Saturday, May 31, 2008

Rules of cinema #4

Nobody can work out how it is that Martin Lawrence has ever made more than two films.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Rules of cinema #3

No matter how often you refresh the Odeon's listings page, there's still only going to be a load of crap on.
Today we have:
Iron Man - no thanks.
What Happens In Vegas - shudder at the thought and see rule #1 re Ashton Kutcher.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall - make it stop.
Nim's Island - Jodie Foster ain't funny.
Speed Racer - the lead character's first name is Speed. And his surname is Racer.
Grindhouse - maybe.
Indiana Jones and the thingy of the wotsit - unnecessary.
Sex And The City - you're kidding, right?
The Spiderwick Chronicles - seen the trailer. All I need to know.

Pub then?


I have been a bit mean to Hull on here in the past, but a couple of bank holidays ago, I and my better half went for a visit. No it's not a normal thing to do, but there was something approaching a point to it, namely the fish walk. Yes, you read right. The fish walk. All over the old town - the bit that is actually quite nice - there are fish. Some are chiselled out of the paving, some are plinth type things, some are metal shapes sunk into the floor, such as these eels.

And when you've completed the walk, you get a certificate! I think this is the first certificate I've received since I managed, for one time only, to swim 25 metres without requiring assistance.

Having completed the fish walk, we set about the ale trail. Well, we sort of combined the two, being the freeform jazzists we are, stopping off at a variety of watering holes along the route. One bar that wasn't on the aforementioned trail was one of these horrid places like Flares only not Flares; Retro it was. How retro is Retro, I thought to myself. Do they close between 3 and 7 and turf you out at half ten? Can you get a Watney's Red Barrel or a Double Diamond? If not, then retro it ain't. And then we were in a pub later on that did turf out at 3pm. Bizarre.
Among the usual godforsaken dross you can find in any town or city across the country, there are some cracking wee pubs in the city like the White Hart, an Edwardian listed building with a massive rosewood bar and all the original fittings - Doulton's, apparently.

It's a bit off the beaten track, but it's a good venue with, for Hull, a decent range. That's the main problem in the city: not many places offer you anything above standard fayre, beer-wise. Stella's about as exotic as it gets in most places.
Other places rely on their claims to fame for notoriety. The George Hotel on The Land Of Green Ginger is onesuch. It's a real ale place and they do a lovely Yorkshire Terrier - a nutty, oaky brew with a rich head and a lovely bitter finish - it's all very well appointed inside. But the real attraction is outside where you can see England's smallest window.

Wow! All of which begs the question where Britain's smallest window is.
So that's Hull. Don't judge it by Bransholme alone. Sure it's not a pretty place, but if you scratch the surface, it ain't all bad. The old town is quite lovely.

Accentuate the positive

I've never been a fan of negative campaigning, which is why Labour's entirely predictable bye-election defeat in Crewe and Nantwich doesn't disappoint me greatly - not as greatly as it probably ought to anyway. They went negative, always a sign of a party in trouble, focusing on the background of the Tory candidate and making a shameful play on immigration rather than anything positive, and paid the price. Having said that, what positives are there for Labour to concern themselves with right now? By contrast, the Conservatives didn't really have to do anything. They're reaping the rewards of a government in serious strife and the malaise could quite easily continue until the next general election when the Conservatives may, again, have to do nothing more than smile sweetly and point out that they're not Labour.
Part of me thinks a term of Conservative rule might not be a bad thing, but it passes after a moment. At some point they'll have to actually put a policy on the table and that's where it will hopefully go wrong for them.

Similarly, Hillary Clinton's campaign for the Democratic nomination is a negative affair. Resorting to the politics of fear and, again, a shameful play of the race card, it's probably time for the party elders to put her out of my misery.

Rules of cinema #2 - addendum

Another film completely unnecessarily remade was The Wicker Man. Moreover, the remake featured Nicolas Cage, so I refer you to rule #1 as well.
It ain't big and it ain't clever remaking The Wicker Man. However it is both big and clever to use your nephew's (aged 4) building blocks to build a wicker man and put a policeman inside. Hence:

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Dear bloke in the current Halifax ad

No, not that Howard feller. The wee lad that sings the latest one. "Woke up this morning feeling fine" did you? Until you caught a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and a little piece of you died inside and you began to sob uncontrollably, I'd wager.
Moreover, there have been many things that have blown people's mind. The horror of war, single-minded pursuit of the unobtainable, that kind of thing. Not a current account though.

Now turn it in.


Rules of cinema #2

Some films do not need remaking; especially, though not exclusively, Japanese horror flicks. Particular horrors include Get Carter, The Italian Job, 36, Guess Who's Coming To Dinner (though see Rule of cinema #1 for other reasons why, giving particular reference to Ashton Kutcher). There are many more of course. I'd even say that The Departed was completely unnecessary given the brilliance of Infernal Affairs.
Read a subtitle and shun these cheap reproductions.

Monday, May 19, 2008

21st century proverbs

Shaved head and beard;
look a bit weird.

Saturday, May 03, 2008


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