My Scariest Gig

I’ve done a few scary gigs in my time but the scariest one I ever did saw me ending up inadvertently at the grave of Bertolt Brecht! I’ve done a few scary gigs in my time such as performing to 1,500 mainly black teenagers/young children in Croydon.  (It turns out that when your average youth […]

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Novel Review: Brave New World

Brave New World depicts what the world will be like in the future.  It’s 2540 or 632 A.F. i.e. After Ford and the novel depicts what happens to society when Americanisation/Globalisation has reached its zenith.  Written in 1932, it’s chilling how prescient the author, Aldous Huxley, seems to be. Brave New World is a world […]

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Film Review: One Flew Over the Cuckoo Nest

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is one of only 3 films to have ever won the 5 main Academy Awards (the other two being It Happened One Night and Silence of the Lambs); with Jack Nicholson’s performance in the film recently being named the greatest movie performance of all time by Total Film Magazine. […]

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Novel Review: Great Expectations

If you’ve never read a Dicken’s novel then Great Expectations is an excellent introduction to his world.  The novel is written with great wit highlighting Dicken’s hallmark skill of describing people and events with a wonderfully humorous turn of phrase.  As with all Dicken’s novels there is a cornucopia of characters exhibiting a wide range […]

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Novel Review: Animal Farm

In a nutshell Animal Farm is pure genius in its simplicity.  As a former student of Russian, I have numerous books on Russian history books sitting on my numerous bookshelves collecting dust.  But for a concise and pretty accurate account of what happened to Lenin’s revolution, then Animal Farm is a perfect choice.  Orwell dissects […]

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Novel Review: To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird is a classic of modern American literature.  Simply told, it depicts small town life in racially-charged Alabama during the Great Depression and manages to capture the innocence of childhood whilst dealing with issues of racial prejudice and injustice.  The hero of the book, Atticus Finch, is an unassuming man, a widower […]

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Film Review: The Third Man

This is one of my favourite films.  In it Orson Welles shows what real star quality is by dint of the fact that he’s hardly in the movie yet still manages to dominate it.  The film is set in Vienna, a city for which, admittedly, I have a particular soft spot for. But that aside, like […]

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Film Review: Mr Smith Goes To Washington

If you’re ever feeling like you’re up against it and in need of some welcome reassurance that it will all work out in the end, then you can do no better than watch either one of Frank Capra’s most famous films, It’s a Wonderful Life or Mr Smith Goes to Washington.  (Failing that an enormous […]

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Film Review: It Happened One Night

It Happened One Night was made in 1934 and directed by one of my favourite directors, Frank Capra.  It stars Clark Gable as a washed up newspaper reporter, Peter Warne and Claudette Colbert as a spoilt and pampered heiress. Neither of the leads were enthralled about making  the film, particularly Colbert who insisted before agreeing […]

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Film Review: Green Zone

Green Zone is set in Iraq around the time of Bush’s now infamous speech aboard USS Abraham Lincoln where he infamously stated – “In the Battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed.”  As my knowledge of Iraqi politics is probably only equalled in its paucity by my knowledge of quantum physics […]

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