Arts & Culture
The Dictator (27th May, The Coronet)
Hands up: I laughed, despite an almost-empty cinema. It was a relief to watch a Sacha Baron Cohen film without having to endure the usual “that scene was staged!” \ “no it wasn’t!” back and forth, and although this isn’t anything very clever, it’s still a perfectly enjoyable silly caper. Irrelevant Top Tip: watch it after some frozen yoghurt:
So I did half a GCSE in Drama before quitting to spend more time in the IT office (and making sure my blog was white-listed by the school’s filtering software as an educational resource – so time well spent). However, I do dimly remember lots of talk about monologues and split scenes: well, GCSE Drama teachers, this is the play to take your kids to. Two actors, speaking only to the audience in turn, performing a story of sibling separation – I was absorbed throughout.
Men In Black III (3rd June, Westfield)
I was just the right age for Men In Black to be the coolest film ever, and even the squeal was fun (if considerably less awesome). Well, this sits pretty successfully somewhere between the two, but in any case there was no way that Tash, Katie or I were going to pass up on the chance to sit with insanely overpriced hot dogs and return to the world of the Men In Black. And try to ignore how old they look now…
Francesca Martinez: What The **** Is Normal?! (6th June, The Tricycle)
Supported by Richard Herring on the night we saw her, which was a bonus. Funny (though not laugh-out-loud continuously funny – a pretty tall order from stand-up) and also thoughtful. As an aside, I did despair when I saw her disability (Martinez has cerebral palsy) described as “the last taboo” in the Independent. Dear journalists: a quick search for “the last taboo” brings up assisted suicide, mixed race relationships, congenital syphilis, “dementia and sex” and population control on the first page. They can’t all be the last one. Now please refrain from ever using this phrase again.
The Leveson Inquiry (All the time, everywhere)
Forget the Olympics: this is undoubtedly the standout British entertainment spectacle of the year. I would buy the complete Leveson Box Set on DVD if I could. It’s even divided into seasons – sorry, “modules” – so that viewers can join in halfway through without too much confusion. But forget about Leveson himself, because the star of this show is unquestionably lead counsel Robert Jay. When this is over, he really must give up law – he would be brilliant at doing an urbane, middle class version of Jeremy Kyle. “Would it be fair to say that your overall impression of your female intern was a positive one, Mr. Smith?”
Wining & Dining (or, ‘Beering & Snacking’, depending on the occasion)
In the last month I have… caught up with Melissa (“why would I pay £10 to hear about the future of the left from you when I can get it over lunch for free?”), as well as celebrated the birthdays of padrelawnmower-Paul, Osbiston-Paul and Emily “to get to my South London flat, simple walk under the railway bridge before entering the dark alley and turning left” Boyd. We also had a fun night out in Camden with Robert’s Californian friend, who seems to have a canyon in her back garden, and a lovely evening at Amy’s in which there was both pie and wine.
Oh, and, ur, I may have spent some of the Jubilee at a party called ‘Jubilation’ with a terrifying array of Union flags and photos of the Queen. But it was fine, because you can always diffuse any lingering tension with the ultimate unifying tool: Twister.
Oh, but I have ended up with France in the Euro sweepstake at work. So, go France…?
Major Life Updates
Plenty of these too, but they will have to wait a little bit longer to see the light of blogging day.