Monday, 24 September 2012

The Finest Wine available to Humanity.

I'll get straight to the point and say that I am going to write about my favourite film, this gives the people who don't want to hear my opinion the chance to go read another blog and not waste any more time reading this one.

Have they gone? Good, I never liked them anyway.

So my favourite film of all time is Withnail and I.  Released in 1987 it was a box office failure (a bit like the new Dredd movie out at the moment which is a shame because it is great).  Despite the lack of interest shown on it's theatrical release it gained a strong cult following on video via word of mouth and has since been hailed as a classic British film.

Set in 1969 it tells the story of two out of work actors sharing a crappy London flat who spend most of the time trying to get out drunk or stoned and complaining about their lack of work or being cold.
They decide to get out of the city and persuade Withnail's gay Uncle Monty to let them use his cottage up in the Lake District.

I won't give away anymore of the story as I would urge you to see this film.  Withnail is played brilliantly by Richard E Grant in his first film role, all the more surprising is that Grant does not drink yet manages to convince he is almost constantly inebriated with a wild-eyed furious performance.

Paul McGann plays the everyman character of I (you never hear his name mentioned although in the credits he is called Marwood) and is the foil of Withnail's manipulative scheming.  The rest of the characters are excellent, Danny the Dealer, Jake the Poacher and the unforgettable Uncle Monty, played by Richard Griffiths in probably his best ever role, and they all look as though they are enjoying themselves immensely.

There are hardly any women in the film I'm afraid, this is blokey film about blokes doing blokey stuff but don't let that put you off, the dialogue is legendary and almost every line in the film is quotable, here is a small sample:

Withnail: I've some extremely distressing news. 
Marwood: I don't want to hear it. I don't want to hear anything. Oh God, it's a nightmare, I tell you, it's a nightmare. 
Withnail: We just ran out of wine. What are we gonna do about it? 
Marwood: I don't know, I don't know. Oh God, I don't feel good. My thumbs have gone weird! I'm in the middle of a bloody overdose! Oh God. My heart's beating like a fucked clock! I feel dreadful, I feel really dreadful! 
Withnail: So do I, so does everybody. Look at my tongue, it's wearing a yellow sock. Sit down for Christ's sake, what's the matter with you? Eat some sugar. 

Even if you don't watch the film you can google 'Withnail and I quotes' and see just how the script crackles with energy and humour.
The film has gained such a cult following now that many students play the 'Withnail Drinking Game' in which they have to watch the film and match Withnail drink for drink.  This is impossible to do as fairly early in the film he drinks lighter fluid and throws up, the game usually ends at this point.

And to top everything off the ending has the saddest break-up of a bromance I've ever seen on screen, with Withnail staring sadly at the wolves in London Zoo while quoting from Hamlet.

This is one of those films that every now and then I will settle down with a nice bottle of red and stick it on the telly.  It never gets boring even though I know it word for word and it reminds me of when I shared a flat in London with a mate.

So do yourself a favour and watch this movie, you don't need to thank me.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Angry Planet

Blimey, it's getting hot in here. September appears to be the season of seething rage with people getting themselves into a lather for various reasons.

Thousands of Muslims are enraged over a film that the media daren't mention the title of for fear of  upsetting them even more. Although with diplomats being murdered and embassies being stormed and set on fire I don't think that is possible.

A French gossip rag has published pictures of Kate Middleton topless on holiday and the British media are all madder than a a box of arseholes and invoking the ghost of Diana.

The families of the 96 football fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster 23 years ago are up in arms with my boss after an inquiry revealed that the police may have altered statements.

And here I am being all flippant and glib and wishing that people wouldn't take themselves so seriously.  We are on a tiny planet in a universe so vast we can't imagine it, the law of averages states there must be other live out there.  There are too many stars and planets for us to be the only life in the universe. Yet we think we are so important and serious.

It's easy for me to sit here in my nice house with my nice life and tell people to calm down but if we keep going down this route we aren't going to make it.

Have a nice weekend.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Mrs Van Helsing

Quite a few years ago, a beautiful girl left her home in England aged 18 and went on a big adventure.  She went to work in Germany, all by herself because she was very brave.

A year later she returned to England and found work with a company in a big city. She moved into a scruffy house that was shared by other people who all worked for the same company.These people all shared the kitchen and living room and would sit on the worn out sofa bickering over what to watch on the TV or whose turn it was to clean the kitchen.  Despite this they all got on well with each other.

One of these people was a man who had returned from his own big adventure in America and London.  He had messy hair, wore Slayer t-shirts, smoked and drank too much and lacked direction.  He was smitten by the beautiful girl but lacked the confidence to tell her.

For some reason, the beautiful girl found this shambles of a man attractive and on a works night out she asked him to dance in a night club and kissed him on the dance floor.  They started to go out together and as they got to know each other realised they had fallen in love.  When she told the man she loved him they were standing on the roof of the Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic City, she certainly knew how to pick a good venue.

Today Mr and Mrs Van Helsing are celebrating their 10th Wedding Anniversary.  She is the greatest person that he has ever met, grows more beautiful each year and he is so in love with her that it overflows his heart.

I just wanted you to know how much she means to me.