Colonia, a new film by Florian Gallenberger, with Emma Watson

Tuesday, 23 February, 2016

Colonia, directed by German filmmaker Florian Gallenberger, sees a young woman (Emma Watson), join an oppressive religious sect in a bid to free her boyfriend (Daniel Brühl), who has fallen into its clutches.

Having infiltrated the group, escape, going by the trailer, appears to be a simple matter of negotiating labyrinth tunnels, and a small army of zealous enforcers.

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Trailer for 45 Years, a new film by Andrew Haigh

Thursday, 18 February, 2016

The trailer for 45 Years, starring Charlotte Rampling, and Tom Courtenay, a story about a couple preparing to celebrate forty-five years of marriage, when they receive some unexpected, and shocking news, that goes along the lines of “they’ve found her”.

I’m trying not to read too much about this film ahead of its opening today, lest I stumble upon what this revelation is.

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A man lies dead on a London street, but what happened to him?

Wednesday, 17 February, 2016

Over, a short film by London based director Jorn Threlfall, tells a tragic story. I remember reading about this incident a few years ago, as it happened in a part of London where I used to spend a lot of time, when I lived there.

Update: it seems the video won’t play if embedded… so click here to watch instead.

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Out-takes of an affair, by David M. Helman

Monday, 18 January, 2016

Selected scenes from an unreleased project by Los Angeles based filmmaker David M. Helman, titled End of the Affair.

Brooding and sombre enough for you, for a Monday morning? Filmed in Snowdonia, Wales.

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Han Solo’s life story may not stand up to many special modifications

Thursday, 14 January, 2016

Today’s obligatory Star Wars related post – I think have one ready to go for tomorrow as well – asks the question, should there be a Han Solo anthology, or “spin off” film made? As I said a few months ago, Solo’s the sort of person who’d have a couple of stories to tell. Thing is, would it be a good idea to make movies out of them?

Something else I also wondered about was who on Earth would you cast to portray a younger Solo? One thing is for sure, whoever it might be will have big shoes to fill, as David Sim, writing for The Atlantic, notes:

Why do audiences need to see the events that made Han Solo who he is? He’s a complete package the second he’s introduced – rebellious, charming, with just enough bravado to disguise that he’s making it up as he goes along – and so much of that is down to Ford’s performance. Any new actor in the role will be saddled with the choice between trying to imitate Ford or creating their own take on the character, and both will be a tough sell.

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Seven of the worst films this year… how many did you see?

Wednesday, 2 December, 2015

The biggest box office flops of 2015, as compiled by BuzzFeed… although the year still has one month to run, meaning there may potentially be additions, it’s looking like I only ended up seeing one of the titles from this list.

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Put in your diary for 2115: go and see the premiere of “100 Years”

Wednesday, 25 November, 2015

Where did I park that time travelling DeLorean again… John Malkovich and Shuya Chang star in a short film called 100 Years, directed by Robert Rodriguez, that, wait for it, will not be released until 2115.

This isn’t some joke. They’ve made a film, called 100 Years, which is being placed in a special time-locked safe that won’t open again until November 18, 2115. Why? Well, because it’s promotion for Louis XIII Cognac, an ultra-luxury liquor that is aged 100 years. Bottles currently on shelves were made in 1915 so they decided a piece of art that speaks to their commitment to quality was something worth doing.

If you don’t possess a time machine take solace in the fact that one of your descendants may be among the lucky one thousand people to sent – somehow – a ticket for the screening in a century’s time.

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Wuher: A Star Wars Story, and other films you may not live to see

Thursday, 19 November, 2015

If a single movie, Rogue One, a Star Wars “spin off” story, slated for release in late 2016, can be spawned by way of a few words taken from the opening crawl of A New Hope, then imagine what else seen in the six films released to date, has the potential to inspire? A point that’s not lost on current series producers, the Walt Disney Company:

And if the people at the Walt Disney Company, which bought Lucasfilm for $4 billion in 2012, have anything to say about it, the past four decades of Star Wars were merely prologue. They are making more. A lot more. The company intends to put out a new Star Wars movie every year for as long as people will buy tickets. Let me put it another way: If everything works out for Disney, and if you are (like me) old enough to have been conscious for the first Star Wars film, you will probably not live to see the last one. It’s the forever franchise.

I think Wuher, the gruff bartender in the canteen at Mos Eisley, is worthy of a film. In fact, I’m of the opinion that the significance of his role in the saga has been greatly understated so far. Read his profile. I think you’ll agree there’s far more to him than meets the eye.

And on that note… four weeks to go until you know what.

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What inspires good sci-fi languages? Not so good sci-fi languages

Friday, 16 October, 2015

David J. Peterson is a US linguist who creates languages for a job. If you’ve ever tuned into Game of Thrones, then you’d be familiar with his work. It was a scene from Return of the Jedi however, that inspired Peterson’s interest in languages though:

The part that always struck me is this weird kind of language that Leia is speaking. She basically says several of the same things twice, and they mean different things each time. The first time, she’s saying, “Yaté, yaté, yotó.” And that means something like, she’s coming to sell the Wookiee. Then the next time, she says, “Yotó. Yotó.” It’s exactly the same word as the last one from the previous one, but now it means that she’s demanding 50,000, no less, after Jabba’s offered her 25,000 – which is a really bizarre way for a language to work.

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A goal tracker that fines you for failure to achieve, and other links

Friday, 25 September, 2015

Working at a motel in a small town can be tedious sometimes, especially if you’re a teenager. How to liven things up then? Spy on the guests, of course. That’s what happens in Blood Pulls A Gun, the latest short film from Sydney based film director Ben Briand. Via Hypnophant.

How many ways are there to tie shoelaces? Two? Four? Seven? At least eighteen, according to Ian Fieggen, who also includes instructions as to how to tie each and every one. Check out the special purpose knots for occasions such as Halloween.

It’s best things like this do not go unquestioned… the holes at the centre of donuts, or doughnuts, have been shrinking, or at least are far smaller than they once used to be. Now why would that be? Vox is on the case though:

Smithsonian’s history of the donut provides a comprehensive look at the food, and from it we can draw a few guesses about why donut holes shrank. Donut holes are shrouded in legend, but they probably exist to help fry the donut more evenly – without a hole, the center of the donut would end up more raw than the outside.

The problem with conventional “strong” passwords, that should include letters, numbers, uppercase and special characters, is the difficulty in remembering them. The people at xkcd have a better idea for devising secure passwords, that are also a lot easier to remember, in that they adopt what I call a story format. The thing is, how many systems will actually allow their use?

Photo by Agne Gintalaite

Lithuanian artist and photographer Agne Gintalaite doesn’t just see a garage door, she sees but part of a colour palette, and went about photographing, from what I can gather, two hundred doors, for a series called Beauty Remains. See more images here.

The speed of light is the ultimate speed limit of the universe, at least as far as we understand the cosmos at present. In a vacuum, light moves at 299,792.458 kilometres per second. That’s pretty swift. But why does light move at that particular speed? Why not faster, why not slower? That, as it happens, is a very good question…

A further breakthrough came in 1905, when Albert Einstein showed that c, the speed of light through a vacuum, is the universal speed limit. According to his special theory of relativity, nothing can move faster. So, thanks to Maxwell and Einstein, we know that the speed of light is connected with a number of other (on the face of it, quite distinct) phenomena in surprising ways. But neither theory fully explains what determines that speed. What might? According to new research, the secret of c can be found in the nature of empty space.

Anthophobia is a morbid dislike, or fear of flowers. Buy why would anyone be afraid of flowers? Well, if they were ever to rise up, and attempt to subdue us, then there might be something to worry about, an idea that is explored by Valentin Petit, in a short film titled Anthophobia.

Follow these seven simple steps and you too may have a creative breakthrough. Actually the process may not be quite that straightforward, but hopefully it will help set you along the path towards whatever goal you are seeking.

And on the subject of creative breakthroughs and achieving goals, being focused, and having sort of accountability mechanism is vital. For assistance in that regard, look no further than Go Fucking Do It, which allows you to submit a task or goal, a deadline, and then a monetary fine, if you fail to achieve what you set out to do. How does that sound?

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