Archive for the ‘Cultural issues’ Category


Word of the day: pareidolia

April 24th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Pareidolia is a psychological phenomenon in which the mind responds to a stimulus, such as an image or a sound, by perceiving a familiar pattern where none actually exists. Common examples are perceived images of animals, faces, or objects in cloud formations or pieces of food or features in nature, the man in the moon, […]

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A review of the novel “Where My Heart Used To Beat”

April 23rd, 2017 by Roger Darlington

This novel by Sebastian Faulks is not a work to cheer the spirits, but it is really well-written and very thoughtful and thought-proving. I can recommend it and I’ve reviewed it here.

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A review of the new film “The Sense Of An Ending”

April 21st, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Based on the Booker Prize-winning novella by Julian Barnes (which I have read – my review here), inevitably this film adaptation is diffrent from the original work. The structure of the book was a section of the (unreliable) narrator’s time at school and university followed by the present day coming to terms with revelations of […]

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A review of the new comedy film “Going In Style”

April 16th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

There are very few films that feature older characters in main roles so I suppose we should commend “Going In Style” for making the effort. Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman and Alan Arkin are all hitting or into their 80s and the three of them are very talented actors who are hardly stretched in this remake […]

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Word of the day: voluptuary

April 13th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

I’ve recently started reading the novel “”Where My Heart Used To Beat” by Sebastian Faulks, the author best-known for his earlier work “Birdsong”. On the first page, the narrator states: “I supposed I’d say I was a voluptuary, someone who had seen it all …” The word ‘voluptuary’ was new to me, so I looked […]

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At last, I get to see the stage version of “Les Miserables”

April 12th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Five years ago, I saw the film version of this famous musical [my review here]. It’s quite a complicated plot but there’s a good summary here. Meanwhile the musical has been running in London for over 30 years, but only this week did I finally see it at the Queen’s Theatre. The storyline is quite […]

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How many films have you seen?

April 7th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Since childhood, I have been a massive movie fan and, since the age of 13, I’ve kept a diary which includes a record of every film that I’ve seen at the cinema, on rental, or on television (I’m a man – I like counting things!). I’ve just reached the grand total of 2,500. With luck, […]

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A review of the new sci-fi movie “Ghost In The Shell”

April 4th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Beginning in 1989, there was a Japanese manga serial by Masamune Shirow. Then in 1995 there was a Japanese anime movie by Mamoru Oshii, said to be one of the best ever in this genre. Now we have a Hollywood remake directed by the British Rupert Sanders. I have no familiarity with the original series […]

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A review of the latest Ken Loach film “I, Daniel Blake”

March 21st, 2017 by Roger Darlington

British director Ken Loach – now aged 80 – is a film-maker with singular focus and talent. Nobody else would make a work about the benefits system with such a personal style and powerful impact. Like so many of his films, the acting and dialogue are so naturalistic that the work could almost be a […]

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A review of the new film “Hacksaw Ridge”

March 15th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Even 70 years after the end of the Second World War, there are amazing stories to be told. Hacksaw Ridge was the nickname for the Maeda Escarpment, a location on Okinawa Island defended ferociously by the Japanese against American attack, and this film depicts the heroic tale of Desmond Doss who saved an incredible number […]

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