Review: Breathe

Breathe is based on the remarkable true story of Robin and Diana Cavendish, a British couple dealing with polio in the 1960s. Their love story is beautifully enacted by Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy. Continue reading “Review: Breathe”

Review: W1A

W1A is a British comedy from the BBC that makes fun of the BBC. I watched it because I knew Nina Sosanya was in it, and seeing her was worth it.

I don’t want to imply that the series isn’t worth watching, but I initially watched it because of her. After a couple of episodes, I was there for the duration.

The W1A cast
The W1A cast

The comedy has an excellent cast including Hugh Bonneville, Monica Dolan, Jessica Hynes, Sarah Parish, Hugh Skinner, Jason Watkins, Jonathan Bailey, and Ophelia Lovibond in addition to Nina Sosanya. David Tennant is the narrator, and often has the funniest and most inane lines.

The humor, and the irritation, come from the fact that only Hugh Bonneville, Nina Sosanya and Ophelia Lovibond ever have any sensible lines. The rest of the cast were given something to say and they simply say it over and over again for 8 episodes. One person says, “Yeah, no, yeah, cool,” over and over. One person says, “Brilliant,” over and over. Another  says, “I’m not trying to be funny or anything, but  . . . , ” over and over. Etc., etc., etc. And they say these lines all at the same time, one atop another.

Amid this cacophony of meaninglessness, the three sane members of the cast say the few intelligent things that ever get said. In spite of that, a story gets told and characters are revealed.

Like a Dilbert cartoon, W1A takes sharp aim and hits the target with every shot.I was amazed at the end that 1) a BBC comedy made such incompetent asses out of everyone at the BBC, and 2) a story emerged out of the frantic babble of W1A. Like a Dilbert cartoon, W1A takes sharp aim and hits the target with every shot.

Both seasons of W1A are currently available on Netflix.

Brain Dump: State of Affairs, Ghostbusters, After the Wedding, Five Days

It’s a brain dump day. Random stuff falls from my head in bits and pieces.

State of Affairs

Courtney B. Vance and Alfre Woodard in State of Affairs
Courtney B. Vance and Alfre Woodard in State of Affairs

Why do men married to powerful women always get portrayed in the media as whiney, needy irritations? A powerful man probably didn’t get where he is without a good spouse behind him. Why should a powerful woman get where she is without a good spouse behind her? Enough with this whiney-husband-of-a-woman-in-power trope. Come on State of Affairs, you can do better.

Ghostbusters

Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, Kate McKinnon, Melissa McCarthy
Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, Kate McKinnon, Melissa McCarthy

All female Ghostbusters. Yes! To the men who had the nerve to say that this ruins Ghostbusters for them, I say, “Sod off, you dozy pillocks!” Oops, I’ve been watching too many British dramas.

After the Wedding

Sidse Babett Knudsen and Mads Mikkelsen in After the Wedding
Sidse Babett Knudsen and Mads Mikkelsen in After the Wedding

I watched After the Wedding on Netflix. The original title is Efter brylluppet. I enjoyed it very much. It’s an interesting plot and well acted. The film is in a mix of Danish, Swedish, Hindi and English. Part of it takes place in India, part in Denmark. The main character is played by Mads Mikkelsen, but I decided to watch it because of the wonderful Sidse Babett Knudsen. If you enjoy foreign films, you may like this one. It was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year in 2007.

Five Days

Posters for 2 seasons of Five Days

Thanks to A Celtic-Dragon’s Blog for turning me on to Five Days. This British mystery series, written by Gwyneth Hughes, had a season in 2007 and another in 2010. Each series is 5 separate days from a police case. There are wonderful actors: Penelope Wilton, David Oyelowo, Janet McTeer, Hugh Bonneville, Suranne Jones, Anne Reid, Nina Sosanya and many others. I didn’t find anywhere that you can stream it, but Five Days, series 1 is available from Amazon on DVD.