Archive for the ‘Cultural issues’ Category


“I’m still standing”

March 20th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

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What was the greatest film ever made? Let me make a nomination.

March 17th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Readers of this blog will know of my love for the cinema. At the weekend, I ‘braved’ the coronavirus to go to the British Film Instiute and see my all-time favourite film on the big screen. Since it was first released in 1962, over a period of almost six decades, I’ve viewed “Lawrence Of Arabia” […]

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“Parasite” becomes highest earning subtitled film

March 14th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

The Oscar-winning horror-thriller “Parasite” has become the highest earning foreign language film at the UK box office, overtaking the 2004 Mel Gibson-directed film “The Passion of the Christ”. Curzon, the South Korean film’s UK distributors, has reported that “Parasite” has passed “Passion”’s cumulative total of £11,078,861 on 6 March. “Parasite” was released on 7 February […]

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A review of the new French arthouse film “Portrait Of A Lady On Fire”

March 6th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

This wonderful French-language arthouse film is a rarity in the world of cinema: a work written and directed by a woman (Céline Sciamma) with cinematography by a woman (Claire Mathon) and a cast list – headed by Noémie Merlant and Adèle Haenel – in which men barely feature. Set around 1770, it is located on […]

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A review of the utterly over-the-top movie “Birds Of Prey”

February 23rd, 2020 by Roger Darlington

Thought that films about comic book characters were all man-made? Well, here in the DC comic universe, we have a movie with women as producer (Margot Robbie), writer (Christina Hodson) and director (Cathy Yan) in which the girls also fill the main role of Harley Quinn (Robbie again) and the three eponymous birds (Mary Elizabeth […]

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Thank you and farewell “Madam Secretary”

February 15th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

I suppose all good things have to come to an end and I’ve just watched the last episode of the American television series “Madam Secretary”. The series began in 2014 and seasons 1-5 each had between 20-23 episodes. The sixth and last season has concluded with just 10 episodes, making 120 episodes in all. I’ve […]

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A review of the important new movie “Queen & Slim”

February 14th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

How many American films have a black woman as both writer and director and black actors in both the lead roles and in most of the support roles? But this is how it should be for a work that reflects the Black Lives Matter agenda and it is a genre-blending triumph, part thriller-cum-social commentary, part […]

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A review of the Academy Award-winning film “Parasite”

February 10th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

I saw this South Korean work just hours before it won four Academy Awards making it the first non-English language film to win Best Picture in the 92 years of the Oscars. Impressive though “Parasite” is, I’m not sure that it’s quite that good. I would probably have made different choices for Best Picture (“Joker”), Best Director […]

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A review of “The Secret Commonwealth” by Philip Pullman

February 5th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

This is the second part of the trilogy “The Book Of Dust”, following the original trilogy of “His Dark Materials”. This novel is a sequel to the first three, set some 10 years after them and therefore some 20 years after “La Belle Sauvage” which was the first part of “The Book Of Dust”. The […]

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A review of the latest Clint Eastwood film “Richard Jewell”

February 4th, 2020 by Roger Darlington

I’m not sure how well this film will do outside the United States since the titular name will be unfamiliar to non-Americans. Jewell was a security guard at a concert celebrating the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta when he spotted a suspicious backpack and managed to have most of the nearby spectators cleared from the […]

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