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Rams

Published February 24, 2021

Rams

Good film this, considering the premise is two grumpy old men not speaking to each other. But it’s surprisingly moving in places, occasionally funny, and a really good story underneath about a struggling community trying to survive against all the odds.

I Care a Lot

Published February 21, 2021

I Care a Lot

It took a little while to get into the groove of this film because all the various services have it down as a comedy and it is not funny, not at all. Rosamund Pike plays a dead-hearted woman who cons the elderly out of their assets, until she bites off more than she can chew and comes up against a mafia boss. It’s somehow really interesting and entertaining whilst also raising that difficult question of who to root for when both sides are pretty evil?

Flora & Ulysses

Published February 21, 2021

Flora & Ulysses

I was 100% expecting this to be a twenty minute movie, one we watched and switched off and moved on. It seemed an inoffensive kid’s movie but hey, it’s about a superhero squirrel, it can’t be any good, right? Wrong! It was amazing. It was inspirational and funny and moving and really we had to keep pausing it to consider each amazing line!

The Dig

Published February 20, 2021

The Dig

Exquisite film, this one. Slow-paced, softly-spoken, not hard-hitting action but gentle drama which somehow manages to heighten the emotions of what could be a boring story (man digs a hole) but actually manages to be an enlightening piece about history and what it means to all of us.

Palmer

Published February 20, 2021

Palmer

Big brooding bear Justin does his time and tries to make a better life for himself, scooping up an adorable if precocious kid who just wants to live his own style. The challenges they face apart and together make for a fascinating story, and what I liked about it is it wasn’t so much about them growing and becoming better people, but learning how to live in a society that didn’t understand them.

Ten Good Reasons by Jason Donovan

Published February 20, 2021

Ten Good Reasons by Jason Donovan

Let’s be clear, Too Many Broken Hearts and Especially For You (added later, I think) are both absolute bops and to start and finish your album with those is a great thing. Unfortunately, everything in the middle is just that standard Stock, Aitken and Waterman pop - fine but almost identical to each other. It makes me want to give Jason a big hug and say, you’ve done some good work here but there’s so much more to come!

The Human Demands by Amy Macdonald

Published February 20, 2021

The Human Demands by Amy Macdonald

Just a good, easy-going album, this one. Enjoyable to listen to but nothing that’s going to stand the test of time. In my head I was expecting it to be more like Sara Bareilles, but actually it’s more upbeat than that, and I think I preferred it.

Midnight in Chernobyl by Adam Higginbotham

Published February 20, 2021

Midnight in Chernobyl by Adam Higginbotham

This book is simply incredible. It’s meticulous and detailed and there’s plenty of science in there but somehow the author makes it brilliantly readable, you don’t want to put it down. At the heart, despite all the politics and technical detail, it’s a story about the people who made poor decisions, who were thrust into the heart of it through no fault of their own, who showed incredible courage in the face of so many unknowns.

Factory fresh

Published February 19, 2021

Factory fresh

In my last post I mentioned that Inside the Factory inspired my purchase of a casserole dish. If you’re not aware, the show features Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey visiting various factories around the country, sometimes world, to find out how our staples are made. It’s always interesting to see how a factory works, how the weird machines do what they do, and our hosts give us lots of fascinating facts and figures along the way.

The Marlow Murder Club by Robert Thorogood

Published February 19, 2021

The Marlow Murder Club by Robert Thorogood

I’m always keen to read Robert’s output, initially this was Death In Paradise tie-in novels but this is a standalone book, although perhaps the first of a new series. This time an unlikely group of neighbours get together to solve a mystery, led by the formidable Judith who writes puzzles for a living and has her own history to deal with.