Archive for the ‘Cultural issues’ Category


A review of the 2018 film “RBG”

September 22nd, 2020 by Roger Darlington

The death of Supreme Court judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who served for 27 years as its most radical member, was a tragedy for the whole of liberal America. Aged 87 and having twice survived cancer, she succumbed to a third bout of cancer just weeks before the election of the President who constitutionally has the […]

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What are the most popular baby names in Britain?

September 10th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Of course, names change in popularity. According to the data compiled annually by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) and published each September, the most popular names for children born in England & Wales during 2019 were as follows: Position Boys Girls 1 Oliver Olivia 2 George Amelia 3 Noah Isla 4 Arthur Ava 5 […]

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A review of the novel “The Friends Of Harry Perkins” by Chris Mullin

September 9th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Mullin – then a political journalist – wrote the best-selling novel “A Very British Coup” which was published in 1982. It told the story of a Left-winger who became Prime Minister but was countered by the nefarious forces of the establishment. I found it very readable, but I thought the the characters were caricatures and […]

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A review of the 2017 film “Molly’s Game”

September 6th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

When you’re about to see a movie written and directed by Aaron Sorkin – creator of the wonderful television series “The West Wing” – you know what to expect: lots of fact-laiden dialogue delivered in snappy style and rapid cutting betweeen multifarious characters. There is plenty of these trademark features in “Molly’s Game” but also […]

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A review of the recent film “Crazy Rich Asians”

August 25th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

While this may not be the first Western-produced film with an East Asian cast – think “The Joy Luck Club” (1993) or “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” (2000) – the sheer number of cast members with various Asian backgrounds and the huge commercial success of this 2018 movie (it was the highest-grossing romantic comedy in a […]

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A review of the 1998 film “Dark City”

August 21st, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Written, produced and directed by the Australian Alex Proyas, this is not a movie that will appeal to everyone. It is part mind-twisting science fiction like “The Matrix” and part homage to German Expressionism of the 1920s. It looks wonderful – as dark as the title promises – but the plotting (a alien experiment with […]

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My review of “Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race” by Reni Eddo-Lodge (2017)

August 14th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

The award-winning black novelist Bernardine Evaristo has described the title of this non-fiction work – the first by Eddo-Lodge – as “gloriously provocative” and “marketing gold”. The truth is, of course, that the whole book is a conversation with white and non-white readers, by a young black woman born in north London and raised by a Nigerian mother, […]

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While you’re waiting for the “Top Gun’ sequel, here’s 63 other aviation films to watch

August 6th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Two of my many interests are aviation and cinema. I really loved the movie “Top Gun” which was released as long ago as 1986 and I can’t wait to see the sequel “Top Gun: Maverick” which is now not due to be released until summer 2021. Fortunately there are many other aviation films around if […]

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A review of the 2017 film “The Shape Of Water”

August 4th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Somehow I didn’t manage to see this fantasy horror movie at the cinema and, by the time I viewed it on the television, it had collected a whole host of nominations and awards, including 13 nominations at the 90th Academy Awards where it won for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Production Design, and Best Original […]

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A review of the new French film “The Truth”

August 2nd, 2020 by Roger Darlington

In the 1960s, I was a tiny bit in love with French actress Catherine Deneuve (“Repulsion”, “Belle De Jour”, “Mayerling”). For decades, I’ve been more than a little bit in love with French actress Juliette Binoche (“The English Patient”, “Chocolat”, “Clouds Of Sils Maria”). So the opportunity to see both in this (largely) French-language film, […]

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