Smells Like Team Spirit

In an age of WAGs and John Terry debacles, this is just a lovely short film from Puma Football, shot on the Ghana Team bus as they travel to the stadium for their must-win game against Burkina Faso. Not sure what Capello would make of it…


Philip K. Dick

Recently stumbled upon this letter on the Philip K. Dick Trust website which he wrote shortly before he died.

Having studied the adaptation of Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep into Blade Runner, I was surprised to discover he had never actually seen Ridley Scott’s vision of his work. However, the thoughtful and enthusiastic tone of his take on footage he had seen of the film on TV are thoroughly positive:

“Blade Runner is going to revolutionise our conceptions of what science fiction is and, more, can be… My life and creative work are justified and completed by Blade Runner.”

As an aside, this 2007 profile of Philip K Dick in the New Yorker offers, for me, both a thorough overview and compelling insight into his work and work:

“Reading his life… one has a sense not of a man of thwarted ambition but, rather, of a man burning up with ideas and observations who found in a pop form the perfect vehicle for expressing them.”

Everybody Gets Knocked Down

“Everybody gets knocked down, how quick are you going to get up?”

Another inspiring film for Nike, created by Wieden & Kennedy, featuring athletes (from Lance Armstrong, Maria Sharapova and South African Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius to lesser-known athletes) who refuse to accept defeat.

While the visuals connect them all through one continuous chain of motion (and hence ‘the human chain’), the message really hits home through the excellent soundtrack by The Hours, which was originally recorded as a tribute to The Rumble in the Jungle.

Greed Is Back

The Guardian’s Meg Pickard reviews the trailer to the forthcoming (supposedly timely) sequel to 1987’s Wall Street, and questions whether the time is right to see the return of Michael Douglas’ 80s icon, Gordon Gekko:

“Yes: Gordon Gekko was cool then. But a lot of your audience have been fired by him in the last year and perhaps this might not be the best time to expect them to go and see a film about struggling. That’s why redundancy drama Up in the Air’s been big this year – it wasn’t perfect, but it did address the situation many people watching it found themselves in (or at least worried about).”

On the plus side, however, the movie does feature Carey Mulligan (as Gekko’s daughter), so it clearly has its redeeming features…

Nothing Is Original

Love this quote (particularly resonant for this blog), which youmightfindyourself has now recut, with new styles “based on different Jarmusch movies”.

J.D. Salinger, RIP

J.D. Salinger, the reclusive author of Catcher in the Rye (published nearly 60 years ago) died today, aged 91.

Presumably, this opens the possibility that his classic book may one day be filmed because, up until his death, he remained steadfast in his opinion that ‘Catcher’ was unfilmable and that Holden Caulfield is unactable.

An Education

Finally got around to seeing An Education last night which, while no means a perfect movie, is a coming-of-age story like no other that I’ve seen (or read, for that matter) before.

Nick Hornby’s script is sharply observed, the soundtrack is fantastic from the get-go, and there are some truly laugh-out-loud moments, particularly from Alfred Molina and Rosamund Pike.

The best thing about the film, however, is Carey Mulligan (first seen in the Doctor Who story Blink) who is completely self-assured as Jenny and surely a dead cert for a BAFTA this year.

Sadly, given its haul of 9 BAFTA nominations, it’s a huge surprise to find that there’s only a couple of screens showing the film in London at the moment… but, if you haven’t seen it yet, make the effort. You won’t be disappointed.