The Day Of The Triffids (John Wyndham)

john-wyndham-book-coverThis is a sober book. I can imagine a dozen or so world leaders I’d hope would read it and discuss such in tandem over tea and crumpets. Or whatever Mr Trump feels like having today. Gauging our current run of apprehensions, one would be wise to explore this gem of the dystopian curve. Day of the Triffids is a meditation. There is no epic effort to capture the tooth and claw survival of the species. What occurs is both more subtle and sinister. The world as understood is over. JW was quite keen on destroying civilization in his novels. [Read more…]

Deadly Weapons (1974 USA)

deadly_weapons_chesty_morganWritten, directed, and produced by the pseudo-pornographic pioneer Doris Wishman, she was a leading figure in soft-core porn/exploitation flicks during the 1960s/70’s. She helped to fill the local ‘grind house’ cinemas with such fare as Keyholes Are For Peeping and Nude on the Moon where astronauts traveling to the moon are surprised to discover nudists are living up there. But she is most notorious for creating this dilapidated freak show about a woman who uses the only two weapons she has to hit back at the men who killed her husband. [Read more…]

Beneath The Planet Of The Apes (1970 USA)

tumblr_nz8ttify5j1sradg3o1_1280What is it about American astronauts? No sooner do they lock into some time warp than they crash their spaceship! NASA seems to have perfected time travel, but even a bumpy landing seems beyond them. Controversy has always centred around the film’s ending more than any other feature of it. Those who criticize it miss the point – this was intended to be the last apes film, because it was felt that another movie set in a post-apocalyptic ape ruled world would just be ”flogging a dead horse.” One of the greatest features of these films, started by the Statue of Liberty sequence in the original, was that they all contained ”shocker” endings, designed to send a shiver down the spine of the audience.  [Read more…]

Across The Nightingale Floor (Lian Hearn)

acrossthenightingalefloorWhen I finished Lian Hearn’s first Tale of the Otori series (I won’t be going any further), I felt as though I’d been eating Hershey’s chocolate when I expected at least Lindt. Waiter take this away and bring me some real food. Reading shouldn’t be hard work. Just skimming I struggled to stop my eyes from glazing over in utter boredom. The narrators each sound exactly the same. This is so lazy, research-wise too. Inserting Christianity into this mock up Japan was not wise either. Nor were the random earthquakes every ten pages or so. [Read more…]

MARILYN MONROE (Norman Mailer)

m-marilyn_monroe_mailer_relie_11aWe all know the tale by now. Behind the effortless cartoony-sexy fun were 63 takes, ten nervous breakdowns, not much love, and enough antidepressants to make even Robin Williams blush. I’d say read it as fiction or possibly a fictionalized story. It’s interesting (anything about Marilyn tends to be) but maybe check your facts in a couple of places? But this one is a winner thanks to some of the naughty pictures on display. I’m only kidding but there must be a reason why photographer Bert Stern gets a massive credit on the cover. [Read more…]

The League Of Gentlemen (1999 – United Kingdom)

amazonHello, hello! What’s all this shouting going on? We’ll have no trouble here. I’m only flesh and blood. Can’t keep writing reviews totalling hundreds of words. Not enough time in the day and all that. So, it goes without saying I give the LOG an absolute thumbs up. Its brilliant. It’s what satire should be. Out of ten I give it twelvety. If you love sick, twisted, cross-dressing comedy with nods to Britain’s proud Gothic tradition, this should be right up your alley. And yes, there is a Swansea (I should know as I was born there)…and there are other places too. [Read more…]

The Tingler (1959 USA)

tinglerThe Tingler (hopefully) works on a few levels. As a horror story at the base level, it’s a decent tale of a creature, fear and murder. The blood is minimal. There’s no gore and the language is clean. No nudity. No one is caught with their pants down, porking around in places where they shouldn’t be. As for Vincent Price, this maybe is one of his ten best performances. He manfully delivers each line of dialogue with an intensity worthy of Shakespeare.  [Read more…]

Walden (Henry David Thoreau)

walden-henry-david-thoreau-hardcover-cover-artAah, the passing of time in a natural environment. Usually I’m in too much of a hurry to really look, listen, smell and savour every word or sentence of a book. But when I am able to I’m aware of the little things around me and thinking about a certain pond…Mr Thoreau wasn’t just the original hippie, circa 1845. He was that most annoying beast: a practical hippie. A hippie with the skill to rustle up a meal from whatever he could find, forge or forage in the woods. Or build a glorious shack from a cow pat or the bark of an elm tree.
[Read more…]

It! (Stephen King)

king-book-coverKing did something special with IT, and I’m not sure exactly what it is….It might just be the sum of the entire equation which makes IT such a fantastic novel. A few times, I had to remind myself it is 2016, not 1958. (It was 2016, sorry…only 2 days into the new year and I’m already confused) If you are thinking of reading IT, it is definitely worth the investment. I’m glad I took the time to read it, savour it, and not rush through it. You got that? [Read more…]

Black Rain (1989 USA)

black-rain-3Made for 30 million bucks back when that sum would get you a seat at the top table. A place where the big machers compare the size of their mother’s mikvahs. This urban noir, photographed by Jan De Bont (director of “Speed”) makes Osaka look like the futuristic city in Ridley Scott’s other film, “Blade Runner.”  Same traffic and congestion of heavily populated streets, steam and people. Through De Bont’s lens the city is dark even during the day. Michael Douglas even dresses like another actor did in “Blade Runner.” [Read more…]

%d bloggers like this: