Sunday 15 June 2014


How I Met Your Mother
9x19 Vesuvius
OK, I have no idea what the episode titles mean at this point.
[Watch it (again) on 4oD.]


Journey into Fear (1943)
[#51 in 100 Films in a Year 2014]


Neptune's Brood by Charles Stross
Part Two: Chapter 1

The Truth of Fact, the Truth of Feeling by Ted Chiang

Fourth Hugo Best Novelette nominee.

It's another first-person letter "like it's a real historical document... about the future!" one, a style that has increasingly grated with me as my Hugo reading has gone on. Perhaps that means I'm judging this one unfairly, but as it also did the "two apparently unconnected story threads unfolding at the same time... that come together at the end!" thing again; and it had pretty much the same primary SF idea as an episode of Black Mirror, which I felt did it better. Add all that together and I didn't warm to it at all!

Nonetheless, you can read it at the above link.

So that's not a good hit rate for the novelettes, I'm afraid. I'm not even going to bother with the fifth, because I've not heard a single person have anything good to say about it. The Lady Astronaut of Mars is definitely my top pick, and I'll have to debate amongst myself which (if any) I rank below it, and in what order.

this week on 100 Films

Four brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...

Elysium (2013)
Elysium is a parable; one related to current hot-button topics (in the US especially) like immigration and access to healthcare for the poor. I’m sure some would therefore characterise it as Left Wing, for good or ill, but I think its underlying message is more fundamental than that: it’s just humanitarian.
Read more here.

Ghost Rider (2007)
The MacGuffin storyline feels ripped from Constantine, but here executed via a screenplay written in Dairylea on a block of Stilton, shot on Camembert film with Cheddar cameras.
Read more here.

Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
it’s a difficult film to digest in one viewing, because there’s so much there... it’s packed with incident, and shaped in a non-traditional narrative structure. A first viewing is an exercise in following what’s going on, what connects to what else, why things are happening in such an order. It fairly begs, “get a handle on it this time, you can analyse it when you watch it again”.
Read more here.

The Punisher (2004)
This is the second of three live-action Punishers, all unconnected. Now the rights are back with Marvel, how long before another reboot?
Read more here.

Additionally, new to the new blog was...

Boogie Nights (1997)
I didn’t fall for it in the same way I did for Magnolia... One I may get a better feel for when I see it again some day.
Read more here.

More next Sunday.