Many years ago, discouraged by the need to go to school the next day, and unable to read, let alone sleep, I spent much of the night flicking through the television channels on the second-hand TV in my bedroom desperate for something to watch, anything to distract me from the black moods which characterized much of my teenage years. If I were to sum up that entire decade… Read More Swimming To Cambodia
A magnificent mash-up of 1987’s big-screen turkey, “Masters of the Universe”, and 2015’s winner of Most-Grating-British-Accent-Ever, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, which manages to do what no other trailer (or indeed movie) has managed to do – make the live-action adventures of “He-Man” look interesting!
Watch it while you can!
With all the hype this week surrounding the release of J. J. Abrams’ new addition to the Star Wars franchise, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, it’s good to return to the original 1970s’ trilogy as brought to us by George Lucas and co. So here, for your delight (or horror), is the rarely-seen 1978 television spectacular, “The Star Wars… Read More The 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special
Here’s something to annoy the Sad Puppies crowd, a super-cut of all the spoken dialogue from women other than Princess Leia in the original “Star Wars” trilogy of movies. Or rather the lack thereof. Okay, admittedly Leia Organa, played by Carrie Fisher, was one of the main characters in the initial sequence of films (Episodes IV to VI). And I suppose they do… Read More The Glass Ceiling In The Star Wars Triology
Following a purgatory week of meetings and teleconferences of questionable merit – slidey-widey PowerPoint presentations being a poor substitute for empirical evidence, no matter how razzle-dazzle their set-up – all I can say is this: thank fuck it’s Friday! Another twelve hours to go and I’ll be liberated from this capitalist-born serfdom, free to roam hither and thither like Mel Gibson… Read More ASF-TFIF Brings You Dancing Predators With Danny Glover
I have a great deal of affection for Joss Whedon’s prematurely ended science-fiction series, “Firefly”, which aired on Fox Television in the United States in late 2002, and was viewable in Ireland via the old Sci Fi Channel in 2003. It was an odd but effective “space western” which initially baffled most audiences and critics,… Read More Exploring The Genre Frontier In Joss Whedon’s 2005 Movie Serenity
Salon has a short interview with the cult animator, Ralph Bakshi, who among other things produced a decidedly dark version of JRR Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” in 1978, achieving modest box office success from a relatively small budget. I still have a great deal of affection for the film, despite all its flaws, and in… Read More Ralph Bakshi Interview With Salon
In recent weeks the TG4 period drama, An Klondike, has garnered favourable reviews from across the Anglophone press and media in Ireland, gaining plaudits from even the most cynical critics of Irish language broadcasting. For a channel that has been underfunded and pilloried since its establishment, the Conamara-based television station has built up an enviable reputation for producing well-crafted dramas, comedies and documentaries that… Read More ¡Viva Irlanda! I’m Irish – Speak Spanish!
I’m not a huge fan of either “franchise”, however would I watch this? Damn sure I would! ;-)
From a report by the Galway Advertiser: “The first Irish language ‘talkie’ ever made has premiered at a renowned Italian festival of rediscovered and restored film… Oidhche Sheanchais, an 11-minute film featuring Aran islanders from the Man of Aran cast listening to a story told by seanchaí Seáinín Tom Ó Dioráin, was the first ‘talkie’… Read More Oíche Sheanchais, The First Irish Language Sound Film
It says much for the fantasy politics of British nationalism that a decision by the English-born children’s author JK Rowling to boost the already hefty warchest of the Unionist “No” campaign with a donation of one million pounds is being heralded by the right-wing press in Britain as “the most significant” celebrity intervention in the referendum… Read More Harry Potter To The Rescue!
Sometimes looking back at Ireland in the 1970s and ‘80s I wonder if the entire nation was quite right in the head. It was a truly surreal time. Forget the war in the north-east against the British, the twin scourges of poverty and emigration, the political scandals and omnipresent corruption, the hegemony of the Roman… Read More Cultus Obscuram – Mr Rossi, Signor Rossi
I was going through my collection of Blu-ray and DVD movies and box-sets over the weekend, not to mention several hundred hours of digital content on my main HTPC, and it suddenly struck me that less than 1% of the total was actually Irish-made. I have a huge catalogue of films and TV shows from… Read More Irish TV And Cinema? Some Hope
The old cliché “…so bad it’s good” springs to mind when one watches the 1975 cinematic release “Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze”. Based upon the eponymous 1930s’ pulp magazine character primarily written by Lester Dent the film was intended to be the first in a series of purposefully old-fashioned adventure movies by legendary Sci-Fi entertainment… Read More Cultus Obscuram – Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze
I’ve been asked to highlight a recently released independent Irish movie, “The Randomers”, the fourth feature-length film from writer-director Graham Jones. The free-to-view drama focuses on a love affair sparked by the actions of a young woman living on the west coast of Ireland who places an advertisement seeking a man for a relationship “without speaking”. What follows… Read More The Randomers
In the oft-played Geek game of “Cultus Obscuram” I’ve yet to be beaten, whether it is in the arena of movies, TV programmes, books or comics. Undoubtedly my winning hand when it comes to contesting a knowledge of cult films is the truly obscure 1981 George A. Romero effort “Knightriders” (note the plural) notable for… Read More Cultus Obscuram – Knightriders
Because there is far too little Steampunk in Ireland, here are some links: Steampunk Collective Ireland Steampunk Ireland The Josie Baggley Company Talking to a friend a few days ago who is a sean scoil Steampunker I found him frustrated by the way the movement in Ireland is subsumed into the cod-Victoriana of the Pax… Read More Steampunk In Ireland
Oh for the cinematic vision of “Dune” that could have been. From Salon and Andrew O’Hehir at the Cannes Festival: “According to “Drive” director Nicolas Winding Refn (who’s also here this year with the ultra-violent “Only God Forgives”), the legendary unmade mid-‘70s film version of Frank Herbert’s “Dune” by Chilean-born mad genius Alejandro Jodorowsky actually exists – and… Read More Jodorowsky’s Dune
After touring the convention circuit the Judge Dredd-inspired fan film “Judge Minty“, written and directed by Steven Sterlacchini, has finally been released online. While the acting may be less than inspiring the special effects on the other hand show just how far technology has moved on since the days of filming spray-painted plastic bottles on wires against a blue background.
While going through the old bookmarks on my browser the other day I came across the Cimmerian, a wonderful if now defunct group-blog that was dedicated to Fantasy, Horror and Adventure fiction, with a focus on the works of the Irish-American writer Robert E. Howard in particular. Some of the most intelligent and thoughtful pieces on… Read More Robert E. Howard – The Whole Wide World