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How to make a Toy Theatre

A short clip from a documentary on Victorian Toy Theatre. I was in Benjamin Pollock’s Toyshop in Covent Garden earlier, and was intrigued by the designs of the toy theatres, shadow boxes, and shadow theatres that were available.

C.S. Lewis – ‘Tyranny’

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.”

C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock: Essays on Theology (Making of Modern Theology), 1970

Waves of Horror 2015 news

In the lead up to the Waves of Horror 2015 festival we are hosting a series of one off screenings, beginning with The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears (Helene Cattet, Bruno Forzani, 2014) at the Gulbenkian cinema in Canterbury on Monday 23rd February at 9pm.

It will be followed by a series of other European horror films including Martyrs on Thursday 5th March at 9pm(2008) and  Amer Tuesday 10th March at 6.30pm (2009).

All of this is in preparation for our big annual festival, taking place this year on Halloween weekend 30th Oct – 1st Nov. Hopefully we will be hosting a short film competition as part of the festival weekend.

Richard Linklater’s Tape and DV filmmaking

Finally got around to watching Tape (Richard Linklater, 2001).  It is shot on one location with a cast of just three. The script is based on a stage play.

It is a terrific piece of work which demonstrates the capabilities of MiniDV and DV filmmaking in general. As a format this has been replaced by HD and/or DSLR formats for low budget film production.

MiniDV is very versatile, promotes fast shooting and shorter schedules, and is cheap. Best of all, in my opinion, the look for DV is very distinct. And it is very rare that a film is made with that sort of artificial/camcorder aesthetic anymore. This is a shame. It is a visual style which immediately places a film as being made between about 1995 and the late 2000s.

I love the roughness and the sense of immediacy, and films made in the format always inspire me creatively. Below is the trailer:

Progressive Spaces – the Bristol Radical Film Festival

Now published is my article on the Bristol Radical Film Festival which I attended last March in the Necsus European Journal of Media Studies. The theme of the autumn 2014 journal is ‘war’, which neatly fitted with many of the themes of the festival.

You can read the article here:
http://www.necsus-ejms.org/progressive-spaces-lines-battle-bristol-radical-film-festival-2014/

Bristol-Radical-Film-Festival-2014

 

Waves of Horror news

It has just been confirmed that Waves of Horror will be hosting its second festival over Halloween 2015.

In the meantime there will be a series of events leading up to it, including the screening of European horror flms such as Martyrs, and, on the evening of May 8th 2015, an all night zombie marathon.

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Punk Scholars Network Symposium 30th October 2014

I presented my paper entitled The Anarchist Cinema at the University of Leicester last week. It was a hugely informative and interesting day, with an excellent array of papers and presenters.

Mine was the only paper dealing with the issue of film, but I feel some of the topics crossed over – especially my discussions on audiences and space.

It was a pleasure to be involved.

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PSN symposium 30th October 2014

On Thursday 30th October I will be presenting at the first Punk Scholars Network Symposium at the University of Leicester.

My paper is titled The Anarchist Cinema and I will be discussing (among other things) the representation of unruly audiences in film, including Gremlins (1984) and Scream 2 (1997).

Here is the PDF flyer for the event;

PSN Postgraduate Symposium Poster Final

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