Category Archives: Film

Possible Career Change

What could I do?

I have been considering a career change.
I have thought about:
1. being an actress. I believe that my forte would be in the adverts you see on afternoon television and so I have been practising getting up out of my armchair and walking across the room with a fixed smile on my face to show how pleased I am with my levitating armchair; however, I worry that the mechanism might go wrong and I would be flung across the room, so I have also been practising my mournful face for those adverts for specialist lawyers – injuries4u, I think, which always sounds vaguely threatening, as if they are going to send ‘the boys’ round to make sure you DO have an injury which will necessitate you employing them.
2. advising on horticulture and conservation. My garden is a haven for wildlife and would shelter anything from a baby elephant downwards. I like to think that I am helping to save bees and butterflies at this time of year, because they love dandelions for their early spring nectar after a long winter. The long grass is also an excellent place for Molly, my lucky black cat, to hone her hunting skills. So far she has caught three dead leaves, a broken peg and several particularly savage pieces of very long grass. She’s coming on a treat.


3. becoming a film critic. I’m sure you’ll have read some of my film reviews in earlier posts – incisive, apt, truthful, all designed to help you decide whether or not you want to see a film. However, I have decided against this job after listening to the BFG (Bazza the Friendly Geordie, mentioned in a previous post) when we had been to see a particularly unpleasant – but fascinating, nevertheless – French film called ‘Elle’. (We needed a reviving bottle of wine after that one, I can tell you!) I couldn’t better this review: ‘The violence was very violent.’ It says it all.
calculator4. becoming a professional fraudster, even though I’m not from Nigeria. This results from a successful impersonation of DOT (Dai of Turkey) when his bank called about some possible fraudulent activity on his debit card. The call was an automated one and required a return call to an anonymous automaton who simply asked me to press certain buttons in answer to a range of questions. After acquiring the necessary details from DOT, I was able to satisfy the automaton that I was my brother and that the transactions were genuine. I now have all the details I need for further activity on DOT’s debit card…
5. becoming a wine critic. This came under consideration for all of a Nano-second, for how could I criticise something so close to my heart… unless it has a two-word name, such as Blossom Leaves or Turning Hill, and is from California (these wines do not exist, to the best of my knowledge, although there may be wines with similar names, but I don’t want to get hit with a libel charge and have to employ some dodgy television lawyers).
6. being employed to shut people up. There is almost nothing more guaranteed to engage someone else’s interest than to sit reading a book in a pub, as I found out earlier (and on many previous occasions). The conversation will go something like this:
Bloke: Good book?
You: Yes, very good.
B: You like reading, then?
Y (vaguely sarcastically): When I can, yes.
B: Lot of pages.
Avoid the temptation at this point to say that that’s the trouble with books – they have lots of pages.
B: What’s it called?
Y: Dictator.
B: What’s it about?
Y: Cicero, the roman philosopher and orator.
Complete and utter silence…

(I’d just like to say that the book really IS fascinating. It’s by Robert Harris and is well worth reading [as are all his novels] – history made into a good story.)

Enjoy the rest of this sunny weekend before we return to arctic conditions next week.

My career as a film critic, continued:

A very good evening to you all.

Following my last outing as a film critic (Meet Me in St Louis and The Unknown Girl), which met with (almost) universal acclaim (well, one person said they liked it), I have decided to continue this potential new career with a review of ‘Jackie’, which I saw this afternoon. I can sum the film up in one word: pointless. Unfortunately, everyone else who came along thought it was very good.
It was a little bit like ‘Titanic’ in a way – you knew what the ending was, although in this case it was the beginning, when JFK gets shot. It also reminded me of Les Misérables, another film I didn’t enjoy – just when I thought it was going to end, another scene would pop up, usually with John Hurt as a priest who could come up with more meaningless platitudes about the existence of God than I ever thought possible. Unfortunately, I can’t remember his exact words, but some of them had something to do with there being ‘no answer’ – I felt like shouting, ‘The answer is 42!’ (When Russell Crowe threw himself into the Seine in Les Mis, my friend and I were the only ones who said – maybe a little too loudly – ‘Thank God for that!’, while everyone else gasped.)

In fact, I think the script may have been written by someone who had just watched ‘Frozen’ and ‘Forrest Gump’ back to back, with a few quotes from ‘Camelot’ thrown in for good measure. Try saying this out loud with a straight face: “Don’t let it be forgotten that for one brief shining moment, there was a Camelot. There won’t be another Camelot, not another Camelot.” Natalie Portman managed this admirably, but I think she may have had Botox injections beforehand.

The film has been described as a ‘searing…portrait’ of Jackie Kennedy – to me, it was more like an undercooked watercolour of a rather boring woman who didn’t really have a great deal of personality, but who liked wearing pink and red.

My advice? Watch ‘Camelot’ or ‘Pointless’.