Archive for the ‘Cultural issues’ Category


Word of the day: mastaba

June 19th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Mastaba is the Arabic word for bench. It is a trapezoid shape which originated in Mesopotamia 6,000 to 7,000 years ago. Mastaba is also the title of a new 600-tonne, 20-metre high floating sculpture made from more than 7,000 colourful oil barrels which has just been unveiled on London’s Serpentine. It is the work of Bulgarian artist […]

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A review of the new animated movie “The Breadwinner”

June 11th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

We are living in a golden age of animation and Oscar-nominated “The Breadwinner” is a wonderful addition to the genre. An Irish-Canadian-Luxembourg co-production, the source material is a young adult novel by Canadian writer Deborah Ellis and both production house (Cartoon Saloon) and director (Nora Twomey) are from the Emerald Isle. Set in the Afghan […]

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Review of “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”

June 9th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

The reboot of the “Jurassic Park” franchise in the shape of “Jurassic World” was such a box office success than a sequel – the fifth dino rampage – was inevitable and, while this has not thrilled the critics, it will do well enough with the fans of the monster genre because it is genuinely entertaining. […]

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“A Very English Scandal” was a very English success

June 4th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

I spent part of this weekend watching all three one-hour episodes in the BBC1 drama series “A Very English Scandal”. This provides an account of the gay relationship between Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe and model Norman Scott and the trial of Thorpe and others on the charge of conspiracy to murder Scott. Although I […]

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A review of “Solo: A Star Wars Story”

June 1st, 2018 by Roger Darlington

This is the 10th “Star Wars” movie, the second in the anthology, and the first origin story. It arrives only half a year after “The Last Jedi” – clearly Disney, as the new owners of the franchise, are seeking to exploit the potential of the box office – and after a troubled production (notably a […]

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A review of the 2015 documentary “He Named Me Malala”

May 26th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

‘Me’ is of course Malala Yousafai, the inspirational Pakistani girl who aged 15 was the subject of an assassination attempt by the Taliban. ‘He’ is her father Ziauddin who, in his own way, is a remarkable individual and who – contrary to what she states in this moving film – gave her much more than […]

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A review of the latest super-hero movie “Deadpool 2”

May 25th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

The original “Deadpool” was made for just $58M but its takings were almost $800M so a sequel, indeed a franchise, was an inevitablity. “Deadpool 2” was released just weeks after “Avengers: Infinity War” and both super-hero movies star Josh Brolin as big and bad, but the two offerings could hardly be more different. “AIW” brings […]

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A review of the new film “On Chesil Beach”

May 22nd, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Ten years ago, I read the novella by Ian McEwan [for my review click here] and now he himself has adapated the story for the screen with director Dominic Cooke making his first feature film. The work was shot on location on the Dorset coast and deploys much use of classical music, but this is […]

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Reviews of my last two films: “Sherlock Gnomes” & “Let The Sunshine In”

May 16th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

The last two films that I’ve seen – on consecutive days last weekend – could not have been more different. ************************************************************ “Sherlock Gnomes” Like the Smurfs, garden gnomes make cute characters for a children’s animated movie. I missed the first outing, the Shakespeare-themed “Gnomeo & Juliet”, because it was issued in the year of my […]

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Word of the day: homunculus

May 15th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

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