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gladiator wheat field

The Great unmade? Gladiator 2: A Life Lived To The Maximus

  Ridley Scott’s rejuvenation of the toga / swords and sandals epics of yore with Gladiator had everything – epic scale, brilliant battles, fully realised worlds, political backstabbing, madness, grief and vengeance. Russell Crowe fully convinced as the General betrayed and sold into slavery, doomed to fight for the plebs amusement, and determined to revenge […]

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No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: L.A Confidential

“L.A Confidential is a book for the whole family. If your whole family is the Charles fucking Manson family.” Author James Ellroy’s hard sell not withstanding, adapting his broiling, dense 1989 neo-noir of honour stained cops in early ‘50’s Los Angeles was an uphill struggle. At 500 pages, with over 100 characters, a timeline that […]

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This Is England 1805: Master And Commander: The Far Side of The World

In which the author embarks on an appreciation of Peter Weir’s singular adaptation of Lucky Jack Aubrey’s adventure on the high seas “England is under threat of invasion, and though we be on the far side of the world, this ship is our home. This ship is England.” The above pre-battle pep talk from Captain Jack […]

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The Great Unmade? Nottingham

The tale of Robin Hood is one oft told, many times on film alone, including the recent Ridley Scott / Russell Crowe team up, sold to Crowe as a chance to make a “sequel” of sorts to their previous historic rip-snorter,Gladiator.  Robin Hood sprang from an original “hot” script called Nottingham, yet the two articles bear as much relation […]

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man of steel zod

Sympathy For The Devil? Man Of Steel’s General Zod

“Nature or nurture” seems to be at the the heart of Clark Kent’s / Kal-El’s (Henry Cavill) search for understanding of his place in our world. No such doubts cloud General Zod’s (Michael Shannon) thinking. Krypton’s fiercest warrior and proud proponent of her ancient ways is a genetically programmed Son Of Steel; he and his […]

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Unscene Is Believing: Gladiator

There’s a lot to be said for cutting to the chase. A big, stirring speech is a powerful and moving moment before the climactic battle of Henry V, say. But David Franzoni’s first draft of Gladiator gives Emperor Marcus Aurelius (Richard Harris) the early limelight, with an extended speech to his troops that would have […]

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Review: Noah

Noah beast so fierce – Russell Crowe and family bunker down in the Ark Darren Aronofsky’s Noah is unlike any Biblical epic you’ve ever seen before. By turns dusty, dirty, hallucinogenic and downright daffy, it retains a compelling, hypnotic power that draws the viewer into the granddaddy of all dystopian disaster flicks. Iceland once again […]

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