Posted in Films

Tolkien

In a near empty cinema early one Saturday afternoon l sat and watched the horrors of the Somme come to life.

I have always thought that The Lord of the Rings was based on the second World War. Reading it l could see the spread of Nazism across Europe; silly me. J.R.R Tolkien was in the first World War. I know he said that the books were not based on his war experiences, but, being in the horror that was the Somme, l wonder.

The film shows his early life. I didn’t know that he and brother lost both parents young and were sponsored through school. That’s what brought him to Oxford, a scholarship and it was at Oxford that he met the friends with whom he would form a fellowship.

I now see The Lord of the Rings as more than a quest, it is also a story about friendship. Of the four friends who went to war two were killed, one returned much damaged and Tolkien returned to Oxford, where he wrote about fellowship, quests and the misery of Mordor.

Nicholas Hoult does a good job in the main role of Tolkien. He is supported well by the remaining cast. I thought the misery of war was brought to life. Is it a good film? Not a classic, but good enough. I watched it mainly through the prism of the books. It is currently showing in cinemas. Go along and see it and decide for yourself.

Posted in Books, Crime

Jane Harper

What a writer.

The Lost Man is the third novel by Jane Harper and l have now read all three. Starting with The Dry and then moving on to Force of Nature, l have been blown away by the great storylines, quality of writing and brilliant use of the Australian landscape. The landscape is integral to each story and Jane Harper uses it with the same skill as Tim Winton (another Australian writer whom l admire).

The Dry introduces the reader to Aaron Falk, a Federal Police Officer who returns to his hometown to investigate a multiple murder. This was the standout first novel by Jane Harper and it’s a great read.

Force of Nature is another crime that involves Aaron Falk. It is completely different from the first story, but, again, a real page turner. A group of women are missing in a National Park and Falk is sent to help find them.

The Lost Man is a stand alone novel that involves the death of a man from dehydration in Central Queensland. He is the middle of three brothers and the circumstances of his death are mysterious. Another great read.

I will keep reading Jane Harper books. She is a very talented writer who comes up with original ideas and turns them into well written books. The storylines flow with ease, her use of language and sentence structure sound and the story keeps the reader engaged until the very end.

I highly recommend all three novels. Start as l did, with The Dry and then Force of Nature before reading The Lost Man.

I hope you enjoy them as much as l did:)

Posted in Films

Rocket Man

Rocketman is the story of Elton John’s life. This is an authorised version of his life, so it is told from his point of view.

Back when he was Reggie Dwight he showed great musical ability. The young actor playing him, Kit Connor, is good as is the actor who plays him in later life, Taron Egerton. Stephen Graham plays Dick James to a tee and Bryce Dallas Howard also shines as Sheila Eileen. In fact, the performances overall are good and yet, l have to be honest and say l didn’t enjoy it as much as Bohemian Rhapsody.

If you love Elton John’s music this is the film for you. It is the music that is the stand out star of the film. Elton John and Bernie Taupin created classics that still sound great today. Listen to the man himself sing Rocket Man at Royal Festival Hall back in the 70’s.

Posted in Life

Missing in action

I’ve been missing in action from this site for quite a few weeks.

The past 7 weeks have been go, go, go with work and training and l’ve been tired. Not much good for the arts loving life, but hey, l have to pay for all those tickets somehow. That’s not to say that l haven’t been reading and l’ve also been catching up on some great tv series from Russia and Germany.

More on all that in the coming weeks, and, my first show is next week, plus l’m seeing a film this weekend and l have discovered a brilliant new ( to me) author. I’ll be telling you all about Jane Harper next week.

It’s cold, miserable and dark by 5.30pm and my 3 month feast of the arts is about to begin.

Bring it on.

Posted in Uncategorized

I’m a patron

I’m sitting here looking at my noticeboard. There are tickets pinned up for the coming 3 months. Six shows, yes, six shows and what a variety. Musical theatre, theatre, ballet, opera and comedy.

Being a patron means supporting something. In my case it’s the arts, especially suburban arts. I still love reading, but, there’s so much more than books and that’s what l’m going to be talking about.

Welcome to my arts world.

Posted in Books, Reading

The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty

What can l say about The Husband’s Secret other than it is just as good as the first Liane Moriarty book l read. She is a true master of her craft.

I found this book to be Sydney centric and very much set in world of Tupperware and the middle class, which could have made it very limited in scope. This never happened because of Liane Moriarty’s deft hand at forming an enthralling story. You care about the characters and there is not one superfluous word or line .

The story revolves around three women and a long forgotten letter. Cecila, Tess and Rachel have lives that intersect through a school in Sydney; Cecila, the high achiever(and very successful Tupperware lady), Tess, the professional career woman who’s husband tells her he’s in love with someone else( driving her back to Sydney) and Rachel, who’s daughter Janie’s murder remains unsolved.

Liane Moriarty has cleverly managed to craft a compelling story around these three women which leaves the reader interested until the very end. She really is a wonderful writer.

My thanks to Angela for lending me this book. She has lent me another and l’m going for three out of three great books.

Who else loves Liane Moriarty books?