Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Ruth Wilson in Marple: Nemesis (finally!)

Tomorrow, 1 January 2009, ITV will finally show Ruth Wilson's episode of Marple.

This episode was made ages ago and has been shown in other countries. In fact I caught it on a Sunday afternoon over a year ago on Irish television. It's been delayed so long it's just not funny anymore.

Fingers crossed then...

Monday, 29 December 2008

Clive Cussler Sahara reissue

I spotted this new Harper paperback edition of Sahara in Waterstones yesterday. It appears to be another Larry Rostant cover in keeping with those published already by Penguin, Harper and Sphere.

Felicity Jones in The Diary of Anne Frank

Just a reminder that the BBC is showing The Diary of Anne Frank next week. It will be shown over five nights from Monday 5 January 2009. Felicity plays Anne's sister Margot.

Sunday, 28 December 2008

Quantum of Solace (my belated thoughts)

A few years back I was a reader and occasional contributor to the James Bond newsgroup. (Anyone remember newsgroups?) Anyway, when a new Bond movie came out I would put up my initial thoughts. I've not done that for many years so I thought I would do something similar here.

To be honest I was not getting my hopes up about Quantum of Solace. Casino Royale was the best Bond movie in many years and I couldn't not see how the next one could match it. plus all the talk of it being action-packed the whole way thorough didn't bode well.

However, on balance, I was pleasantly surprised. While it is nowhere near as good as Casino Royale it is nowhere near as poor as it might have been. At the very least it is superior to the Brosnan era's entries.

The opening car chase appears to be exciting. If only the makers had opted for less frenetic editing so I could actually see what was happening! When I see clips of it on TV it looks a bit clearer what is going on, so hopefully I'll enjoy that more on DVD.

I didn't like the song when I first heard it and I've not changed my mind since. At least it's not as bad as Madonna's.

The chase through the tunnels and rooftops was fine. There was some nice arty inter-cutting with the horse race.

I enjoyed the scene where M surmises that Dominic Greene is indeed a "person of interest".

Bond's fight with the "geologist" was good but seemed very... well, Bourne. The meeting with Camille was good. Olga Kurylenko really grew on me as the movie progressed. (Put it this way, I'm probably going to track down her other DVDs.) The following boat chase was unnecessary.

My favourite sequence of the movie was the opera segment. Bond's method of identifying the members of Quantum was ingenious and amusing. The following gun battle was inter-cut with the opera in a very arty and entertaining way.

After that there was more action, some action and a bit of action. It was nice to see Mathis again and Bond's drinking binge on the plane.
I did think that Gemma Arterton was very good value as agent Fields. As expected she didn't last for too much of the movie's running time, but she made an impression when she did.

After the emotionally devastating ending of Casino Royale it was a pity that QoS ended up with traditional explosions. At least Bond's farewell "gift" to Greene (the can of oil in the desert) gave a glimpse of his cruelty. Daniel Craig continues to play the role perfectly.

Lots of M in this movie. I would have liked to see more of Felix.

Finally I liked how the location names came up in unusual but suitable "fonts". Also the choice of locations provided some of the most visually stunning seen in a Bond movie for a long time. The deserts were particularly memorable.

In summary the movie is disappointing when compared to the excellence of Casino Royale but still far better than a lot of the post-1960s entries.

Sotherton joy as Kluft drops out of the Berlin World Championships

The Daily Mail has a story about Kelly Sotherton's medal prospects:

The odds on Kelly Sotherton or Jessica Ennis claiming gold at the Berlin World Athletics Championships in August improved dramatically last night with the news that defending heptathlon champion Carolina Kluft will not be competing.

You can read the article at

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles 2.9

This will be my last review for a while because Virgin 1 are not showing the next episode until February 2009.

I will call this episode The One With Toby From The West Wing.

Another strong episode following on from last week. Sarah throws up (from radiation sickness?) and stays at home to recover while John and Cameron go to dig up and destroy Cromartie's body. They discover that the body is gone. Ellison was the only one who knew so they go to talk to him/beat it out of him. Ellison convinces John that he doesn't know what happened the body and John believes him.

Sarah has disturbing fever dreams of baby turtles and goes to talk to the therapist guy from a few episodes ago. A pattern of three dots keeps coming up and she wonders what it means.

The main storyline concerns Derek and his lady friend who has captured "Toby" from The West Wing. She is convinced that he is a collaborator from the future who tortured Derek for the benefit of the machines. Derek has no memory of this but is convinced after she also captures the younger version of "Toby" from the present. She assassinates older "Toby".

There's some lovely time travel twisty stuff going on here. Derek has no memory of being tortured and suggests that maybe her version of Derek was tortured in another timeline that formed after "our" Derek changed something in the present/past.

Also the younger "Toby" goes into work and gets arrested by the FBI. His biometrics (fingerprints) were logged in and when the computers at work were hacked into. He realises it was the future "Toby" and obviously they don't believe his story. He ends up being locked up for something his future self has done. And it was being stuck in prison that let the machines get him... Bummer.

Ellison meets Weaver and shows her Cromartie's body in the trunk of his car. (What?!! Ellison DID take the body!!!) He says they need to know how the machines work. (Will Weaver fix Cromartie?!!)

Sara realises the three dots were written on the wall of the basement in the blood of the future resistance fighter. But what do they mean?

I'll have to wait until February to find out. I must say I am really enjoying this show.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Kelly Sotherton article in the Times

There's a good article about Kelly Sotherton in today's Times newspaper. It suggests that she's keeping an eye on competing in the 2012 Olympics:

Sotherton, 32, had suggested that she would retire from the heptathlon after the World Championships, but has moved the goalposts. “I knew Beijing was my opportunity, but people say it was my last one and I don’t believe that,” she said. “If I’m smart I can still be a contender in London, maybe not for gold but certainly for a medal. I know that in Beijing I could not give it everything I could have. I missed 16 weeks. Half that time off and I’d have challenged for gold.”

Kelly Sotherton will next be competing at the Aviva International at Kelvin Hall, Glasgow, on January 31 and the Aviva Grand Prix at the NIA, Birmingham, on February 21.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Kelly Sotherton and Victoria Pendleton at BBC Sports Personality of the Year

Again, here are the only two sporty people that I am interested in, Kelly Sotherton and Victoria Pendleton at last night's BBC Sports Personality of the Year event.

Full Story at

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Olivia Williams in 'The Ghost'

Today's Sunday Times newspaper reports that there is to be a movie adaptation of Robert Harris's really rather good 2007 thriller The Ghost. The book follows a ghost writer who gets the call to work on the autobiography of a former British prime minister. He discovers that the previous ghost writer died in mysterious circumstances.

Pierce Brosnan is apparently going to play the former PM, Olivia Williams his wife and Ewan McGregor the ghost writer.

You can read the article here:

Saturday, 13 December 2008

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles 2.8

Or "What we did on our vacation in Mexico".

A very strong episode this week, partly because of the novelty of the "multiple viewpoint" story structure, partly because the Cromartie storyline has come to a head.

John and his gal take off for Mexico without telling anyone. Just as well they did because Cromartie turns up at house looking for John. He found out the gang was there from the guy in the bowling alley last week.

John is showing his gal a place where he grew up. A photographer takes their photo an wants to sell them a picture, perhaps in a nod to the ending of the original movie. he also recognises "John Connor". John gets into a shuffle with the man and the cops turn up. They put his name in the system and Cromartie is alerted. he drives to Mexico with Sarah in the trunk of the car.

There is a big gun battle with Cromartie shooting lots of cops. initially we only hear the gun battle from Sarah's viewpoint in the trunk of the car. but this is not a budget saving exercise. later we see Cromartie in action.

Derek, Cameron and agent Ellison also turn up. Ellison wants to help and leads Cromartie into a church where Cromartie is ambushed. The effects work of Cromartie's damaged head is outstanding for a TV show.

They bury the body and promise to come back and destroy it. Sarah takes Cromartie's chip and smashes it. Lena does a good job of showing Sarah trying to exorcise her anger and fear.

So is Cromartie gone for good?

Gemma Arterton - Woman of the year!

The new issue of Total Film magazine is out and they've made Gemma Arterton their woman of the year. To celebrate here is a scan of the Gemma page for your viewing pleasure.

Run out and buy the new issue. It's got a cool Terminator cover with light-up eyes!

Friday, 12 December 2008

Rebecca Hall nominated for Golden Globe

Rebecca hall has been nominated in the category of 'Best Actress in a Film - Musical or Comedy' for her role in the Woody Allen movie Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

There is a full list of nominations at

Julia Ormond at "Button" premiere

Here are seven high quality photos of Julia Ormond at the premiere of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Kelly Sotherton news article

I mentioned before that my only interest in sport ran to Victoria Pendleton. Well, I have to also give an honourable mention to Kelly Sotherton, winner of the Bronze medal in the heptathlon at the 2004 Athens Olympics.

There's an article about her in today's Times newspaper. The gist is that Kelly will be competing in Austria next May and will be in the company of her old coach who called her a “wimp” and “weasel” at the 2004 Olympic Games.

Here's the link:

But as you will guess it's all an excuse for me to include a photo of Kelly. I have a lot of time for Kelly.

Update. The Guardian has a similar article from earlier this week, and it provides me with the excuse to include another Kelly photo.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Sarah Connor Chronicles CD Soundtrack are releasing a soundtrack cd for Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. I understand it's due out on 16 December.

The soundtrack mainly features music by Bear McCreary from the first and second seasons. You may be aware that he also writes the music for Battlestar Galactica.

As an added bonus the cd contains the song “Samson and Delilah” performed by none other than Shirley Manson herself. It was that song that kicked off episode 1 of season 2.

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles 2.7

Right, this episode is "the one with the bowling alley".

There is another creepy opening sequence. This show is good at those! This time Ellison answers his door to see... Himself! A duplicate terminator Ellison is about to kill him when Cromartie shows up and destroys the duplicate. He is still convinced that Ellison will lead him to the Connors.

Later Ellison gets arrested for a man's murder. It transpires that the duplicate appeared and killed a man for his clothes and was witnessed. The way it is described makes me think that a sequence was at least written and perhaps filmed but then cut from the episode.

The Conner gang's house gets broken into. Not only have the diamonds been taken but the id papers are gone as well. This is Not Good. The gang goes to Derek's fence and leaves John to clean up.

Cromartie gets a lead on Cameron (from when she lost her memory) and goes to the half-way house. The bad girl that hung out with Cameron says she will help Cromartie look for her to get some payback. They just miss John and his gal at the supermarket. Later Cromartie ditches the whiny bad girl and makes it to the "Baum" house. John's gal convinces Cromartie that she lives there.

The gang eventually find the burglars and get their stuff back. Cameron shoots them dead in a bowling alley. Sarah is shocked but does not protest. She finds the fourth burglar hading and makes the mistake of letting them go free. later we see Cromartie having a "chat" with the fourth burglar.

Derek's future gal kills the fence. Why?

Weaver impersonates a cop to get the witness to make a statement that includes a description of the time travel "bubble" materialising and this is enough to get Ellison released.

Another entertaining episode. I am enjoying this show a damn sight more than Heroes right now.

Felicity Jones 'The Chalk Garden' photo

I found this photo of Felicity Jones in The Chalk Garden on the Guardian website so I thought I would save it for posterity here.

Rebecca Hall on 'Frost/Nixon'

The website has an interview with Rebecca Hall where she discusses Frost/Nixon and her Woody Allen film Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Eleventh Hour gets five more episodes

I just saw this story on Variety so I thoughti I would post it here. Eleventh Hour, the Marley Shelton/Rufus Sewell show I "discovered" last week has been extended by another five episodes.

Anna Galvin in Stargate Atlantis

I've just seen the Stargate Atlantis episode with Anna Galvin in it. It was a season 5 episode called 'Remnants' just for the record. It had quite a clever little story structure where it turns out that some characters are not what they appear to be.

I was happy to see Anna Galvin in the episode. I've seen her in a few shows lately and I remembered her. She is really my "type".

That's the nice thing about TV shows that are made in Canada. If there's an actress I like in one show she'll probably turn up in another one. I first saw her in multiple episodes of season 7 of Smallville when Lex Luthor had a lady assistant. I got quite fond of her character and was sorry to see her assassinated.

(Just before she got assassinated she left Lex a message on the phone. I thought the least Lex could do would listen to his messages, but she was never referred to again. Hmph!)

I understand that she is in the Battlestar Galactica spin-off called Caprica. And according to the IMDB her character's name is Adama... Sounds promising!