“The Chumscrubber,” directed by Arie Posin

Movie, 2005 Small town, cookie cut American psycho-drama, whose main focus is on loner Dean, who discovers Troy, his best friend, hung in an outbuilding in Troy’s parents’ suburban garden. Dean is one of a number of characters who don’t fit into any kind of normality, usually well-handled and well acted by a largely British cast. The pace and action are great, as is the … Continue reading “The Chumscrubber,” directed by Arie Posin

"Brothers of the Head", directed by Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe

Movie, 2005 Gritty film about the rise of a pub/punk rock band fronted by Siamese twins. The film pulls off the trick of being sympathetic, critical and non-exploitative, partly through using narratives – most prominently the mockumentary mix of interviews and Ken Russell’s fictional cinematic take. The story is, however, tried and tested. Sex, drugs and rock and roll are reeled out and held for … Continue reading "Brothers of the Head", directed by Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe

"The Year of Magical Thinking," by Joan Didion

Non-fiction, 2005 An account of Joan Didion’s coping and mourning the death of her husband at a time when their daughter was also perilously ill. Didion’s mixture of terror and bemusement when negotiating every day events and reminders feels detached at times until there’s a crack in the narrative action or town, which suddenly brings the tragedy into sharp focus. This isn’t a book with … Continue reading "The Year of Magical Thinking," by Joan Didion

"The Accidental" by Ali Smith

Novel, 2005 The dramas surrounding a dysfunctional liberal family, whose participants’ lives are sparked while they’re on a holiday break in Norfolk and visited by Amber, a strange, wandering life force who has a shocking affect on all the characters. Ultimately, this is quite a sad, reflective read, which sets off at a canter but ends– for the characters – in disarray, even if the … Continue reading "The Accidental" by Ali Smith