The media ecologist

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Between glamour and intimacy: Lauren Bacall 1924-2014

She was 19 when she began work on To Have and Have Not, directed by the seasoned and successful Howard Hawks from a Hemingway story. Delivering a husky-voiced duet with Hoagy Carmichael, she glances across…

Media studies goes (back) to school

There was a brief flurry of panic as Ofqual, the UK government agency charged with looking after school qualifications, left both film studies and media studies out of the list of subjects students would…

Mega-sound makes cinema the new rock n roll

It has been almost a truism of television, in the discussions of professionals and the analyses of academics, that television broadcasting is a sound medium with added pictures, while cinema is a visual…

The rise of the Celtic noir

Y Gwyll, the Welsh title of the recent BBC drama Hinterland, translates as “The Dusk”: perhaps programmers were worried that viewers would mistake it for Twilight? Vampires and zombies certainly feature…
im elsewhere

Why I won’t be going to see Nymphomaniac

Quite apart from the obvious reason, that four hours of anyone’s life is a lot to ask, the heart and soul of it is that Lars von Trier is one of the great proofs of the auteur theory. Auteurists believe…
Michael Douglas brandishes his Golden Globe for Behind the Candelabra. EPA/Paul Buck

How global are the Golden Globes?

So who knew that Behind the Candelabra was a TV movie? The most interesting part of Golden Globes is the nominations for the “minor” awards. Of course, lots of the TV series don’t make their way overseas…

Cinema versus anti-immigration rhetoric

Right-wing extremists in the UK are targeting east European migrants, whipping up what could soon become race riots. New forms of populist repression masquerade as protection of a fictive idea Englishness…
Peter O'Toole at the 2007 Oscars. EPA/Sean Masterson

Remembering Peter O'Toole

I cannot be entirely sure – the building is now entirely refurbished under a new name, and there is no easily accessible record, but sometime around 1970 I believe I saw Peter O'Toole in Waiting for Godot…
Franco Folini

JFK and Doctor Who – some anniversaries matter

Most anniversaries are more or less random: it is nice to mark the passing of time with a wedding anniversary, but the date itself is usually chosen for quite extraneous reasons. But there are two anniversaries…