The most important line in both 300 and 300: Rise of an Empire, is one they share. In 300, it’s an iconic moment, roared by Gerard Butler as King Leonidas shortly before he commits the murder that makes war inevitable. The image of McLeonidas, as I like to call him, screaming ‘THIS! IS! SPARTA!’ and front kicking the Persian ambassador into the pit the Spartans keep around for just this sort of occasion is iconic.
COMPETITION’S NOW CLOSED FOLKS. THANKS FOR ENTERING, WINNERS WILL BE NOTIFIED SHORTLY
It’s been a long week. Has it been a long week for you? Definitely been a long week for me. So, as I collect myself a bit, I thought a change of pace would be spiffy. Let’s have a competition! For this!
So, over the weekend, genre fiction Twitter basically burned to the ground. The announcement of Jonathan Ross as celebrity host of the Hugos led to one of the fastest, and nastiest, flame wars in a very long time. Inside eight hours, he’d stood down but the bad feeling on both sides of the debate was, and remains, fairly monumental. To some people, this was a huge opportunity for mainstream appeal torpedoed by genre fiction’s boundless capacity for self-destruction. For others, it was a controversy bullet dodged and a host with an awful reputation successfully removed. Very few people came out of this thing looking remotely good, on either side. Also, there’s now a burning question about LonCon;
Since shortly after the reign of Charles I, the BBC has had a half hour long film review show called Film XXXX. Admittedly the early years were less a show more an elaborate set of tapestries and plays, it is after all difficult to review a medium that’s still several centuries away from being invented, but they persevered. By the time the 1980s, and I, rolled around it was an actual TV show about actual films with an actual presenter; Barry Norman.
Harold Ramis died yesterday. One of the greatest comedians of the modern era, Ramis was a renaissance clown who wrote, directed, and acted. His movies are uniformly worth your time but, if somehow you’ve never seen Groundhog Day, do yourself an enormous favor and start there. It’s a glorious movie with a pitch perfect central performance that, years later, directly influenced one of the best Supernatural episodes ever. Plus you’ll never listen to ‘I Got You Babe’ the same way again.
As always, there’s a lot of speculation about what the next wave of Marvel movies will include. There’s the usual skutch of sequels, plus, it looks like, at least a couple of new movies from some nicely eccentric characters. The heavily rumored idea of Mads Mikkelsen as Doctor Strange, for example, is brilliant whilst the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer released this week looks exactly as odd as I desperately wanted it to be.
But there’s one thing I would pay very good money to see and have made my peace with them never making; A Tony and Pepper movie.
So, the last few weeks have been a touch busy. My day job has increased, which is nice (More money!) and less nice (Three buildings! Two towns! Some commuting!) and Marguerite has successfully completed the month or so long exam-a-thon. Oh and then there are the podcasts. And the deadline surfing. And the possible imminent return to a martial art. And the sleeping.
Like I say, busy.
Anyway, as a result The Friday Film went away for a fortnight. It’ll be back this week but, in the meantime, I’ve watched some movies. Here are some thoughts about them.
Welcome to this week’s Open Mic Monday. Today, the spot belongs to Travis Legge. Travis is an indie filmmaker and RPG designer. He’s one of the most dedicated people I know and watching him shepherd Dry Spell through crowd funding and production has been genuinely inspiring. Here he is to talk about the movie.
I’ve known Clara Barker for what may officially be a ridiculous amount of time. Her rapier wit, total compassion for her friends and abject refusal to give even the slightest of shits shone like a beacon through the frequently horrific events of our final years at school. Since then, I’ve gone onto the freelance Clark Kent life and she’s become a fiercely talented musician. Her new album, Hard Work & Whiskey is available on itunes, Spotify, Amazon and Last.FM now. Earlier today, she released a video for the new single ‘The Bees Song’. It’s very sweet, a thematic bullseye for the day and features a special guest appearance.
Happy Valentine’s day to those who celebrate it. And Happy Video day buddy:)