Things I have seen of late and wish to blog about:Jack Dee
, live at the Victoria theatre in Halifax. Was hilarious, although on a couple of occasions he skirted a bit too close to the "I'm not racist but" line. He was wearing amazing purple loafers, though. And he made fantastic attempts at inserting local colour into his set along the lines of Mark Steel's In Town
. If I had paid for the tickets I would have considered them good value for money. 8/10Gambit
was silly, but a lot of fun, with the usual caveats about Hollywood movies' stupid approaches to gender politics. It has lots of naked Alan Rickman in it, which, IMHO, is recommendation enough. 7/10Sightseers
is the most original film I have seen in a long long time. If you imagine a feminist take on Natural Born Killers written with the dry and wistful humour of Alan Bennett you're somewhere close to beginning to grasp the feel of this heartwarming romcom about serial killers. I don't want to go too deeply into any of it, because I want you all to go see it. There's a bit of gore, and there's some strong language and really, really inappropriate concepts... but the way they are handled I guarantee you will laugh at all of them. Line of the film was
he's not a person, he's a Daily Mail reader
, but literally every scene has at least one laugh out loud moment. It was an utter joy hearing peals of laughter in the cinema, and it was lovely hearing the other patrons enthusing about the film as they left. It's not a film that needs to be seen on a big screen by way of effects or big visual stuff, but it's a film that makes for a great shared experience. Go and see it. Please.
Also if, like me, you fall in love with the leading lady you might wish to see her other works, which include Horrible Histories
and Garth Marenghi's DarkPlace
. 10/10Strictly Come Dancing
has been a lot of fun this year, principally because of the adorable, modest, brilliant and talented Lisa Riley
, who has absolutely bloomed and become an amazing dancer. She also SO clearly is having the time of her life and getting on like a house on fire with Robbie. I'm not going to give Strictly a mark though because it's the kind of thing you know whether you like it or not.Elementary
I love love love. I love Johnny Lee Miller's characterisation of Holmes (and have just about expunged his Frankenstein's Monster
from my brain), and I love Lucy Liu's sharp yet caring Watson, who has EXACTLY the right balance of intelligence and compassion to be Watson as Watson should be - not the dullard Watson is so often portrayed as, and I REALLY love the way they interact with each other. This is not a brilliant Holmes leading a stupid Watson to enlightenment, it is two people learning different things from each other, exactly as it should be.
Part of the reason it's so good is because the Moffatt series has dibs on the original stories for TV adaptation the makers of Elementary have been forced to be creative, and they have come up with something genuinely great. Better than Sherlock? Hell yes. Sorry Gatiss. 9/10American Horror Story: Asylum
I am having very mixed feelings about. It took me a LONG time to get into series 1 - and I thought about giving up on it
more than once - but once I did I really loved it. Jessica Lange is still awesome, and every episode passes Bechdel without a problem, partly due to the huge cast, but partly because there is actual proper gender balance... but there are some bits of it which seem to be going for titilation over plot (oh, I know, in a horror series, what a shock). I'm also not sure about having it setting just two time periods, and the vast majority of it in 1964, rather than jumping about through history, and slowly tying things together. However, I am willing to keep giving it a chance longer than I normally would because the first series did just go on getting better and better. 6/10Grimm series 2
is still gender unbalanced and still has needlessly silly terminology, but other that is a lot of fun. I am DEEPLY in love with Monroe. The conceit is interesting, and it falls neatly into the slot for fantasy in my head. And a lot of the recurring characters are great too. I particularly love Nick's mum and Monroe's mad-as-a-bag-of-frogs biker ex-girlfriend Angelina. 8/10Continuum
on the other hand, I am starting to wonder if it was made to fit exactly into a slot in my head. It's like someone thought
Hey! Jennie loves sci-fi and she loves detective shows and she loves kickass female lead characters: I wonder what'd happen if we put all those things together?
The result is a show that's by no means perfect, but still really, really good. I particularly like that the police department's geek is a girl, and am enjoying very much the mystery-of-the-week format. It's still overly male, but it's a step in the right direction, and passes Bechdel most weeks. 8/10The Almighty Johnsons series 2
is being rather enjoyable too. Ingrid, Ty and Olaf are still my favourites. It's fun to see my predictions coming true, but also being twisted in unexpected ways. The episode A Damn Fine Woman is one of the finest episodes of television I have seen in a long time, and the rest of the series has been a lot of fun too. 8/10