A little blog you've probably never heard of

  1. Fat January

    January is the most miserable month of the year. It's dark when you leave for work and it's dark when you leave for home. It's properly cold, and not the bullshit December cold where it never drops below 13C, but serious, gale-force windchill cold with sleet, rain, and snow. You don't have any money because you got your last salary on December 20th and you've already spent it because you're terrible at managing your own finances. There's nothing to look forward to in January except the end of January.

  2. Reading women

    Around the start of last year I was performing my annual "Stroking of the books" ritual, where I saunter around my living room admiring my collection and my tremendously good taste in literature. I paused to stroke the largely-unread collection of Dickens' Penguin Clothbound Classics, I gritted my teeth at the irritatingly mis-matched, incomplete and incomprehensible set of Prousts, I briefly fondled my expansive collection of BFI monographs on serious, important films such as The Big Lebowski, and I stopped to feel the weight of my oversized books on film poster history and the Sega MegaDrive. I made my annual resolution to re-read books more often, and then promptly forgot all the books on my shelves in favour of reading something new.

  3. My 2014 film highlights

    My annual film highlights post, in which I highlight 20 films from all that I saw during 2014. This time I've selected from 232, and as usual the only limitation is that I saw the film last year; no restrictions on release date. The films listed aren't necessarily what I'd call the best, but I think they're all noteworthy for various reasons. I think this might be more of a downbeat list than previous years. Such was 2014.

  4. Review of Alejandro Iñárritu’s Birdman

    In 2008, Jean-Claude Van Damme appeared as an unflattering version of himself in JCVD, a washed-up film star unable to find work who returns to Belgium and finds that a misunderstanding during a post-office heist helps revitalise his career. It's a pretty good film, and there's a lot of similarity between it and Birdman, which sees Michael Keaton playing an equally-unflattering version of himself as a washed-up former comic book film star trying to put on a Serious Play in a bid for relevance.

  5. Tim Burton’s Big Eyes

    Big Eyes, the story of mid-century artist Margaret Keane who took her husband to court to prove that her popular portraits of big-eyed children were by her, and not him, is more interesting as a new direction for Tim Burton than it is as a film in its own right.

  6. Review of Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

    I quite liked the first Hobbit, though it was worryingly over-stuffed with Christopher Lee cameos and whatnot. The second film on the other hand was all stuffing and no meat, a relentless parade of middling events and characters apparently only there to pay off in the third film. In retrospect, so few of those moments and characters actually do pay off that it makes me dislike the middle film all the more.