Category Archives: film


This film is amazing. Can’t use the word ‘enjoyed’ as it is so tense but that’s one of the strengths of the film. The other is the atmosphere it creates; you feel like you’re in space, you feel the bleakness and wonder of it all. I wish I’d seen it at the cinema as a huge screen would have been amplified that effect. The film is slightly over-sentimental in parts and there are some physics errors but they don’t detract from its brilliance.


It had been a while since I watched a film. Tonight I watched Collateral. It was a welcome return to the world of movies; Collateral is simply superb. The write-ups describe it as a ‘stylish thriller’ and I can’t describe ti more succinctly than that. Tom Cruise plays a wonderfully menacing villain and the city scenes of L.A. are mesmerising. Tension is broken by a few comic moments where nerves as well as humour produce laughter. Marvellously heart-thumping stuff and a cracking soundtrack too.

Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana

I get tired sometimes. This leads to my becoming irritable and, before too long, mildly morose. Experience has taught me to force myself to seek something to lift my soul out of the gloom, something that will instantly deliver a moment of pure happiness. Tonight that something is the beautiful, soaring Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana by Mascagni. I think I’d heard it before but it first made its impact on me when I heard it in the excellent film Raging Bull.


From one creepy mansion to another…

I watched the film Rebecca today, having heard about the book on an episode of My Life in Books. The film draws you in and is quietly spooky. Mrs Danvers and Jack Favell are delightfully horrid characters.

The only drawback for me is the irritating manner of Mrs De Winters. She’s overly subservient to her husband and blames herself even when she’s not at fault. To top everything off she faints at a trial. In short, a woman who makes herself completely helpless without a man. Maybe this kind of behaviour was normal for women at the time but I just wanted to give her a good shake. I remember feeling the same when I first read Pride and Prejudice.

I don’t tend to watch old films but this one has convinced me that I should investigate others.

The Others

I first saw this film at the cinema about 11 years ago. I’d had a drink with friends beforehand and fell asleep during it twice so couldn’t really remember it, though I did see the end. I watched it again last night all the way through (I was sober this time!) and really liked it. The Others is atmospheric, chilling and Nicole Kidman is brilliant. It did spook me though; I didn’t sleep very well afterwards.

I’m Not Scared

I seem to have fallen out of the habit of watching a film in the evenings. I tend to read books or watch programmes these days. The last film I watched was Hanna, which is action-packed and good-looking but somehow lacking substance.

Tonight I watched I’m Not Scared, which was most absorbing and very touching. Set in rural southern Italy in the 70s, it is a thriller showcasing the bravery and loyalty of a ten year old boy. As well as the dreamy scenery the cameras captured lots of fantastic wildlife: a baby hedgehog, several owls, a frog and a snake to name but a few. The child actors were completely believable. I cried at the end. A splendid way to spend a Friday night in.

The Lovely Bones

I’ve just finished reading this. I’d already watched the film, so I knew how the story was going to end, but I still enjoyed it purely because it is so easy to read. I didn’t think it lived up to the hype though. For a start I don’t think it’s very well written. Considering the material it covers, the book seems very benign. It’s a good story though and I like Sebold’s very original (as far as I can tell) idea of having the narrator tell the story after her death.

It’s rare but in this case I have to conclude that the film is better than the book, though I can’t say for certain that I would maintain that position had I read the book before I’d seen the film. Of course the film simplifies and accelerates the book, as films have to, but still I found Peter Jackson’s adaptation to be visually breathtaking and the suspense was masterful.

(6th in 2012)

Julie and Julia

Julie and Julia is a charming film. It features blogging, cooking and love – three of my favourite things. There’s a scene that touched me in particular: when Julia Child’s husband gives her the book Larousse Gastronomique as a birthday present. It reminded me of how thrilled I was when I was given a copy by my husband. Not that I’ve used mine as much as Julia Child must have! I also enjoyed the portrayal of an older couple who are enthusiastic and positive about life as well as being completely in love. I hope that’s what’s in store for me.