The US culture industry wants the Chinese market. The only way is through the Chinese government, which restricts the number of foreign films allowed in the country each year – thirty-four only. To get one of those precious slots, Hollywood has learned to kowtow. Now, there’s nothing wrong with Hollywood trying to nuance is content   Read More …

I mean, it could have been worse. I was late to watching the movie – anyone with young children is always late to doing anything – but all I’d heard in the lead-up was the splat of pop-cultural fans and critics throwing dung at the film from a great height. I thought it was going   Read More …

Well, I got a literary agent. Pretty damn important step in my writing career. A fundamental step, in my view. I stumbled across this agent – Piers Blofeld – on YouTube, where he’d posted a brutal, but useful video explaining his rejection process. Brutal insofar as he makes snap decisions, often only reading the cover   Read More …

Red Harvest, Yojimbo, A Fistful of Dollars: Remaking the Remake The American Western was revitalised by an Italian director inspired by a Japanese filmmaker with a love of hardboiled fiction. This is the strange international pedigree of the ground-breaking A Fistful of Dollars. Sergio Leoni, a man who neither spoke English or who had visited   Read More …

Equity The Americans have done it again. The conservative wing has rigged the Hugo Awards, turning it into a list of ideological screeds, petty revenge stories, and comedic gay erotica. The progressive wing will no doubt punch back, like they did last year, and vote in ‘No Award’ for the particularly egregious categories. They’ll cheer.   Read More …

There is a meme that circulates every few months. A picture, black and white, the 1950s perhaps, everyone on a train with their head buried in a newspaper. It comes with a subtitle along the lines of: ‘All this technology is making us anti-social’. Oh the irony. Check mate, old bean. *like*. On to next   Read More …

When an individual earns a billion dollars, they are legally killed by society and their wealth redistributed*. This killing is televised: a SWAT team with go-pros enters the palatial residence, or chandeliered bunker, or mahogany-clad private jet, and puts a bullet to the offending billionaire. In 1982 a terrible film called Logan’s Run was released.   Read More …

There’s s scene in the classic Australian movie, The Castle, where clueless suburban lawyer Dennis Denuto finds himself in the High Court of Australia. He’s assisting a Queen’s Council argue a complex case of constitutional law. Completely out of his depth, Dennis resorts to passing notes at key points during his colleague’s arguments to the full bench   Read More …

Mad Max Fury Road will walk away with seven Oscars this year. Three Oscars less than this masterpiece warrants.   The ones that really matter and that Fury Road deserves to win – Picture, Director, and Cinematography – will go to the Spotlight, Revenant and Revenant respectively. Fury Road will win the following Oscars fairly   Read More …

Hectic beginning to the year after moving back home from Vietnam. Started a PhD, second child on the way, so much cricket to watch. My writing output has suffered: it’s the worst start to a year, in terms of words, I’ve ever had. As I’ve discussed previously, my approach to writing is establishing a routine   Read More …

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