Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Games Day Germany

Expect a regular blog bulletin again soon. I just wanted to send out a swift public apology. With enormous regret, I find I am unable to attend this weekend's Games Day in Germany. I am REALLY sorry to let the German readership down, and I'm also sorry for myself, to be perfectly honest, because this was going to be my first German Games Day, and I was looking forward to meeting the readers there face-to-face, especially regular posters like Packmaster. Pack, I hope you'll be able to forgive me for this last minute disappointment.

Basically, I'm been pretty unpleasantly ill these last few days, and I'm not getting well enough again fast enough. The advice is, don't fly (it's something exotically viral - I'm having tests done). I have already told BL to book me up for Germany next year, and in the meantime I will see if there's anything else that can be done to make up for my spectacular failure to appear. Watch this space.

Once again, I'm sorry, folks. I hope you all have a great Games Day.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Better late than never.

Zing! It’s Tuesday! Sorry about that, but I was distracted on Friday.

I’ve been reviewing my top ten list, and “Raquel Welch in a suede bikini” seems like the most convincing argument for any of the films.

Big - If you’re going to steal first post, kindly zing! That’s what everyone does, even me (see above).

Belfast Rory - It would indeed be awesome to turn the Gaunt’s Ghost series into a graphic novel. I’m not the man to ask. I suggest you pester Black Library.

Hrothgar - The Han/Leia exchange at the climax of “Empire” is, of course, the crowning moment of that film. When I saw it, first, as a teenager in Leicester Square, a kid in the row behind me cried out, “I love you too!” when Carrie Fisher announced her line. It spoilt the whole film for me. “Anchors Aweigh” is an undoubtedly fabulous film, but turn your attention to “Singin’ in the Rain” and you’ll see Gene Kelly at his best, and out-danced by Donald O’Connor, and out-sung by Debbie Reynolds. As Nik reminded me, Ginger Rogers once said, and I paraphrase, “I don’t know what the fuss is about Fred Astaire. I did everything he did, but backwards and in heels!”

Theydrilledholesinmyteeth - I also don’t share the view that a film can be raised to the ranks of the truly great, merely based on their soundtracks. “The Magnificent Seven” is the one exception, in so far as it is a great film, anyway. “Apocalypse Now” is a thumping good movie, but I prefer “Hamburger Hill” or “A Midnight Clear” when it comes to great war films. I take your point on “Batman Begins”... As the name suggests, it is fantastic at the beginning. My main complaint relates to the end of the movie, when the plot gets all fatooshed. It’s the greatest super-hero movie of all time, except for the last third. But the first two-thirds are really good. “The Duellists” is, of course, an absolutely brilliant movie, and “Ghost Dog” is a very fine film indeed.

Rob - “Barry Lyndon” is a pretty good movie, too. I haven’t yet seen “There Will be Blood”, but I intend to. You reference the John Woo, Hong Kong movies, but I don’t think that anything can better “Hard Boiled”.

Everyone - So, they fudged the regeneration and Tenant didn’t leave. I’m actually quite happy about that, because Tenant is my favourite Doctor in ages, but I’m pretty f**ked off about the cheating cliffhanger. There are all sorts of things about the final episode of season IV that were fantastic, but there were also all sorts of niggling and hanging sillynesses that made me shake my fist at the screen. If you enjoyed it, as I must admit, I did, then Hurrah! If you press me over the next few weeks, I might deconstruct the cliffhanger and show you what p**sed me off about it. Whatever, Russell T Davies has done an amazing job in resurrecting Doctor Who and I applaud him for it.

Cor - You may care to enjoy the David Tennant and Catherine Tate audio that I have just written for BBC audio.

Rory - I really like Donna. I really like the fact that Catherine Tate has acted her boots off, and been a proper character, a proper companion. I won’t hear a word said against her.

Xhalax - I applaud your list and it’s very age-appropriate. I would question “The Lion King” in favour of “The Jungle Book”, and I would question “Hot Fuzz” in favour of the entire “Spaced” series, but that’s just me.

Nik - Bernard Cribbins is simply wonderful. I may be wrong, but didn’t he help thwart the Daleks in the ‘60s? With paint on their eyestalks? And Roy Castle was pretty dashing as well, especially with the McWhirter brothers on the Guiness Book of Records show.

Chilon - Welcome. The Monty Python films lurk in my top 30, especially “Holy Grail” and “Now for Something More Interesting”. I also have a very soft spot for “The Meaning of Life”, and, for Ingmar Bergman. I think that a list of the top 10 worst movies of all time would be quite compelling, but it depends upon the criteria. Just totally crap films? Or, films that are quite compelling, yet sh*t? There isn’t going to be a Harlon Nayl trilogy. The third, and final, Inquisitor trilogy is going to be the Bequin trilogy.

Mob - Thank you for saying that I have a great radio voice. It goes with the face. Black Library podcasts would be a great idea.

Big - Thunderchild! Best moment, ever!

Leo - “Onwards, my hawk men!” You just have to shout it.

Tom - Nice top ten, close but no banana.

Big and Who - You know it makes sense.

I’m off to regenerate, but I’ll still be David Tenant.

Vworp! Vworp!