"Then it is dark; a night where kings in golden suits ride elephants over the mountains." - John Cheever

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Good budget RTS that will play on my antiquated home PC

Age of Mythology! What do you think Seumas?

I wasn't that impressed with Empire Earth, I thought it was a bit amateurish (particularly the artwork).

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Harsh Times

Another xfm competition, another film preview. This time it was at the Soho Screening Rooms. We walked in and some guy asked "you here for Harsh Times?", a question that should be answered carefully when travelling around Soho but we assumed he meant the film. No names were taken and it did occur to me that we might just have popped in to ask directions and ended up with a couple of free beers and a film. When we wandered through to the screening room there weren't enough seats for everyone, so perhaps some people had done just that.

So, what's Harsh Times about? It's about a war veteran (Christian Bale), and his friends, trying to find gainful employment and his gradual self-destruction.

Well, that wasn't much of a review, now was it? The trouble is that there isn't really a great deal to say about the film itself, without drawing comparisons with films like (inevitably) Taxi Driver. The filming was Ok, the music was Ok, the plot was as described above, the acting was good, with some liberal dashings of rather dark humour, giving the feel of a British film at times. And, well, that's about it.

Harsh Times does keep your attention throughout but at the end I was left with the feeling that it hadn't really delivered anything new: almost a sense I'd seen it before. I don't want to give the impression that it was a bad film, and I certainly don't regret watching it, but then I didn't pay anything and had free beer, so YMMV.

It's out in cinemas on Friday 18th (tomorrow). Worth watching if you're a bit bored and have nothing else on, or if you're a Bale fan. Otherwise, wait till it's on FilmFour I guess.

Monday, August 14, 2006

The retro police state

Someone has sent me a couple of public security posters - one from from Baltimore, another from London. Odd that both have got such a distinctive mid 20th century style to them, immediately suggestive of totalitarianism and Orwell's (as opposed to Channel 4's) Big Brother.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Couple of interesting articles from yesterday's Telegraph

Med 'may get too hot for holidays'

With average temperatures expected to rise by up to six degrees [by 2080], we could be spending our summers in Ireland, northern France, the Baltics and southern Scandinavia, and avoiding Mediterranean beaches except in spring and autumn...

Another approach to Fitzrovian Tuesday's favorite subject - significant global warming is expected, no question, and hey! we might need to change our holiday plans in 74 years.

Over-reacting to terror is no way to defeat it

Excellent op-ed by Sam Leith on last week's shenanigans.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Googling the Google

Just been reading about Google Base and Google Checkout, now launching in US, coming here soon, to take on eBay and Paypal. They really are becoming all-encompassing.

As quoted in Wired:

"A recent post on Slashdot.org puts it neatly: 'In a few years, you'll be driving your Google to the Google to buy some Google for your Google.' "

Lego Robots

Lego robots! Cool. Tom, John - get one for your kids, pretend its for them...

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Technology will save us

Those exponents of the Californian Ideology at Wired magazine on the Next Green Revolution, and how technology will save the day. Hope they're right.