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Saturday, February 23, 2008
Yeah, but don't get too excited; it wasn't that good but more of them later. First up, some WHO scuttle. It would appear that PAUL "O" GRADY is to appear in the finale of SERIES 4 - see HERE. The last few finales have all had 'celebs' so this would just be continuing the trend (although they don't really need to now).

DAVEY T in wonky eye shock!

The other news regarding the upcoming series - which either starts on March 22 or April 5 depending on who you believe - is the return of an old foe. I won't say who in case you are wanting to remain "Spoiler Free" but, if you are curious, go HERE. There is no confirmation of this at all, only many rumours (from costume fitters no less!) and, to be honest, it's not that big a surprise for us older WHO fans. THE SUN are also notorious for regurgitating material they find in online forums. Sticking with WHO, there was an amusing episode of CHAIN REACTION on RADIO 4 which featured DAVEY T and CATHY T. I say 'featured' but, in fact, it was all them; she was interviewing him. Larfs ensued when CT revealed she had never seen STAR WARS and then asked, "There's more than one?" You can hear for the next 5 days or so HERE. Well worth a listen.

There's that eye again...

MARTHA was in TORCHWOOD again although her part was significantly reduced from last week, boo! Oh, before I go on, this paragraph refers explicitly to the events of the episode just broadcast on BBC3 so if you don't want to know what happens, then avoid the next paragraph - you have been warned!

Nice pants, oops, sorry I meant 'plants'!

After the previous two installments, which were great, this was a bit of a let~down. Great to have OWEN the focus again, and BURN "Is He Dead? Or Is He Alive? There's Only One Way To Find Out..." GORMAN was fab, but the story was botched. The CGI smoke 'thing' was good but the skeleton was not; reminded me of KNIGHMARE. The idea of 'Death' coming back was also good but the notion that, it effed off back to the 'darkness' (another interesting idea referred to constantly during the first series) after a fight was inexplicable. Of course, it wasn't really 'Death' (at least I hope not) but an alien of some description, wonder if it'll return? The return of the 'Resurrection Glove' was welcome - they always come in pairs IANTO warned JACK/Us in Series One - but it was clumsily done. The small child at the start was another interesting addition to the folklore of the show but they need to concentrate on consistency. What I did appreciate was the dichotomy the shoe, or even 'show', has presented; you've got JACK, who can never die, and there's OWEN, who is gonna die at any moment. Nice polemic. To be brief, this episode acts as a miniature for TORCHWOOD, some good, some bad; but overall, enjoyable. Much more so than the lamentable ASHES TO ASHES.

You don't really see JB out much these days, hem hem...

A2A has now ended for me. Remember in JACKIE BROWN when SAMUEL "L" JACKSON turns to ROBERT "de" NIRO and says, "What happened to you? Your ass used to be beautiful." That's how I feel. And, if I could, I would shoot a gun into its bloated stomach. It's dead and I shan't be watching again. The same cannot be said for LOST, however. It goes from strength to strength. I am aware some of you won't have seen this week's episode yet so I'll be brief. It was great. AMERICAN IDOL has got dull. It's the final 24 and they're all sh*t but, according to the gang, this lot are the best ever. Yeah, but there were sh*t too, it ain't much of a compliment. A~holes! The highlight? Seeing PAULA ABDUL's new video. It was like the Nineties and the Noughties never happened. RANDY was 'awesome' on the ole bass guitar. Stout work bee~atches!

THE HELIVETS, quite funny.

As the title of this post suggests, THAT MITCHELL & WEBB LOOK is back. Sad to say, though, there weren't many laughs; even SIR DIGBY CHICKEN CAESAR only got a guffaw from me. The good stuff came in the form of a CARRY~ON parody; the never~ending football skit (which they have been doing for a while now); the appearance of ADRIAN "Everyone Loves Him" CHILES in their 'garden'; and the NUMBERWANG movie. It's good to see them not re~using all the same gags and characters from the first series but, as a starter, this was not satisfying.

It is shocking, he's wearing white socks!

Movie~wise, I caught THERE WILL BE BLOOD last weekend. I can see why DANIEL "Day" LEWIS is being lauded at every opportunity, he is mesmeric. The opening ten minutes, or so, are fascinating and it's just him. Him and the elements. PAUL "Thomas" ANDERSON works some magic there, simplistically (although, technically, it ain't simplistic at all) telling the story, through visuals alone, of one man's discovery and refinement of oil. PAUL "Little Mr Sunshine" DANO seems to feed off the inspiration of his co~star and delivers a shockingly good performance too. Worth mentioning too is the spell-binding soundtrack by JONNY "That's Right I'm In Radiohead; But Don't Hold That Against Me" GREENWOOD. The actual film itself, though, was a let~down. I lurve PT ANDERSON's work - from HARD EIGHT up to (and including) PUNCH DRUNK LOVE - he is a modern day genius and his direction here is top~notch. But, crucially, there's something missing. Heart. It's an odd thing to say but I have been trying to pin~point why I didn't connect with it. Some say it's boring, I disagree. At no point was I bored. I was transfixed all the way. If you've seen it I'd love to know what you though, stick it in the comments section.

"Tale as old as time..."

Not warranting as much space as the previous film, JUMPER got my attention last weekend too. Let's just say I am looking forward to the sequel, SWEATSHIRT. Actually, it isn't terrible and it's mercifully short. Next up was BE KIND REWIND from MICHEL "Did The Video For Macca's Modern~Day Classic, DANCE TONIGHT" GONDRY. A fascinating idea - although first seen in NICKELODEON 's "The Amanda Show", allegedly; see HERE - that comes across in a very mainstream and tame (and I don't mean that pejoratively) way. MOS "Ford Prefect? Hardly." DEF puts in a subtle show but JACK "Still Funny?" BLACK is pretty much as you'd expect. I was hoping that GONDRY could have done an ETERNAL SUNSHINE on him like he did JIM "The Number 23 Doesn't Look As Good As 'THE NUMBERWANG CODE" CARREY. He fills the role well enough with his like~ability (getting less with each film I may add) and humour. Particularly amusing was his rendition of the theme tune to GHOSTBUSTERS. There are some neat visual moments, which I won't spoil, from the director and the whole thing has an unreal Eighties feel~good vibe about it. You'll come away smiling but you won't know why. It's thin on substance - it's a bit YouTube-y et al inspred - considering SPOTLESS MIND was so dense but there's certainly room for fluff in this world especially when it's delivered with such style. There is a great term introduced, which will live on, and that's "SWEDING". If you've seen the trailer you'll get it - it's the result of the guys re~creating other films in 20 minutes or less. Now, check this for meta~film, GONDRY has "sweeded" his own trailer for the film! Check it out below:

Lastly, in the world of film, I caught the extravagance (at least I hope it would be) of U23D. Having seen a couple of 3D films recently I was excited to see what they would do with a concert film. It is the perfect medium for it; the sense of scale and dynamism can be re~created with aplomb. Sadly, this flick fell short. It starts off very well creating the tension and excitement of the live gig but when they start playing it gets a bit dull; no fault of BONO and the guys I might add. The 3D is underused and I kept thinking, "They don't want to blow their load early on, they'll start getting all fancy soon". And they did, eventually, but it was about three songs from the end. During "The Fly" the words started to fly of the screen and this is what I'd hoped for from the start - dynamism. Even stranger was the fact that during the end~credits (when another song started up) the images from the screens behind the band started to stretch out in front of you and interacting with them. That's what I wanted all the way through and it was brilliantly realised. It certainly would have helped during the more 'thoughtful' moments during their performance (the slow songs and album tracks).

"And I can see those fighter planes!"

Perhaps, because I was ware of what 3D can do, this is why I was disappointed. If this were to be your first experience of the form then you may well be blown away. One final word, the camera~work was slow, too slow. 3D helps enhance the notion, and reality, of speed but it was almost static throughout. Faster work would have helped immensely. These visual points annoy me 'cos U2 have been at the edge (groan) of this sort~of~thing for a while. The concert movie genre is still dominated by REM's "Tourfilm" and PRINCE's "Sign 'O' The Times" A missed chance, could have been so much better.

High-larious new sitcom in the offing?

'Til the next time,

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posted by Cameron McEwan at 12:34 pm -
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