War of the worlds film

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Going from something I love, to something I hate.

I hate this film, starring Tom Cruise. I admit its very good. But it’s so bleak. It’s a horror road movie, everyone running, panicking, and getting killed.

When I first watched it years ago I was mesmerised by the special effects. But now, it’s on during a pandemic, and I can see how people react to a tiny virus. How would they react to something larger and malevolent.

I don’t want to give too many details as people may not have watched it. But I guess I’ve pretty much explained what happens… Guy meets monster, guy runs away from monster, monster finds guy…. Guy escapes….

There was a version on BBC TV a few months ago. It was more directly based on the original book by H. G. Wells. Set in Victorian times, it was still chilling.

So I really want cheerful films, but hubby vetoed me.

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I’ve been caracatured !

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Me as Miss Marple!

Imagine my delight when I saw this yesterday. My lovely friend Stephen Talbot (his copyright ©) has been doing a series of caracatures and this is the one he did if me, in the guise of Miss Marple played by Margaret Rutherford.

If anyone hasn’t heard of the author, she was Agatha Christie. She wrote many detective books, with sleuths like Miss Jane Marple, and Hercule Poirot.

In addition to the books there were several films, made from the 1950’s onwards. Some of them starred famous actors, like Elizabeth Taylor.

There have also been television adaptations, of which my favourite was Joan Hickson as Miss Marple.

Recently the BBC have done a few adaptation of Christie mysteries. But the most recent strayed a long way from the book it was based on. I’ve forgotten what it was called… I think they tried to over simplify the story,, so removed some of the characters.

I would love to see “murder at the gallop” again, its an old film, with wonderful music. Lots of fun.

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Film : Humanus

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Just got back from seeing a film we were in as extras. It was actually shown at a proper cinema which was great. The cast, writers, singers and crew are members of Inter theatre a community theatre company. This is a group of disabled actors who have come together to make a feature film. Featuring Nello (Neil Baldwin) who was portrayed by Toby Jones in Marvellous, a film about his life. It was funny, included a tragic romance, singing, zombies the waiting room for heaven and hell and horrific murders. Directed by Steve Mitchell, it is ground breaking because it stars and includes many people who are disabled but who show just how they can be involved in things like this. It may have a premiere in London (fingers crossed) and also may get put on one of the streaming networks.

Wish it luck x.

Wrap party

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I don’t know what I wanted to look like, but I think it went with the horror film theme for the film Humanus.

I enjoyed it, it was quirky, with lots of ideas. You can  tell its made by an amateur group, but it’s charming. Set in a world where people go to a waiting room when they die, and something is causing headless corpses. It was fun to be in ans to see. It might even get a release on TV…

Extras

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For a laugh earlier in the year me and my hubby agreed to be extras in a local film. We didn’t do much except go into a building for a seance and then come out and drive away. I don’t even know if we will still be in it, we might be on the cutting room floor! But at least we get to see the premiere! I’ve got to go and get some face paint as it’s fancy dress. I’m glad, I don’t want to be recognised. Hopefully it will be a bit if fun…. And the TV people are coming. I might go and hide in a corner!

What are you watching?

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I’m trying to watch (and understand) a 1957 film by Ingmar Bergmann called ‘The Seventh Seal’.

It’s in Swedish with English subtitles. The language sounds complex and ancient. It’s in black and white. A Knight comes back from the crusades and finds plague. Then he plays chess with Death and Death gives him time to get his life in order. Well that’s what it appears to be about but I’m not sure. What I might do is look it up on Google, but that seems wrong. I shall continue to watch it. Its beautifully photographed and very interesting and very strange.

Spode patterns

I’m working towards the exhibition at Spode and I’ve been experimenting with the photos I took a few days ago. Using the Layout app on my phone.

The thing is, I know I can’t reproduce these as paintings, so it’s good to use photographs to experiment with the images I took. There was a film by Andrei Tarkovsky I saw years ago. I think it was called Stalker, the industrial archeology of Spode reminds me of that. Almost post apocalyptic….

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Watching 2001 a Space Odyssey.

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I haven’t seen 2001 for about 10 years but it hasn’t lost its magic. If you have never seen it then it’s worth having a look. It’s a classic science fiction film set in 2001. It was made in the 1960s but it has quite good predictions of how things would work in the future.

It starts at the dawn of man and charts what happens when a enigmatic black obilisk appears on Earth. The film then fasts forward to a future where humans have made a discovery on the moon and follows an expedition to Jupiter.

I did read the original book by Arthur C Clarke and the following sequels. I think in the original story they travel to Saturn, but the destination was changed in the film and the subsequent books.

I won’t post any spoilers about what happens. But it is very good, although modern audiences might find it a bit slow. The one thing I do like is that the space sequences are silent except for music in the first sequence. Sound cannot propagate in a vacuum as there are no molecules to transmit it. Hence although you would hear rockets in earth’s atmosphere you wouldn’t in outer space.

The director was Stanley Kubrick who also directed A clockwork orange and other classic films. I think they are showing it because its the anniversary of Kubruck death.

The start of the film shows the moon in silhouette with Earth and then the sun curving beyond. That’s what I’ve tried to draw here.

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Film festival

We went to the first day of a three day film festival tonight.

After being entertained by a steel band and having food and drink laid on we watched visionary filmmaker Spike Lee’s film Blackkklansman. Starring John David Washington as the first African-American detective in Colorado Springs. 

An American movie set in the 1970s about a black American police man, Ron Stallworth who infiltrated the KKK, the American racist organisation. The film is based on his true story. He rang up after reading an advert by them and was surprised to be invited to join them. By working with his white partner he managed to be accepted by them. A white colleague took his place when he was due to meet them face to face.

As the film moves on I started to understand why there was civil unrest in the 1970’s and began to realise that things have not changed that much even now.

Watching the last few minutes literally struck home at how things are still bad for the black community. I’m not a film critic, but I think it was worth watching.

Old film projector.

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I was looking through my old photos and came across this from about a year ago. This is a film projector that was used for a local cinema. I have no idea what all the bits are for. But it’s interesting to see what used to be used before digital came in. My partner once did a training course to learn how to project films. There is usually a splodge marked in one corner of the film so you know when the next piece of film  (reel) is due to start. Apparently some films could have up to eight reels. I don’t know enough to describe it properly. But these machines are beautiful, so well made, which allowed classic films to be shown to audiences. There is a national film and cinematography museum in Bradford, England, which is well worth a visit. I think it still has an IMAX cinema which shows twice the normal sized film. I think it’s 70 millimetres instead of 35 and the film has to be run on its side…. I might visit again soon.