gibberish


Sex sells

US style.  Brilliant new ad.  Incredible strategy.  For Old Spice.

and this is how they made it.  Worth watching.



Kick ass. By name and by nature.

DO. NOT. MESS. OK?

Kick Ass starts from a promising point of view.

What if anyone could take to the streets and exact protection or retribution in the role commonly associated with superheroes?

Hmmm.  Nice.

What if most of these were kids?

Hmmm nicer.

What if some of them were ultra-tooled-up-mafia-hunting-vigilantes?

Hmmm.  Excellent.

That’s what you get with Kick Ass.  It’s a Smorgasbrod of superheroes from Dark Knight-esque Batman (in 11 year old girl’s clothes humming along to a Tarantino soundtrack) to a young Steve Martin in The Jerk-like loser role.

And that’s what makes this film ROCK.  It really does.  Its bad language is at times shriek out loud funny.  “Is that all you C**** have got?” yells 11 year old Hit Girl as she pumps lead into more brains than an episode of University Challenge.

“Take that you Mother F******.” When she gets angry.

Hit Girl (Chloe Moretz) is the movie-stealing find of the decade.  She is gobsmackingly in your face as she DESTROYS hundreds of armed thugs (think O-Ren Ishii in Kill Bill, or even better her teenage sidekick Gogo Yubari).

DO. NOT. MESS. OK?

It’s completely out of order, off the scale, outrageous and freakin’ hilarious.

Nicolas Cage is great as a scheming and revenging madman.  The scene where he practices firing pump action bullets into Hit Girl’s chest is unique and remarkable.

This is a great movie.  It sags a touch in the second act but opens and closes like a wounded rhino.

See.

At all costs.



My latest video
March 28, 2010, 2:16 pm
Filed under: Arts, photography, Scotland | Tags: , , ,

A selection of my favourite shots set to Samuel Barbour’s Adagio for Strings. (Thanks Chris.)



Alice In wonderland
March 27, 2010, 11:13 pm
Filed under: Arts, humour, movies | Tags: , , , ,

First off.  Go see the 2D version.  The 3D adds nothing.

Tim Burton is my favourite unpredictable director.  Sweeney Todd and The Nightmare Before Christmas are both works of genius, but most of the rest have deep flaws.  Alice in Wonderland is nearer the former than the latter (although my fellow viewers erred towards the latter).

Tim has thrown the kitchen sink at this one.  The effects (putting aside the 3D) are at times jaw dropping and some of his little vignettes are a delight (the Red Queen’s guilty frogs in particular).  And Mrs Burton, Helena Bonham Carter, can surely never have been better in a completely show-stealing role.  She is hilarious.

But it’s too long and it’s overloaded with ideas to the point that it begins to wash over you.

I like Johnny Depp in this, but my wife didn’t.  He’s mad.  But then, he plays a mad hatter.

7/10.



Every One by The Royal Lyceum Theatre Company

So much that excites in theatre and cinema is ultimately down to the writing and Mark Thomson has mounted (and brilliantly directed) a show that is, in parts, written with such skill and sophistication, and humour, that it takes the breath away.  However, at others it seems to go AWOL.

The first act of this new play, written by Jo Clifford, is very convincing, moving and utterly absorbing.  It is staged imaginatively and it’s all going in the right direction.  In act 2, however, the show seems to hit choppy creative waters as it steps up its ambition.  But it left me, and my wife, confused.

It’s about death.  Full frontal, no holds barred death.  The great universal.  If we all die let’s not pussyfoot about the issue, let’s just play it straight and that’s exactly how Clifford tackles the subject.

A 50 year old wife and mother suffers a massive stroke and dies soon thereafter.  How it affects her nearest and dearest is one aspect of the show but the greater one (and a less often visited side of the equation) is how it affects the cadaver.  And that makes for great theatre in act one as we build the back story (often hilariously) and reach the momento mori.

The cast is led by the peerless and stunning Kath Howden and ably supported by her “late” husband Jonathon Hackett and death himself in the guise of Liam Brennan.  But they get most of the great lines and all of the power plays.  Less satisfactory for me were the parts for the son and daughter and trickiest of all is the role in the play of the family matriarch, Howden’s mother, who is suffering from senility.  Her part takes us down the most confusing plot alleyways and do not, in my view, always help the narrative.  What I expected was to see Act 2 focus more on grief, instead it becomes more and more obtuse, before coming together in a satisfying climax.

The staging is magnificent.  Philip Pinsky, yet again, pops in with musical magic. ( The point of death being captured in a single electrifying piano chord; once in each act.) And the whole is, overall, very satisfying.  I just wish act 2 had a bit more narrative conviction and storytelling.

Should you go?  You bet.



gareth’s bairn
March 26, 2010, 9:27 am
Filed under: Uncategorized



IMG_2447

Originally uploaded by Gareth Howells.

cracking



this is my gang
March 22, 2010, 9:22 pm
Filed under: humour, life, photography, Scotland, theatre, Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

this is my gang

Kieran Wilson rules the roost at FCT. You wouldn’t want to mess.