At several points during the film the strange trees, shown in the attached screengrab, make an appearance. The trees have such an unusual shape that they must've been chosen specifically to add drama to the film's landscape shots.

I'd love to know more about these trees. Anyone know?

On the James Dean story, the film makers were quoted as saying:

"We feel very honored that his family supports us..."

Would money be involved, perchance?

James Dean has been dead for 64 years. Digitally re-creating him for a new movie is such a horrible idea.

Just because something is technically possible, doesn't make it a good idea.

Anna Friel is also good as Leeson's wife Lisa.

There is also a collection of British character actors in the other roles. Tim McInnerny, for instance, plays the part of one of the senior managers at Barings Bank, who interviews and then hires Leeson. McInnerny plays the part as if he has just walked off the Blackadder set, and is still portraying Captain Darling.

Rogue Trader (1999)

Ewan McGregor stars as Nick Leeson, the derivatives broker with Barings bank. Although initially successful he starts to incur losses. In an attempt to shore up his image, he takes increasingly risky, and then illegal actions.

The film gives a sympathetic portrayal of Leeson, and McGregor is superb in the role. The movie gives a good explanation of selling futures, but then muddles the rest of the story.

Mostly entertaining. Worth seeing.

I don't know Aberfan, or any similar mining villages. So, I've always imagined the geography of Aberfan to be a bit like the village in How Green Was My Valley (1941).

Last night's was:
Shallow Grave (1994)

A black comedy crime caper which was the breakout film for Danny Boyle (director), Andrew MacDonald (producer) & Ewan McGregor (actor).

Three Edinburgh flatmates begin interviewing for a fourth flatmate. Their choice brings them two huge surprises, tests their friendship to breaking point & beyond.

Entertaining & funny.
Go, see it.

Had this movie not been such a deserved success, Trainspotting (1996) might not have been made.

I just watched two trailers for Terminator: Dark Fate (2019), which will be released on November 1 (USA).

I got the distinct impression of too many characters, lack of plot focus, and an impending muddle. I got that after watching two 3 minute trailers, goodness knows what a 128 movie will be like.

I liked Terminators 1 & 2 exactly because they had focus, and I could identify with the core characters. I won't be rushing to see the new one.

Last night's was:
Bridge of Spies (2015)

A talented insurance lawyer is recruited to defend a suspected Soviet spy, during the Cold War, because no one else would do it. The lawyer's determination leads him into an ever increasing role in the the murky world of international espionage.

Superb drama based on real-life events in the late 1950s and early 60s. Steven Spielberg directs another classic, with great performances, especially from Tom Hanks.

Don't miss it.

Quo Vadis (1951) was a particularly good sword & sandal epic. Worth seeing. Deborah Kerr, Peter Ustinov & Finlay Currie gave great performances. Quite long at 2 hours 45 minutes, but enough to keep your interest, and therefore it doesn't seem that long.

I mentioned yesterday that I watched The Saint - "The Benevolent Burglary" (1963), and very good it was, too.

I also watched "The Noble Sportsman" from the same series. It was also excellent, and as a neat coincidence it included two of the stars from my "beer" photo. The stars were: Sylvia Syms and Anthony Quayle (the middle two from the photo).

The movie "Ice Cold in Alex" (1958) is a superb, go see it.

Happy Birthday,
Wile E. Coyote & the Road Runner.

The cartoon duo first appeared together in "Fast and Furry-ous" on September 17, 1949. That makes them 70 years young.

I'll be getting them a birthday card made by ACME. 😃

That's all folks!

There is a great wee movie called
Stone of Destiny (2008) which tells the (slightly fictionalised) story of the Stones removal from Westminster Abbey. It stars Charlie Cox, as Ian Hamilton, and was written and directed by Charles Martin Smith.

To get a better idea of the real events surrounding the Stone's removal, in 1950, you should read the book "A Touch Of Treason" by Ian Hamilton. Highly recommended.


This is Rin Tin Tin, one of the biggest stars Hollywood ever had. In his day he was bigger than Scarlett Johansson & Brad Pitt combined. He starred in 27 movies, and gained international stardom. He was so profitable that he during the Depression era saved Warner Bros. from going bankrupt.

His real life story was no less amazing than his heroic movie roles.


Bringing a couple of today's topics together: music with banjos and John Boorman films.

Deliverance is a classic 1972 movie starring Jon Voigt & Burt Reynolds. The movie is a thriller which pits four city adventurers against some local mountain men.

Near the beginning of the film is this iconic "duelling banjos" scene (in Deliverance it is one banjo, one guitar):

Say what you like about The Queen's Speech, it was about time they brought out the sequel.

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