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Film and Writing (M.A)
Book Review: "Ultra-Processed People" by Chris van Tulleken
“The food security that many of us enjoy is the product of a system of production that has kept costs low by destroying wild land and not paying for the costs of atmospheric carbon. These approaches will, ironically, create huge food insecurity. This is happening already around the globe, but nowhere more directly than in the areas of the Amazon that have been deforested to grow soy.”
Book Review: "Queer" by William S. Burroughs
“The rudeness of many Americans depressed him, a rudeness based on a solid ignorance of the whole concept of manners, and on the proposition that for social purposes, all people are more or less equal and interchangeable.” - Queer by William S. Burroughs
Book Review: "Dancing Ledge" by Derek Jarman
“Oh how Shakespeare would have loved cinema!” - Dancing Ledge by Derek Jarman As I hope you all know by now, Derek Jarman is one of my all-time favourite people ever. A great film director, a brilliant writer and a man who simply has one of the greatest artistic imaginations out there. Derek Jarman was a testament to everything film is meant to be. The creator of masterpieces such as Edward II and Caravaggio, the book 'Dancing Ledge' starts off with the difficulties of making them, the funding that was not there and goes through the incredible hard work that Jarman put in to creating these masterpieces and many more. A man who had a wild life and an even wilder mind proves to be one of the most intelligent men that the film world has ever seen.
Book Review: "Pharmacopoeia" by Derek Jarman
I think we all know by now how much I adore Derek Jarman and his movies. I regard his film ‘Caravaggio’ as one of the greatest movies ever made and his film ‘Edward II’ possibly the greatest adaptation to be made of the play ever. Unfortunately, Derek Jarman succumbed to AIDS and died in the mid-1990s having only made films since the 70s. I can honestly say that though he was a short-lived talent, he will by no means be forgotten to time. With a cracking introduction of how Jarman was first attracted to the house and garden written by his good friend and actress, Tilda Swinton, this book is a testament to garden therapy and how it can help the ease the suffering. Derek Jarman stands to be not only a great director but also a brilliant writer. I have read many of his books and this one is just like the other - absolutely captivating.
Book Review: "The Eighth Square" by Herbert Lieberman
Herbert Lieberman is synonymous with being a bit of a whiz-kid when it comes to psychological horror. His novel Crawlspace often appears on lists of the 'scariest books ever written' without having much blood and gore, but instead playing on the mind of the reader and keeping them terrified and engrossed from start to finish. The story he came up with in City of the Dead has been loved by psychological thriller fans everywhere and yet, in my books, falls short in some places. Be that as it may, I have persevered with his books, not letting one mediocre experience cloud my vision.
Book Review: "The Haar: A Horror Novel" by David Sodergren
Muriel Margaret McAuley was eighty-four years old the first time she saw a man turned inside-out by a sea monster. You might think it would bother a woman of her age, but, as Muriel was fond of saying, she had seen a lot in her eighty-four short years. - The Haar: A Horror Novel by David Sodergren
Book Review: "The Psychopath Test" by Jon Ronson
I had been meaning to read this book for a while and so, on a train one day I decided I would pick it up from the travel shop along with a can of Red Bull. I spent the entire two hour train journey reading the book and managed, by the end of the journey to make it up to the middle of chapter four, or around just passed page 100-and-something. When I got to my destination, I continued to read the book for a bit and kept investing myself in all of these experiments and criticisms, these investigations and histories. It proved to be a really interesting book and so, you can tell already that this will be a positive review.
Why It's a Masterpiece...
Welcome to ‘Why it’s a Masterpiece’. This is a series of articles about books that are considered ‘masterpieces’ in our canon. I will attempt to keep it limited to modern classics or at least, only as far back as the 19th century just to make sure I can make it as accessible to as many people as possible. Also, just a quick note: this will be replacing the series of ‘The Greatest Movies Ever Made’ for a while (but not forever, I’m just trying to figure some stuff out at the moment in terms of the organisation of my publications on this site).
Book Review: "Found" ed. by Andrew Cull and Gabino Iglesias
Full Title: Found: An Anthology of Found Footage Horror Stories edited by Andrew Cull and Gabino Iglesias You all know how much I love horror and what better side-line to take from folk horror than urban legend horror and suburban horror? I found out about this book from my Amazon Recommendations after completing Mister Magic by Kiersten White, a book I am still pretty obsessed with. I downloaded it to my Kindle straight away but got caught up in reading the two novels by Herbert Lieberman that I published before this one. Apart from that, I have come back to my Kindle and found that I was missing out on some anthology reading. Despite having many anthologies in my Kindle library, I had to go to this one first as it was sitting around for the longest time out of all of them.
Book Review: "City of the Dead" by Herbert Lieberman
April again. Burgeoning spring. Tax time and the month of suicides. Gone now are February and March, seasons of drowned men, when the ice of the frozen rivers melt, yielding up the winter's harvest of junkies, itinerants, and prostitutes. Soon to come are July and August--the jack-knife months. Heat and homicide. Bullet holes, knife wounds, fatal garrotings, a grisly procession vomited out of the steamy ghettos of the inner city. Followed by September--early fall--season of wilting vegetation, self guilt, and inexplicable loss. Battered babies with the subdural hematomas and petechial hemorrahages. Then October--benign, quiescent; the oven pavements of the city cooling while death hangs back a little while, prostrate from all the carnage. Only to rush headlong into November and December. The holiday season. Thanksgiving and the Prince of Peace. Suicides come forth again... - City of the Dead by Herbert Lieberman