Byzantium

Gemma Arterton in Byzantium

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one     26 November     Vlad the Impaler becomes ruler of Wallachia for third time, 1476 On this day in 1476, Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia became ruler of Wallachia for the third time. His father, Vlad II, had become a member of the chivalric Order of the Dragon (Drache in German, Dracul in Romanian) in 1431. As the son, Vlad III carried the patronymic Dracula, son of Dracul (he signed himself Wladislaus Dragwlya). Vlad III spent a good deal of his life asserting his claim on Wallachia. He was first installed as a ruler by the Ottomans – … Read more

23 September 2013-09-23

Saoirse Ronan in Byzantium

Out in the UK This Week   Byzantium (StudioCanal/cert 15, Blu-ray/DVD) Ah, the burden of being a vampire. It’s been done to death in the movies recently but Neil Jordan is at the helm here and knows how to spice things up. Here he adds a touch of the same mix he used on The Company of Wolves nearly 30 years ago. In other words there’s added social critique, class and gender being the targets of both Jordan and writer Moira Buffini. Saoirse Ronan and Gemma Arterton are the two vampires searching for a new home, the former a Let the Right One In waif, the latter a lusty Hammer horror vamp – both … Read more

The Best Films I Saw in 2013

The cast of You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet

Updated 2013-12-30 Here they are, the best films I saw in 2013. It’s a Top Ten job with the best in no particular order, followed by a list of films that made the top ten at some point in the year, then got bounced. This is not a Best of 2013, let me quickly point out, just the best films I’ve seen this year. So a film everyone else has seen but I haven’t won’t be here (I’ve not seen American Hustle yet, f’rinstance). And there might be stragglers from 2012 in here which I caught up with late. It really is “the best films I have seen this year”. If you’re wondering … Read more