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Audrey Dana in What War May Bring

What War May Bring

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 31 December President Truman declares the Second World War over, 1946 On this day in 1946, the US President declared that hostilities had come to an end in the Second World War. Whether this means that the war itself ended on that day depends on your terms. The war in Europe ended on VE day (8 May 1945). Some suggest that the war ended with the defeat of Japan and the signing of an armistice, with VJ day (14 August 1945). Still others reckon the war can’t be termed over until the signing of the peace treaty with Japan (1951). And … Read more
Mark Wahlberg and Burt Reynolds in Boogie Nights

Boogie Nights

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 30 December Jeff Lynne born, 1947 On this day in 1947, Jeffrey Lynne was born in Birmingham, UK. Jeff was an early starter and by the age of 16 had formed a band in Birmingham, called first The Hellcats, then The Handicaps, and finally The Andicaps. By 18 he had learnt the rudiments of the studio recording process after buying a Bang & Olufsen BeoCord 2000 reel to reel tape machine, and joined a band called The Nightriders, who changed their name to The Idle Race. In 1970 he joined The Move, at the invitation of former Nightriders/Idle Race member Roy … Read more
Marius Goring in A Matter of Life and Death

A Matter of Life and Death

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 29 December UK pays off Second World War debt, 2006 On this day in 2006, the last working day of the year, the British Government made the last of 50 payments to the US and Canada, money it had borrowed off them in 1945 at the end of the war, when the British economist John Maynard Keynes had been dispatched to Washington with the begging bowl. With the national debt standing at 180% of gross domestic product, the government had expected, or hoped for, a grant. Instead it was offered a loan, on terms of 2% interest annually, a rate that … Read more
Chris Pine and Zoe Saldana in Star Trek

Star Trek

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 28 December Birth of Nichelle Nichols, 1932 On this day in 1932, Grace Dell (aka Nichelle) Nichols was born, in Robbins, Illinois, USA. Having studied in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, she first arrived in showbiz as a singer in a 1961 musical called Kicks and Co, then went on to have roles in Carmen Jones and Porgy and Bess, before touring as a singer with Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton’s bands. In 1964 she appeared in an episode of a TV series called The Lieutenant, produced by Gene Roddenberry. Roddenberry cast her again in his next TV series, Star … Read more
Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty

Zero Dark Thirty

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 27 December Benazir Bhutto assassinated, 2007 On this day in 2007, Benazir Bhutto, leader of the Pakistan People’s Party and a former Prime Minister of Pakistan, died in a bomb attack at a political rally in Rawalpindi. She was campaigning in the upcoming general election. A glamorous figure in Pakistani politics, she was the daughter of former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and had been elected Prime Minister at the age of 35, in 1989, the first woman to lead a Muslim country. Though because of the presidential system, Bhutto was constantly in a struggle for executive power with President Ghulam … Read more
Nadia Tolokkonikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alyokhina of Pussy Riot

Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 26 December USSR formally dissolved, 1991 And suddenly, on this day in 1991, the Soviet Union suddenly simply ceased to exist. No nuclear bombing by the USA, no internal revolutionary rupture, it just shut up shop. The previous day President Mikhail Gorbachev had unfussily declared his office extinct and handed over the launch codes of the USSR’s nuclear weapons to Boris Yeltsin, the President of Russia. It was the logical final step of the process of glasnost (literally: openness) and perestroika (restructuring) initiated by Gorbachev in 1985, which had led to the increase of nationalist movements in Warsaw Pact states. This … Read more
Mircea Andreescu as Piscoci (left), Teo Corban as Jderescu (middle) and Ion Sapdaru as Manescu (right).

12:08 East of Bucharest

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 25 December Nicholae Ceauşescu executed, 1989 On this day in 1989, Nicolae Ceauşescu, general secretary of the Romanian Communist party since 1965, president of the country since 1967, was tried and convicted by a military tribunal, then taken out and shot by a firing squad, along with his wife Elena. Only the previous month, in November 1989, he had been re-elected for another five years as leader of the Romanian Communist Party. Ceauşescu had taken the opportunity to denounce the spread of anti-Communist rebellion throughout Eastern Europe. On 16 December in the city of Timişoara an impromptu demonstration against the eviction … Read more
Mark Coles Smith as Billy "Streaky" Bacon in Beneath Hill 60

Beneath Hill 60

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 24 December The Christmas Truce, 1914 On this day in 1914, an unofficial truce broke out, mostly between the British and German soldiers, at the Front in the First World War. It was the first year of the war and it had already become largely a static war fought from trenches. Troops had been dug in for months and had become familiar with their opposite numbers. As Christmas approached and the tug of hearth and home got stronger, men began to sing songs on both sides of no man’s land. Perhaps because the British and Germans would have been familiar with … Read more
Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel in 500 Days of Summer

500 Days of Summer

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 23 December Carla Bruni born, 1967 On this day in 1967, Carla Gilberta Bruni Tedeschi was born in Turin, Italy. The daughter of a concert pianist and a composer, and the grand-daughter of Virginio Bruni Tedeschi, founder of CEAT tyres, Carla grew up in France, where her family moved to escape threats from the Red Brigades, the terrorist group active in 1970s Italy. She studied art and architecture and became a model at 19, going on to become one of the highest paid in the business. In 1997 she abandoned modelling to devote herself to music. Her first album, Quelqu’un M’a … Read more
Agata Kulesza and Agata Trzebuchowska in Ida


A movie for every day of the year – a good one 22 December Beethoven debuts 5th Symphony, 1808 On this day in 1808, the composer Ludwig van Beethoven debuted his most famous work, the 5th Symphony, at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna. It was a big evening, lasting more than four hours, at which Beethoven also debuted his 6th Symphony, his 4th Piano Concerto, plus a few other items, with the whole evening rounded off by another debut, Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy, which he had written specifically as a big show-off finale piece. Possibly because there was so much new material to familiarise the orchestra with, partly because rehearsals were rushed, … Read more
The wicker man in The Wicker Man

The Wicker Man

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 21 December The Southern Solstice Today is the Southern solstice. If you are in the northern hemisphere, it marks the point at which the sun rises least above the horizon. If you are in the southern hemisphere, it is midsummer, longest day of the year. And correspondingly the shortest in the north. Towards the equator the effect is minimal, with day and night length tending to match each other the whole year through. But in London, where I am writing this, it means the sun will come up a handful of minutes after 8am and set just before 4pm. Tomorrow, the … Read more
Steve Jobs The Lost Interview

Steve Jobs The Lost Interview

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 20 December NeXT merges with Apple, 1996 On this day in 1996, Apple Computer Inc agreed a deal with Next Computer Inc to buy Next for $429 million, plus 1.5 million Apple shares. Next had been set up by Steve Jobs after he had been ousted in 1985 from Apple, the company he had co-founded in 1976. The deal involved the return of Jobs to Apple, which was seen as something of a second coming for Apple, whose fortunes had been languishing since Jobs had left (and before he had left too). The deal was brokered by Gil Amelio, who had … Read more

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