The Descendants

Shailene Woodley, George Clooney, Amara Miller and Nick Krause

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 21 August Hawaii becomes 50th US state, 1959 Today marks the day when, in 1959, Hawaii became a part of the United States. It came about as a result of revolution which unseated the local Republican party, which had been in power in an almost unbroken run since the country had become a constitutional monarchy in 1887 (though that didn’t last long – it was shortly after annexed by the US in 1898 and became a Territory). The Republicans had close ties to a number of companies known as the Big Five, originally sugar plantation owners and processors, whose oligarchic power … Read more

Election

Reese Witherspoon and Matthew Broderick in Election

A movie for every day of the year – a good one 23 July Monica Lewinsky born, 1973 Today in 1973, Monica Samille Lewinsky was born, in San Francisco, USA. Best known for giving a US president a blow job, which the US president bizarrely later claimed did not equate to “sexual relations” (since he was receiving rather than giving the favour), Lewinsky was a 22-year-old intern at the White House at the time her relationship with President Clinton took place. It came to light because Linda Tripp, a fellow worker at the Pentagon – where Lewinsky was moved by superiors concerned at the amount of time she was spending with Clinton – … Read more

Nebraska

Bruce Dern in Nebraska

Staggering along under a weight of folksiness, much like its old-guy hero is staggering along on his beat up legs, Alexander Payne’s latest movie is sweet and wry but let’s not all get too excited. The film certainly doesn’t. Bruce Dern is the old guy, an amnesiac oldster with a “beer isn’t drinking” drink problem who reckons he’s won some obviously fake mailout sweepstake – “you could already have won a million dollars” kind of thing. With nothing else to live for, and getting under the feet of his wife (June Squibb), Woody decides he’s going to get to Nebraska any old how to pick up his winnings, even if it means walking. … Read more