April 5th, 2016

Pretty Smart

Movie Reviews: Becket + 2 others

Becket (1964)
The tale of Henry II and his feud with Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury (Richard Burton). Henry II yells and finds no psychological comfort as his friendship with Becket goes awry due to him excommunicating everyone who looks at him crooked. Henry has an inner void and inflexibility and ideologically unsound arguments that lead to peril. This was formulaic.

Henry yells at his mother and his harpy wife Eleanor. Huge hats are worn and this was wildly inaccurate. People take regressive positions, make draconian comments and behave unbelievably badly and stew in aggrievement. Becket is ostentatiously religious but combatively negligent as to the humble part.

A huge chessboard is shown. This was not stark or disturbing. Becket blights England by his presence and is locked in a seemingly endless struggle with his King. Becket creates shock, appalled reactions and sickening anger. Henry yells at his presumed heir Henry the Young King. His actual heirs Richard and John are not seen. There is subtext, Norman and Saxon tensions and Peter O’Toole rants wildly as Henry II. Dark mumblings lead to murder and then it just ends.

Best Lines:
“Nothing will ever make me set it down again.”

“Oh, that.”

“I repent of it!”

“He’s doomed isn’t he?”
“At last.”
“I forbid you to gloat!”

“Your carping mediocrity.”

“I don’t like my children!”

“I want no more thinking!”

“I never wash now.”

“You look to me sir, not your mother.”

“Stop dribbling while I raise you to glory!”

“An action you may bitterly regret.”

“Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?”

Toys (1992)
This is terrible.

The Glimmer Man (1996)
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Scary Books

Book Reviews: War and Peace volume 1 + Queen of the Darkness + Dark Times + King of the Dead

War and Peace Volume 1 by Leo Tolstoy
I tried to like this but it is not a good evocation of pre-revolutionary Russia. Lazy complacent people sit in drawing rooms doing wrenching laments. This may be highly regarded but I felt it had growing ineffectuality, like ‘Lord of the Rings’.

Best Lines:
“Always spoke languidly, like an actor repeating a stale part.”

“Crush the hydra of revolution.”

“The lofty destiny of our adored monarch.”

“Why, they are sending ambassadors to compliment the usurper.”

“He chose his friends badly,”

Queen of the Darkness: Book 3 of The Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop
This 2000 novel sees many characters come to the finishing line of life. Also various characters with stupid names run around being violent and sexually inappropriate. There is fighting and women constantly call other women bitches. This wasn’t significant and the posturing symbolism was silly. This was ludicrous and why are millennia old magical creatures acting like teenagers?

Best Lines:
“To each is given what he gave.”

“The living myth. Dreams made flesh. But, oh, had any of them really thought about who the dreamers had been?”

Buffy The Vampire Slayer The Lost Slayer: Dark Times by Christopher Golden
This 2001 novella is part 2 of serial novel. Its five years in the future and Buffy must escape captivity from a custom dungeon and face the evil vampire king Giles. No really. This was ludicrous with excessive continuity nods, character changes, death and this was not prestigious just dumb.

Best Line:
“One slayer was dead. But what of the other one?”

Buffy The Vampire Slayer The Lost Slayer: King of the Dead by Christopher Golden
This 2001 novel is the 3rd part in the serial novel. Giles is an evil vampire and Buffy is a hard case. This was not strangely gripping just un-satisfyingly unthreatening.
To Light The Way To Bed

Trailers, Quotes and Stuff

‘The Flash’ 2x18 promo
Makes no sense.

‘Daredevil’ season 1 hallway fight scene
It’s so very green and is it really a one-take. A guy gets taken out by a microwave. There is fighting, fighting and why does nobody pull his scarf off? This does go on a bit.

‘Rush Hour: The TV series’ promo
Oh hell no.

‘Game Of Thrones’ promo

‘Home Fires’ promo

The Durrells’ 1x02 promo

Murdered By My Father’ promo

‘The Glimmer Man’ (1996) promo

‘Criminal’ TV spot
What is this?

I may review ‘Snap’.

Organic peppermint tea - not so hot.
72% dark chocolate - okay.

Shea Butter lip balm smells divine.

Dieu Me La Donne, gave a qui la touche - God has given it to me, let him beware who shall touch it.

‘The Six Wives Of Henry VIII’ Quotes:
“Continually imagined his utter destruction.”

“There was this continual serpentine enemy about the King, the night crow.”

“I see they mean to accustom the people by degrees to endure her.”

‘The Sunday Times’ Quotes:
“The urinal area.”

“Profoundly content.”


“Wicked ingenuity.”

“Forced to speculate wildly.”

“One of the many enigmas of her life.”

“Crap jobs, crap parents.”

“Heading somewhere darker.”

“Compassionate intelligence.”

“Not one of the great prose stylists of his generation.”

“Disorientating monstrosity, ambiguities swirl around the value of belief.”

“At large in a field, shouting at farmers, a state of affairs that has him committed to a grim county psychiatric facility.”

“His full-pelt hurtle towards proper psycho territory is worryingly complete.”

“Rage became ungovernable.”

“Booking a discreet bouncer for his funeral in case a fight broke out.”

“Why he put up with so many apparent losers and hangers on.”

“Owed him undying loyalty.”

“Morally lax and easily corruptible.”

“Emotionally confusing.”


“Fussy manners and glacial reserve.”

“Cloud of discomfort.”

“Shameless name-dropping pomposity.”

“Hard bastard.”

“Violent skag memoir.”

“Psychotic pub brawler.”

“Sagging corrugations.”

“Containing edifice.”

“Product of bitter experience.”

“Cocky and derisive.”

“Importation quality.”

“Retreats behind sarcasm and thousand-yard stares.”

“A heartbreaking epitaph to a paradise lost.”

“A statement of relaxed intent.”

“Hideously snotty.”

“A gang of girls dressed within an inch of their pudenda.”

“Hair brushes are now considered a bit naff.”

“Convicted for assault after a pub fight.”



“Some sympathetic nodding.”



“Glycosylated ingredients.”

“Fail at failure.”

“Possessing the weary air of a woman desperate for someone - anyone to service her lumpy husband so she doesn’t have to.”

“Crisis manshorts.”

“Chill time.”

“How does the legal system even enforce an agreement when none of the parties to it have the slightest prospect of being around when the money becomes repayable?”

“Selfie walkers.”

“Her only mountaineering kit? A selfie stick of course.”

“All that mascara and pouting.”

‘The Simpsons’ Quotes:
“So orange.”

“Freshly pooped eggs.”

“Why do you always think about what you don’t have?”

“What lays bacon?"

“A perfectly good barren lifeless rock.”

“Aniston sad.”

“A word before you continue parenting?”

“Fantasy lunatics dot com.”

“Make mankind a two planet species.”

“What did you learn from that?”
“Lessons I guess.”

“Nutrition zone.”

“Recycled toilet-water.”

“Fake support our daughter.”

“Monumental incompetence.”

“Friendless middle children.”

“On Mars that would be a door-slam.”

“Mom’s my only good parent.”

“Hickory pineapple.”

“A series of near-fatal standoffs.”

‘Ireland AM’ Quote:
“19 for 4 years.”

‘Sky News’ Quote:
“They may not care anyway.”

My Super Sweet 16’ Quotes:
“I don’t want stupid kids.”

“I’m screening my VIPs outfits.”

“Nobody can look hotter than me.”

“Your dress is too hot.”

“She can’t look hotter than me!”

“She blends out!”

‘Wolf Hall’ Quotes:
“You expect her to wait on you? On Boleyn’s daughter? Pass you your gloves, Madam, and serve you first at dinner? Make your mind up to it - that day will never come.”

“She will not appear, my wife, in the train of that harlot.”

“Seventeen, and he didn’t know where to put it.”

“Hard to please, easy to offend.”

“The marquisate has bought Henry only the right to caress her sister’s inner thigh.”

“She can’t change her mind now.”

“I have had much opportunity to study that lady’s character, and she is neither patient nor kind.”

“You wouldn’t trust her near a sharp knife.”

‘The Irish Times’ Quotes:
“Exiled by an evil concubine.”

“No judgement on this wall.”

‘The Lady In The Tower’ Quote:
“The King no longer looked upon her with the same eyes as before.”

On ‘Hollyoaks’: Lindsey confesses to Cindy and Mercedes and then beats them unconscious with a book. Kim gets a clue. Lindsey plots to kill Joe. Nancy is a harpy and Hypnotoad whines.
Illya K

7 TV Reviews

The Man From UNCLE 2x24&2x25

The Nowhere Affair
Solo staggers around the desert and old western sets. Solo takes capsule B and gets 72 hour amnesia just as Thrush captures him. Thrush interrogates him and he laughs at his ridiculous name. Thrush get annoyed and decide to honey trap him. Illya meets an old coot and finds the local hick helpful. Solo is seduced by the bint du jour who is blonde and mysterious and into science. Solo is not cold and decisive. Solo recalls who he is and shows off his ACTINGS. The Thrush honey trap has failed as she fell for him for real. This was okay but has no grandness. A Thrush agent acts deranged and what Uncle do to ‘fix’ the Thrush honey trap is creepy and unjustifiable. That kind of curtails enjoyment of this show.

Best Lines:
“Your cooperation is unimportant.”

“A maniac depressive who is never depressed.”

“Explode everything.”

“He’s turned back.”

“Little Thrush witch.”

“And death it will be.”

The King of Diamonds Affair
There are bad UK accents as the duo is in England, again. A woman who wears too much makeup is in peril. There is no incredible cunning just Ricardo Montalban overacting as a jewel thief. This has no vigour as Uncle looks into conflict diamonds. The thief preens and sneers. This was not utterly compelling. There is fog and men in bowler hats. Illya is shot again and walks it off, again. Principles and morals hardly bear scrutiny. By the thrice-beshitten shroud of Lazarus this was not good. Illya wears a fake moustache. The thief is the disgrace of Christendom. Would be hard boiled dialogue is shouted and there were retail blackouts. No.

Best Lines:
“The penal servitude board.”

“Maps leading from it.”

Agents of SHIELD 3x13

Parting Shot
The violent moronic fascists Hunter and Mockingbird slope dejectedly off to their spin-off that nobody wanted. They’re awful unrepentant people and I hope it gets cancelled before the first commercial. Daisy won’t shut her fat mouth. Mockingbird and Hunter run around Russia being violent and then they murder someone. Mack and Fitz are jerks. The dark and creaking plot seeks nobody face any repercussions for their lies and violent actions. Coulson has no conciliatory language. People know Ward is dead and don’t care.

Coulson makes wilful mistakes. Hunter and Mockingbird aren’t emblematic roles and the script is like a hippy’s acid ramblings. Nobody searches for the righteous course. Will Hunter shut up about mushrooms? Who do they think they are? This season is a lurid turkey and this ep is really, really bad.

May is in posturing high dudgeon. Hunter and Mockingbird mock, ridicule, hinder and obstruct. There are no consequences, they get to skip off and people act sad. This was deplorable. There are behaviour complaints, chronic despair and apathy. There is no ethical remembering and the plotline makes no sense. SHIELD throws outright tantrums and Hunter whines.

Hunter’s predominant emotion is an arse. He has no moral uniqueness. Simmons needs to shut up and there is more shameful behaviour and quip-firing. People dally and there is unnecessary panic and nobody is eloquent. Delusional behaviour is rewarded and SHIELD is a toxic cliquey gang and they pathologise everything.

There are snafus and hammer faced Mockingbird and hair-gel numpty Hunter have shenanigans. This was a non-event. Coulson is a sanctimonious, disappointed frowner and he sneers at other professionally disgruntled types. The highly irresponsible murder inflames a volatile situation. Hunter and Mockingbird antagonise and have no heartfelt apologies. They are narcissistic psychopaths and ill-prepared for consequences.

The POTUS lies and Coulson thinks he is important when he is just a noxious lair. Mockingbird and Hunter deserve swift, brutal justice. This was crap and will Coulson just shut up? People think the duo is unfairly pilloried? Coulson won’t stop needlessly antagonising people. Gideon has a child (it's one of the 'One Tree Hill' gang!)

Best Lines:
“How long were you married?”
“Which time?”

“Manifest sentient dark force.”

“Maybe not everyone should.”

“Extraction won’t work here.”

“They’ve been disavowed.”

“They don’t know he’s back.”

The Durrells (2016) 1x01
This 6 part ITV drama is based on Gerald Durrells Corfu trilogy. The second and third books are less well know but the first ‘My Family and Other Animals’ has never been out of print probably because it left out the family issues of rampant alcoholism, adultery, depression, failed marriages, divorce, unclaimed children, estrangement, fraud and lonely deaths.

It is the 30s and the widowed Durrell matriarch Louisa (Keeley Hawes - who despite being cast in everything cannot act) leaves grey old England for Corfu. The family’s Anglo-Indian origins aren’t mentioned but there are ugly clothes, a pull-down, Gerald being kicked out of school, bad acting, okay opening credits and Louisa’s  drinking problem is hinted at. Oddly nobody ever seems to have filmed Lawrence Durrell's novels.

Lawrence writes, Leslie is a moron and Margot yells. Lawrence was married at this point to his first wife but that fact is ignored. This was not personal and significant. Louisa wears ugly hats and broods in a desolate bay. Gerald incurs disapproval by being unteachable. This was made with some lack of talent. Lawrence has lifestyle protests about his mother’s petiti-bourgeois banality. They move to sunny Corfu for a life of dissipation.

They met Spiro the mad Greek, Gerald brings home a pelican and the clan of tantrum throwers and sulkers have rows. I felt polite disinterest for this. The mother is always whining and has a cold, disagreeable tone. Gerald meets local polymath Theo who hangs out at their villa. Charming Greek eccentrics surround them and fawn over them.

There is a horrible outdoor loo. Leslie loves guns. The villa has no electricity, glass, plumbing or furniture. All the dialogue is mumbled. Louisa is a martyr and nails herself to her cross (not literally). She wails about being under-appreciated. A monk yells. This was not highly emotive and quickly went into precipitous decline. Gerald brings home a tortoise and their dog runs wild. Oddly rabies is not an issue.

Best Lines:
“Nobody’s bothered to learn English.”

“This pitiful school.”

“His incivility.”

“Nothing is about me.”

“We think the sex will calm you down.”

“I am astonished that nobody has murdered you yet.”

“Use a bloody pencil.”

“Taken my uniform into the garden and shot it.”

“Full of disgusting animals.”

“I’m a big admirer of boarding schools.”

“None of you seems happy.”

“Shoo away!”

“What writing? GET A PROPER JOB!”

Thirteen 1x05
Where is the media? How can Mark snatch Ivy again? Why is there no tracker on Ivy? The BBCIII drama concludes, badly. The police were sure Ivy ran off with Mark when she was 13, a belief that seemed inflamed beyond concern for proof. Phoebe is saved because Mark ditches her because he only wanted Ivy back. Elliot is dim. Ivy and her gob that looks like a glazed doughnut is back with Mark.

Tim and his awful wife have a hostile symbiosis. Why is Ivy so stupid? Craig shows up. Mark is a mentally ill inverted brooder. The cops barely respond and this was not even a semi-triumphant ep. Angus has unusual animation. What happened to Ivy has not in general been dealt with sufficiently. Ivy’s reunion with Mark yields perplexing results. He’s a sexually inactive perv, at first. Everything is inherently wrong but I’m no incentivised to care about this rather dull finale.

Ivy and Mark sit around his latest bizarrely squalid house. This was not relentlessly hard-edged just surprisingly inconsequential and in its own category of awfulness. Elliot yells. Ivy had a miscarriage so Phoebe isn’t her child. Ivy suddenly waves a gun and yells about Mark’s dehumanising treatment of her, took look enough.

Eloise does nothing. Elliot acts like a lunatic. Nothing is realistic. How many houses does Mark have? The female cop has a serious head injury. Mark blows his house up and his neighbours don’t notice. Ivy wanders around looking gormless. What a sorry end to a once intriguing show.

Best Lines:
“What do actions have?”

“Perfect takes time.”

“13 years, wasted.”

“That is why I ran from you!”

iZombie 1x11

Mr Berserk
There is a death in the loony bin. Liv gaslights Major some more. Clive is awful. Liv affects sympathy. I ascertain I dislike her and this show. Liv is all defamity. Blaine is committing everyday obscenities and Liv doesn’t care. Liv is subsumed by her own selfishness. The zombies ate an astronaut. Liv is eye-wateringly awful. Blaine is an imposition and not a conductor of grace. Liv sees the boat party video and she ate a guy. Major steals Blaine’s stash and freaks out. No.

Best Lines:
“Skewer your head with a BBQ fork.”

“The toilet’s ringing.”

American Crime Story: The People V OJ Simpson 1x08

A Jury In A Jail
The jury repeatedly and shamelessly connive. They have a sense of confinement. Ito rants. Rob extols on his misery. The jury were an obvious array of trash who didn’t care. This case was a cultural signifier. The defence makes more colossal errors. The jury brawl over TV viewing. ‘Martin’ wins out. The jury in-fighting precipitates trouble. Rob has his conceptions shattered as he can’t dispel doubts about OJ’s guilt. This ep was no commendable. The jury talk about the court deputies in pejorative terms. Barry (Rob Morrow) shreds the DNA case. This ep has varying degrees of relevance. F Lee Bailey is gross.

Best Lines:
“You just said that. Out loud.”

“Please check the tone of your voice.”

“Yes that’s actually true.”