Sunday, 24 December 2017


University Challenge
Christmas 2017 Durham University v Keble College, Oxford
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

10x16 The Best of 2017
[Watch it (again) on All 4.]

Joanna & Jennifer: Absolutely Champers
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]


Elf (2003)
[#173 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

this week on 100 Films

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

Hidden Figures (2016)
Based on a true story, Hidden Figures is about three black women working at NASA in the early ’60s, a time when segregation was still in force in the US. It’s a double whammy of timely issues, then: they struggle to prove they’re clever and have scientific know-how because they’re women, and they struggle to prove they’re worth treating with respect because they’re black. How depressing that these things are still relevant over 50 years later.
Read more here.

John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017)
For anyone who particularly liked the snippets of this world’s mythology from the first movie, Chapter 2 delivers what they’re after in spades... Of course, it’s all still in service of people shooting and stabbing and punching and whatever-else-ing each other. Maybe that’s doing it a disservice. Nonetheless, there’s lots of intricately choreographed, cleanly staged action — and what more do you want from a film like this?
Read more here.

The LEGO Batman Movie (2017)
You might think the story is almost by the by, because the real point is the gags — and fortunately the movie is indeed consistently funny, with a Flash-like pace to keep things moving... But don’t disregard the narrative offhand, because it also summons up surprisingly effective character arcs. Who expected that, right?
Read more here.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)
I’ve felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if a small but vocal group of fanboys suddenly cried out in terror and were unfortunately not silenced because on the internet such complaining goes on forever. Yes, something terrible has happened: a new Star Wars movie has come out and, rather than go the Force Awakens route of appealing to nostalgia and familiarity, it’s attempted to boldly go where no Star Wars movie has gone before. Well, it’s maybe not quite that innovative, but writer and director Rian Johnson has given us an Episode VIII that eschews rehashing former glories for an attempt to push the franchise forward in interesting new ways. It’s not an unmitigated success, but it is considerably more than just “a good effort”.
Read more here.

I also wrote a piece about my continuing experience with 4K UHD...

More next Sunday.