TV: The Bridge Review

February 27, 2015

There are people out there who won’t give subtitled television a chance.

The idea is that you’d be ‘reading’ rather than ‘watching’ the TV.

And while I can understand that, I’d suggest that you’re missing out on some cracking shows if that is how you think.bridge

Take The Bridge for example.

A joint Danish and Swedish effort, this is a crime drama that has so far run for two seasons since 2011.

And it’s brilliant.

Season One deals with a cross-border serial killer whose style is to bring some of society’s inequalities to the surface (i.e. he kills homeless people to emphasise how society doesn’t care about them etc).

Season Two concerns eco-terrorism.

Both run for an engaging 10 episodes each and have plots that neither outstay their welcome nor leave anything out. Everything and everyone in the show is in it for a reason, and all story-arcs are fully explored.

What I would say is best out it though is the way the two lead characters – the socially unaware Aspergers-suffering Swedish detective, Saga Noren and the friendly and emotional Danish cop, Martin Rohde – are written and performed.

Both characters work so well together, and Noren especially (played superbly by Sofia Helin) is just a revelation. I don’t think I’ve seen anyone like her in TV before, at least not in a lead role. It’s her bluntness and inability to understand how some of the things she says and does aren’t ‘socially acceptable’ (such as openly discussing her sex life or misreading sarcasm) that make her such a joy to watch.

And that’s the key here. You soon forget that you are reading subtitles and just become engrossed in each episode.

Without question, this is a show you’ll want to watch, and you can find it on NetFlix if it does interest you.

I can’t wait until Season 3!

 

 

Did You Know I Have A Book Out?

I’ve just released my second book – Stuart Reviews Doctor Who: Book Two – The Modern Era.

You can find out more about that here.


Stuart Reviews Doctor Who – Book Two: The Modern Era Now Available

February 26, 2015

Hi guys,SG_Cvr_04

Just an update to let you know that at long last, Stuart Reviews Doctor Who – Book Two: The Modern Era is now available on Amazon. Prices vary in different markets depending upon exchange rates, but it hovers around the $9.50/£6.50 region.

You can buy it to use on any smartphone, tablet or ebook reader.

For anyone who doesn’t want to buy from Amazon, perhaps because of geographical restrictions, you can buy a PDF to use on any device directly from me and pay through Paypal. Just get in touch either through the blog or through the Stuart Reviews Stuff Facebook site for more info on that.

The book deals with reviews from Rose through to Last Christmas and also contains the Stuart Reviews Doctor Who ‘Colossal 258’, ranking all the Doctor Who stories from worst to best.SG_Cvr_03

Spoiler Alert: As a random example, The Long Game is ranked #194.

If you’ve followed the blog over the years, I’m sure you’ll be interested to see how my own personal rankings differ from the flavour of the month style rankings by fandom in the Doctor Who Magazine.

At the same time as launching the second book, I’ve also gone back to Book One and sorted out some of the niggling formatting issues and any errors/spelling mistakes that people have pointed out to me. If you’ve already bought the book, you’ll be able to get an updated version through Amazon.

So I hope you buy it, and if you enjoy it, please leave a review on Amazon.

The links to the books are…

Book One
Book Two

and for the US Store…

Book One
Book Two

Cheers,

Stuart Milne

 

 


Movies – Selma Review (or “Watch As Oprah Winfrey Abuses Her Producership”)

February 14, 2015

To start this review of Selma with a wee blurb about my opinions on the genre of biopics would simply be retreading over old ground; ground that I only recently covered in my Theory of Everything review.

So I won’t.

Instead I will forgo my usual format to simply state that I found it an interesting and well acted, but not necessarily entertaining movie. Selma_poster

To learn about an issue is one thing, but it doesn’t necessarily make for must-see viewing, and I think that’s the problem here.

Or is it?

Perhaps Selma isn’t meant to entertain, but rather – 50 years on from the historically significant events of the march in that unassuming Alabama town – to inform those who never knew, or remind those who may have forgotten.

Because while American shouts from the rooftops about how it’s the greatest country on the planet, those boasts are juxtaposed against the sheer ignorance of its society back in those days (and possibly even now). It also should make people begin to understand why there is still tension to this day in areas of the country, as we saw recently in Ferguson.

Away from the story and message of the movie, the main thing that stuck out for me was the egotism of Oprah Winfrey, who – despite playing a character who was no more than an extra and played zero part in the unfolding of events – ensured she appeared on screen as much as possible. She felt like an extra who was trying to steal the spotlight with the help of the director.

That bugged me; it really did.

So Should You Go To See Selma?

As biopics go, I’d say there are more entertaining ones out there, not least the recent and aforementioned Theory of Everything.

But Selma carries with it a weighty message and an important history lesson that plenty of people in my generation and younger – outwith the US at least – should be made aware of.

Just don’t expect a rollercoaster of a plot along the way.