county’s compatriots did not.

Pre-empting the bitter taste of hindsight, I rode into Gloucester the day before to get a sense of the mounting anticipation.  Aside from the signs in the pictures (left, below), any indication of preparations were few and far between.  The ones I saw were s…