Monday, September 06, 2010


Monday 6 September 2010

No more GMTV just some puffy new morning show with even less discernable news content.  Is this really what the public wants?  Is this really what the public needs?

Early on I make the mistake of finishing off trimming my beard at the crack of dawn.  Surely this is not going to look good when I’m finished.

Soon it becomes apparent the top I have put on hasn’t been dried properly and thus possesses that horrible damp odour that slightly resembles a combination of cheese and sick.  Unfortunately by this point I am long out of the door.  Its going to be a long day.

With my head down to hide this I otherwise get to London comfortably.

As I change lines at Baker Street I spot the French Looking Lady.  For some reason I had a feeling I would see her today.  Go figure.

Stepping into work is a good thing this morning.  This week possesses promise as I have lots of work to sink my teeth into from which I will probably emerge a hero (on the lowest level).

Gradually people filter in from their weekends.  Before long I find myself mentioning Hachi to the Filipino before The Girl trots in flashing her new iPhone 4 about.  It doesn’t take long before she is comparing this to my own iPhone with the cracked screen.  I’m not jealous.

From here I tear into a productive day.  I feel so ahead of the 21st of the month deadline it is unreal.  Hopefully I will not live to find myself having the smile eventually wiped off my face.

For lunch I have penne.  Its my new Monday dish.

Into the afternoon all goes well, maintaining the positive spring and pace of expectations.  The weight is light and the lack of pressure suits.

Tonight a tube strike is supposed to be starting at 5PM.  With this in mind the boss asks me if I need to leave early.  Realistically I do need to leave in order to ensure I get to the BFI on time but this is not necessarily what he is addressing.

In the end I duck out at 4.30PM and when I get to St Johns Wood tube station there is no whiff of industrial action.  With time on my side I decide to change at Bond Street, exit at Tottenham Court Road and head down to Forbidden Planet to get the latest issue of Dodgem Logic and the new/latest Peter Bagge books.  After years of having convinced myself that I have outgrown this shop suddenly because of Dodgem Logic I have been dragged back in as I now make semi regular visits.

From here I briefly pop into Fopp (and buy nothing) before heading down St Martins Lane, across the Strand and over the Golden Jubilee Bridge to the South Bank (my usual route).

When I get to the BFI it all looks pretty good as I collect my ticket with good timing.  Stepping into the cinema collecting a set of BFI notes on the way, yet again I find I have another great seat in the house.

Soon the movie kicks off (apparently this is the public premiere) and TAMARA DREWE turns out to be a fairly standard countryside caper, very BBC and very British, the stuff that makes a middle class proud.  As Mark Kermode rightly said it looks like television as I watch it in the hope of finally being able to make sense of Dorset and the people within/therein.

Pleasingly it turns out to be more a film about writing than strictly the sexy young harlot tale I was expecting as it is set on/at a holiday refuge/sanctuary for writers run by Roger Allam and Tasmin Grieg (who are both excellent as usual).  Soon Gemma Arterton (Tamara herself) arrives and promptly begins to stink up the great outdoors.  The return is the common story of smalltown girl having headed to the city and now returning home having reinvented herself, which is something a lot of people do but not necessarily always this evidently or blatant.  For most of the movie she is a hard character to warm to despite not being the worst person in the world.

In the end TAMARA DREWE is a pretty decent movie with nice touches but it does unfortunately outstay its welcome despite a number of great individual performances.  Also fortunately it does not end in the predictable fashion which lifts it a step above the usual Brit cinema country romp fare.

As the lights come up we all feel obliged to applaud as gradually Stephen Frears ambles onstage bringing with him Gemma Arterton, Tamsin Grieg, Roger Allam, Dominic Cooper and all the other major principals involved in the movie.  It actually turns out to be a very impressive line-up on show, worth the price of admission alone.

It would seem the dazzling line-up of cast all appear having come straight from the big premiere being held at Leicester Square (with Tamsin Grieg particularly dressing up for the occasion).  I have to concede I glaze over as I become wowed by the sight of the guy that made High Fidelity and The Grifters, the awesome dude from the Thick Of It and V For Vendetta and the star of one of my favourite ever TV shows: Love Soup.

The talk initially mainly concerns the transition/adaptation of the graphic novel to the big screen with both the original author and screenwriter also being in tow this evening.  Its an interesting description of the process where the intention was to retain the glory of the original work without being too precious about it.

As the line questioning begins to run across the people featuring in the movie it is somewhat tragically funny to watch Luke Evans as he continuously gets overlooked on the questions.

Eventually questions get thrown out to the audience and they are the usual mixed bag.  The final question you can tell comes from Paul Gambaccini as like a pro he asks a decent question towards Frears regarding the new Tony Blair book and any mention of his portrayal in The Queen.  Without missing a beat Frears fires back how does not think it necessarily dignified that a Prime Minister be revealing details in such a public manner.

Then pretty much with that the talk comes to a close as we filter out into a raining night wondering just what is waiting ahead on the tubes.  As I exit the BFI I pass Cooper and Evans having a crafty fag break outside.  They’re grounded.

Thankfully when I get to Waterloo all the tubes appear to be still running a decent service and soon I am changing onto the Central Line at Tottenham Court Road as per usual.  On my ride across town to Liverpool Street it turns out to be only Holborn that has had to close due to the strike.

Once back at Liverpool Street I am soon on a train wheeling its way comfortably back to Colchester and refuge.  When I finally get home things feel good for a change.

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