Sunday, 24 October 2010

TV

Band of Brothers
Part Three Carentan [2nd watch]

Downton Abbey
1x05 Episode Five
[Watch it (again) on ITV Player.]

Have I Got News For You
40x02 (21/10/10 edition; extended repeat)
[Watch the extended version (again) on iPlayer.]

Just Good Friends
1x01 After All This Time

QI
8x06 Happiness (extended repeat)
[Watch the extended version (again) on iPlayer.]

Sarah Jane's Alien Files
1x02 Episode 2
I'm warming to this a bit now... but perhaps that's because I watched it while wrapping some presents, which it happened to be the perfect length to cover.
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Film / Theatre

Oklahoma!
A filmed version of the late-'90s West End revival, directed by Trevor Nunn and starring Maureen Lipman and a pre-X-Men Hugh Jackman.

this week on 100 Films

6 (six!) new reviews were posted to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...

The Band Wagon (1953)
In this behind-the-scenes musical, Fred Astaire plays Tony Hunter, a slightly washed-up star of stage and screen. One can’t help but wonder if his performance has an autobiographical edge. It’s of no concern to the viewer though, because he’s as wonderful as ever.

Brigadoon (1954)
The Scottish accents are appalling, the costumes and setting gratingly twee, the Highlands recreated entirely on a soundstage... But the ill-conceived cast, costumes and studio-bound setting begin to pale under the charm of Gene Kelly and the machinations of the plot. Even the Scottish accents, though consistently dreadful, eventually become less irritating.

Gigi (1958)
a film about largely horrid people doing morally dubious things. It begins with an elder gentleman singing Thank Heaven for Little Girls; not because they bring a youthful joy to old age, but because they’re a constant source of new young ladies for him to have affairs with — he’s a dirty old man really.

Grindhouse (2007)
Rodriguez packs every scene with at least one element you should expect from this style of cinema: graphic blood-spurting violence, horrific mutations, vicious zombies, over-the-top logic-light gunfights, entirely random explosions, clich├ęd dialogue, stock characters, extended shots of the female form… Have I missed anything? If I have, it’s probably there too.

Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)
at times it reminded me of Pride & Prejudice, albeit a version with much of the dramatic tension removed. For instance, Austen’s tale spends a long time creating a bad impression of Mr Darcy, only to eventually reveal his (mostly) good intentions. St. Louis manages all of five minutes in which the Darcy-ish character is suspected of having done something dastardly before the truth is revealed.

Witchfinder General (1968)
it’s more like an historical action-adventure [than a horror film], with soldiers dashing around the countryside, horseback chases, bar brawls, ambushes and the occasional sword fight.

More next Sunday.