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Archive for August 2009

Inglourious Basterds reviews

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CRASH! BANG! WALLOP! That’s not the intro you were expecting, and surpinglorious-basterds1risingly to me, it wasn’t the opening to Inglourious Basterds, either. Quentin Tarantino’s new film begins at no great pace, with slow langerous shots of the French countryside, and plenty of dialogue. There is a burst of violence, as there is throughout the film, but these do not have the same edge as in Reservoir Dogs or Pulp Fiction.

Tarantino goes back to his earlier work to great success in Inglorious. The funky soundtrack, the way characters speak like no-one else does in reality, and Tarantino’s love of genre and love of films themselves. It is no coincidence that the film centres around a small, independent cinema.

When I first saw the trailer, I expected a Kill Bill Vol.1 remake, with Nazis. If you want to see that, you won’t be disappointed. There are some nice, gory, video nasty style prosthetics that will keep the Nazi-hating sadist inside you happy. But the bulk of the film is plot driven dialogue, which I wasn’t expecting. There is a lot of talking in this film, and a lot of it doesn’t develop character. The Basterds themselves are introduced to the audience sparingly – Tarantino has concentrated on plot with this film, and neglected to develop any characters apart from Shosanna Dreyfus, played well by Melanie Laurent. Aside from that, the characters are one-dimensional. From Tarantino’s high water-mark of Jackie Brown, character has taken a backseat.

Inglourious Basterds then is an attempt by Tarantino to get back what was most commercially successful – making everything really, really cool. And this is a cool film – but also a long film. A long film without reason. Characters aren’t developed, some characters come and go, and the story plods on at a slow pace without adding anything to the story. Your head will go with the film, but your bum will go numb. Go see it, but get comfy seats. Your bum will thank you.

As a side note, this is one of the first modern films I’ve seen which hasn’t (to my knowledge) been given the Kermode Seal of Approval (TM), so I’m off to listen to the new Mayo/Kermode podcast and have my opinion re-affirmed/corrected.

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Written by bjobbo

August 16, 2009 at 10:29 am

Bolton’s sluggish start to the season

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Zat Knight, looking tall. From keightonknight.com

Zat Knight, looking tall. From keightonknight.com

I don’t normally write things immediately after games, especially this early in the season, but I’ve felt a compulsion to write something after that dire performance against Sunderland. I felt excited going to the game, opening day of the season, I bhoped for  another quick-fire start like last season against Stoke. But no. What was presented was utter crap, some of which I can explain, some of which is beyond me.

Let’s start with the debutants. First in the firing line is Zat Knight. If a club is signing a player to go into the first team, that player must be equal to or better than the player he is replacing. Zat Knight is not a better player than Andy O’Brien. Knight lost far too many headers to Kenwyn Jones, was dragged out of position by Kieran Richardson and Steed Malbranque, and twice in the game took free-kicks from around the half-way line. The guy is 6ft 6in. Why the fuck is the tallest player on the pitch chipping the ball into the box instead of getting on the end of it? Granted, it must have been Megson’s set piece plans being put into action, but I’ve never seen Peter Crouch take a free-kick in his career. How relieved must Anton Ferdinand have been feeling when he only had to look after Elmander and not Knight?

Next up, Paul Robinson. The same principle goes for him. Jlloyd Samuel did nothing wrong last season, yet finds himself being picked behind a player who is older, smaller, and slower than himself. The only logic that I can come up with is that he’s Megson’s mate from West Brom, because he certainly isn’t a better fullback than Jlloyd. If this is the case, then Robinson should not be picked again, it should be the best XI every game.

Now then, Sam Ricketts and Sean Davis. Well I don’t have anything in particular against these two, they did ok. But the same problem is there – I thought these two would be brought in to make up the numbers. I certainly didn’t think they would be first choice in front of Gretar Steinsson in Ricketts’ case or Mark Davies/Chris Basham/Joey O’Brien/even Tamir Cohen in Davis’ case.

And now we come to Mr. Megson. I can’t remember a team that has ever played at home with three defensive midfielders against a team of similar standing and quality. Why any team would ever need three defensive midfielders AND your average four defenders is beyond me. Sunderland had Lorik Cana and Lee Cattermole in front of their defence, and they did more work than our three midfielders did. It was a disjointed, lazy, lethargic, poor performance all round from the midfield. With Muamba, McCann and Davis, yes they are hard working and honest as Megson likes to promote us, but my nine-year old brother has more creativity than those three do. Lumping it up to Davies and feeding off the second balls isn’t going to cut it anymore, sorry fellas.

And finally, the master that is Johan Elmander. Are there any strikers in any of the leagues that don’t score for half the season and still get picked first choice? I know Dave Kitson didn’t do much last season, but I think he at least scored for Reading when he was on loan there. Is there any chance we can go for Tuncay, Megson? He was the best player on the pitch when they came to the Reebok late last season, I’d love to see him here.

Well played Sunderland, and as I mentioned before, Cana and Cattermole ran the midfield.

I really hope I don’t feel the need to post anything like this for the rest of the season, here’s to an exciting, rip-roaring rollercoaster over the next 37 games or so.

Written by bjobbo

August 15, 2009 at 6:29 pm

Posted in Bolton Wanderers