A discussion of a dozen or so formative movies, mostly from the 1970s. A hugely entertaining blend of opinion, anecdote, and autobiography explaining how and why genre movies of the 70s (and cinemagoing) are fundamental to the director‘s approach to cinema. A little bit like the first half of Stephen King‘s On Writing: key context for a pop culture maven.
Photographs of decommissioned cinemas, mostly sited in the north of England. Charming, elegiac, and melancholy in equal measure, offering a glimpse of the luxury of classic Odeons, of the turn to bingo to keep these buildings alive, and of workplaces and ways of life left behind. Recommended.
The prison diaries of a fraudster, focusing on an initial nine months in HMP Wandsworth. A privileged perspective as the author notes (a middle-class documentarian), but a vivid account nevertheless, evidencing the UK penal system as chronically underfunded, dysfunctional, and counter-productive towards rehabilitation. Darkly funny throughout, though more focus on the regime mechanics would have been interesting.
The 9/11 report, distilled into a graphic novel. Excellent summary of the report, offering clarity and comprehensibility into timelining the events leading up to 9/11, into what went wrong, ongoing failures of national security, and from that what needs to be done to make different agencies work together. It’d be fascinating to read an updated version.
A monograph discussing the 2013 Doctor Who 50th anniversary special. An engaging and freewheeling exploration, too, probing the episode’s links to wider Who canon, its storytelling approach, and to the ways it exemplifies a postmodern attitude to story. By no means the final word on the episode, but Stuart offers plenty to think about, and makes some interesting connections.