So, this is a bit of a late one. Here’s a photo from Wednesday the 7th March.

I’m at the BFI film quiz. In the bar at BFI Imax. Look! There’s two of my team mates, Jeremy and Nik. Hiding behind the BFI guide. On the left hand page of the guide, details of the upcoming Peter Cook season (useful, since there was a round on Peter Cook- it’s not cheating; everyone’s given a guide and so, well, I guess, we all cheat).

Look at the next page. Faust at the Royal Festival Hall. It’s been and gone now. Did you see it?

Hugh Grant introduces London audiences to Murnau’s legendary 1926 silent film Faust.

And then, a paragraph that possibly makes no sense at all (I’ve never been good at grammar; bad for a writer, I know. But it seems to me that the most important thing is that we all get the general idea; certainly when it comes to a guide). Here goes:

At a time when brand new silent film The Artist is being applauded by critics and heading for 2012 Oscars success.

End of sentence. End of paragraph! I can only exclaim, what gives?!

So, the next paragraph, I presume, is meant to carry on the thought. Here’s what it says:

I don’t really mind the lack of punctuation. Like I say, I’m no grammar expert. Getting the gist is the main part. But the gist is lost for good once words like ‘greastest’ creep in.

I’ve struggled to understand this, and, after much deliberation… I took this pic almost two weeks ago! After much deliberation, I’ve come to the conclusion that the writer meant ‘Grease test’; the acknowledged system whereby a film’s worth is determined by how well it compares to the 1978 Randal Kleiser classic, Grease, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.

Faust doesn’t do too bad, since it stars Emil Jannings, whose name almost rhymes with Stockard Channing, who played Rizzo in Grease (Jannings played Mephisto – a pararhyme for Rizzo). Coincidentally, Jennings went on to play Enrico ‘Ratso’ Rizzo in the 1927 black and white silent film Midnight Cowboy (remade to Oscar-winning success in 1969 with Dustin Hoffman playing the colour, talking version of Ratso).

So there you have it. I’m stopping now.

mum-jasonWhat’s gone wrong with the world? The day started off sweetly enough with a family trip taking my niece and nephew to see The Tale of Despereaux. And then at the cinema my mother was attacked by that axe-wielding maniac Jason. Of course, when I heard her scream I did what any caring son would do and took a photo. Then I suggested my six year old nephew tackled the nutter. How we laughed when we realised it was just a promotional display stand for a horror film.

If you’re thinking of taking the kids to see The Tale of Desperaux, think again. I’m not being a spoilsport here. I like kids films. But this tale of a mouse and a rat and a kingdom where soup is banished is so drearily worthy it might send you to sleep. Yes, it’s good to be courageous, and yes, we must all learn to forgive, blah blah blah… but please, make us laugh at least once. I liked Dustin Hoffman as the rat, but that was that. Sigourney Weaver as the narrator was so overly sincere and… even for the three year olds… patronising, I longed for her to leave the soundtrack and go off and fight a facehugger.

Some critics have said it’s nice to see a family cartoon that doesn’t rely on “bathroom humour”, and I agree. But this doesn’t rely on any humour at all.

Ok, I feel mean. So I’ve just gone and spoken to my niece and nephew to redress my meanness. Funniest moment? When Despereaux uses his big Dumbo-like ears to fly down to the king. There.

After the film we walked around a pet store and saw a dog being shaved.

dog-shave