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The Great Unmade? The Early Drafts of Star Wars, Part 2

Following part one of my read-thru, with his second draft, dated January 1975, George Lucas began stripping down his massive manuscript of ideas and refocusing them into something much more budget conscious and achievable for the time. The Skywalker is a prophetic figure, a man who learned how to manipulate the spiritual fabric of reality […]

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Staircases To Nowhere: Making Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining

You may recall we previously brought you news of The Elstree Project, an oral history project designed to record, preserve and share the memories of people who have worked at the studios of Elstree and Borehamwood. Well, one of their interview docs, a 55 minute film on the making of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining has been […]

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Top 10 Things I want to see from Skyfall

    10. The gun barrel   While many among you may say, “Ah yes, but the gun barrel was in Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace” I would counter that argument by saying, “No it wasn’t – sod off”. In Casino Royale it was barely there and in QoS it appears at the very end. The end?? […]

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The Great Unmade? The Early Drafts of Star Wars, Part 1

Discussion of the origins of Star Wars must begin with Akira Kurosawa’s The Hidden Fortress, the tale of a bearded General and a young Princess, both in the guise of peasants, trying to sneak across enemy lines while pursued by the clan who overthrew their kingdom, and having to work with a bumbling pair of […]

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Sorcerer: Friedkin’s Ballbreaker

“What I did on Sorcerer makes Jaws look like a picnic!” Roy Scheider Jungle drums were sounding the call for William Friedkin’s blood in 1977. Critics judged Sorcerer, his loose remake of George Clouzot’s The Wages Of Fear, filmed in the wilds of the Dominican Republic, an act of hubris out of step with the […]

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Keep Moving 007

Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt didn’t do so much running after all in Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation. But he’s not the only spy on the block who can show us a clean pair of heels. Daniel Craig as James Bond gives literal meaning to the phrase, “active duty.” And ignore that ageist crack from Silva (“Your […]

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Bickle’s Got Talent? The King Of Comedy

      In this age of television wannabes and quick fix celebs, it is fitting to look back at The King Of Comedy, Martin Scorsese’s prescient examination of the modern age’s obsession with fame, and a film he himself acknowledges as a sequel of sorts to Taxi Driver, another classic misfit story. Both have […]

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Scoring The Chase: The Music Of Mad Max: Fury Road

One of the many amazing elements of Mad Max: Fury Road is the incredible score, a riot of “an insane rock opera” according to composer Junkie XL, AKA Tom Holkenborg. One that at times fuses with the immense drum / guitar rig that powers Immortan Joe’s Warboys on their chase after Max, Furiosa and the […]

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Crikey DM! David Jason’s Tribute To Cosgrove hall

The relaunched Danger Mouse cartoon has seemingly won over a new generation of fans, and allayed fears of those who fondly remember the adventures of Britain’s other greatest secret agent, voiced by David Jason, and his bumbling assistant, Penfold (Terry Scott). So this is as good a time as any to listen to David Jason’s radio […]

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Lee Marvin: A Personal Portrait, By John Boorman

Lee Marvin was a star in his own firmament, a mass of contradictions and sensitivities, hidden beneath a rousing, ribald, flinty carapace. A wounded veteran of the bloody Pacific campaign in WW.II, a boozer and brawler, a poet and prince. It’s fair to say there has never been another actor quite like him. One man […]

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