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The Bar Review: The Bowling Green

From the outside, The Bowling Green looks a little run down; as you walk up Blackboy road it can feel a little like the road to nowhere, with town behind you. Yet, as you step inside, any doubts should be overridden by the warm, hospitable atmosphere. This is one of the only pubs I know where you can sip your pint as you sit ensconced in a sofa, warmed by a fire (and as the other pub I can think of is about double the price, I know which one I would choose). In essence, it acts like a true public house should, as a place to relax, enjoy and socialise. Continue reading The Bar Review: The Bowling Green

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Review: Find Me by André Aciman

Find Me is not your normal sequel. It does not carry on a single narrative thread, started in Call Me By Your Name, instead it ties together multiple threads from the same fabric that Call Me By Your Name is a part of. (I am assuming here that you have read Call Me By Your Name, or at least seen the film, for without this you will not understand Find Me, nor this review of it.) For the first hundred pages, Elio is scarcely mentioned, Oliver not at all; yet without a doubt, Find Me is heavily predicated on the events of Call Me By Your Name. As such, one waiting to know what happened in the immediate aftermath of the previous book will be sorely disappointed, however if they give the novel the time it needs, they will come to understand the importance of time, and what has happened as time progressed for Elio, Oliver, and Elio’s father Samuel. Continue reading Review: Find Me by André Aciman

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Review: The Lady Vanishes @ Exeter Northcott

Producing giant Bill Kenwright, through the aptly named Thriller Theatre Company, brings us a tour of the stage version of this 1938 classic film by Hitchcock. Roy Marsden directs this cast of big names (lots of people from telly, apparently) who navigate a grey and textured stage designed by Morgan Large.

The story concerns the socialite Iris, a sweet and wide-eyed woman travelling back to England to get married, who befriends Ms Froy, a former governess and music teacher. Ms Froy is the lady who vanishes during the journey and the other passengers all seem to be conspiring against Iris, claiming that the woman was never there. All but Max, a charmer who chooses to believe Iris and helps her uncover the mystery. There is the touch of the international and the historical: Charters and Caldicott discuss the cricket in a quintessentially British manner, Sinor Doppo is an Italian magician, and Nazi soldiers patrol the train. With promises of thriller, espionage, coded messages through song, and a train filled with characters and mystery, I was excited to be taken on this journey. Unfortunately, almost everything fell flat. Continue reading Review: The Lady Vanishes @ Exeter Northcott

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Halloween Culture Favourites: ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Halloween specials

I love How I Met Your Mother. I love it so much that I have seen every episode nine times, which means I know pretty much everything about it. Specifically, I know that if there’s one thing How I Met Your Mother does well, it’s holiday episodes. From ‘Slapsgiving’ to ‘How Lily Stole Christmas’, the sitcom is guaranteed to keep its audience entertained at any time of year. At Halloween, the two episodes that stand out are ‘The Slutty Pumpkin’ (season 1, episode 6) and ‘The Slutty Pumpkin Returns’ (season 7, episode 8). Continue reading Halloween Culture Favourites: ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Halloween specials

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Halloween Culture Favourites: ‘It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’

When the leaves begin to turn brown and crunch under my feet, I know that it is soon pumpkin time. No, not pumpkin carving, pumpkin pie, or pumpkin pales. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown time. If all the best aspects of Fall were condensed into one 25-minute television special, it would be the Great Pumpkin. The Halloween classic, since its release in 1966, has become synonymous with Halloween, and it’s no wonder why. Based on the comic strips of Charles M. Schulz, Linus spends all of Halloween night sitting in the pumpkin patch with Sally waiting for the Great Pumpkin, the number #2 below Santa, to appear. The rest of the Peanuts gang spends the night trick-or-treating and having fun at a Halloween party, with Lucy asking for extra candy for her “blockhead brother”, and Charlie Brown stating at each door that he “got a rock.” Of course, you can’t forget about Snoopy as the WWI Flying Ace, scouring through the hills of suburbia as if they were the war-torn countryside. Good luck to you if you spend your Halloween night like Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin, and if you do go trick-or-treating, here’s sending you my best wishes that you yourself don’t get a rock. Continue reading Halloween Culture Favourites: ‘It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’

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Review: Amber Run @ The Lemon Grove

Arriving at the Lemon Grove just before the doors opened, I was a little surprised to see a relatively large queue. Whilst Amber Run’s lively sounds have, undeniably, brought them success, they are perhaps still on the fringes of mainstream indie and are yet to enter the realm of such names as The Arctic Monkeys or The 1975. But it seems Amber Run have some particularly devoted fans, as would become more apparent as the evening went on. Continue reading Review: Amber Run @ The Lemon Grove

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Review: Olafur Eliasson’s ‘In Real Life’ @ Tate Modern

The Tate Modern’s exhibition, In Real Life showcases Olafur Eliasson’s work at a scale that is truly breath-taking. This particularly immersive exhibition places the spectator at the centre of the art itself. Eliasson is a Danish-Icelandic artist and this exhibition offers 40 of his works from 1990 to today. In Real Life features his sculptures, immersive installations, photography, and painting. Eliasson’s art is often inspired by his time spent in Iceland and is predisposed to concern elemental forces of nature and investigate human perception and our collective ability to sense the world around us. His installation pieces are abstract and the message behind his art can seem ambiguous. Therefore, the reception of his work is highly subjective. Continue reading Review: Olafur Eliasson’s ‘In Real Life’ @ Tate Modern