Taken as read that linear movies of interactive video game shoot-em-ups are always going to miss their mark, then Hitman takes a decent shot at big-action espionage guff, with some decent actors spouting nonsense between stylish set-pieces.
Post-Bourne franchise, charismatic Timothy Olyphant (Die Hard 4.0, Justified) is the least covert assassin since Bond, with Bond-girl Olga Kurylenko (Quantum, Oblivion) lighting up the screen and Dougray Scott (Enigma, Mission Impossible) the tough but honest Interpol Agent.
The plot is cobbled together using post-it notes from the Segal/Statham/Jet Li/Luc Besson writers’ brainstorming session; we’ve seen it all before with Bourne, Bond and assorted Missions Improbable, and it apes their style with utter predictability. Continue reading
There’s a brilliant article on A List Apart: The Trouble With EM ’n EN (and Other Shady Characters) by Peter K Sheerin
from way back in October, 2001, now sadly marked “This article, while brilliant for its time, is now obsolete.”
However the topic doesn’t go away and we’re still struggling, not only with the style guide but how to render these shady characters for the web when there are all sorts of technical issues.
First of all, what’s the Difference Between an Em Dash, En Dash & Hyphen? And what has happened to them online?
In a small church on the West coast of Ireland, a man comes into the confessional and tells of his abused childhood at the hands of a paedophile priest; and that in seven days he’s going to kill his confessor (Brendan Gleeson – Troy, In Bruges), precisely for being a good man.
Gleeson’s Father James Lavelle then has a week in which to settle his affairs; a week in a toxic parish of cynicism, disillusion and despair which tests his own faith to the limit. Continue reading
Aleks Krotoski explores the history of programming languages. The history of computing is dominated by the hardware; the race for speed and power has overshadowed how we’ve devised ways to instruct these machines to do useful tasks.
All this week on BBC Radio 4, Aleks Krotoski tells the story of the languages that have been used to talk to machines.
Krotoski, journalist and presenter of the Guardian Tech Weekly Podcast and soon the seventh series of The Digital Human, looks at computer programming languages in five 15-minute shows. Presented in the style of BBC-Popular-Science-Lite, these are whistle-stop tours for the mildly interested lunchtime listener. Continue reading
I missed Syfy Channel’s quirky TV sci-fi comedy drama the first time out, only to discover in the re-runs that is is more fi- than sci-, more wan-smile than comic and too predictable for drama. Which leaves it trading on quirky, and that just ain’t enough.
Billed as a sort of X-Files-lite (even liter than it’s TV cousin, the dismal Warehouse 13), Eureka‘s premise sees a US Marshall transferred to be sheriff of a North-West American small (i.e. Vancouver) town that covers a top-secret government research facility, Global Dynamics.
As such Eureka is flat-pack sci-fi geekery, an anything-goes episodic fanstasy show with a fish-out-of-water detective surrounded by scientists and hokey Weird Science tropes, all punctuated with a sub-Danny Elfman Desperate Housewives score. Continue reading
Remember that 80’s boy’s own warrior fantasy Highlander, with immortal Scot-tosh swordsman Christopher Lambert fighting down the ages to the mordern day? Now imagine that flipped around, and role-reversed so a fish-out-of-water British nurse from WWII lands in Stevenson’s Kidnapped as told from Katriona’s point of view.
Producer Ronald D. Moore brings twin-period Brigadoon Galactica to the low-rent Starz Network with this dull historical fantasy; part Alice in Wonderland, part Kidnapped, part Vikings – significantly Kilts-and-Boon. Adapted from Diana Gabaldon’s novels, a fine British cast struggles to raise the material much past Fifty Shades of Tartan. Continue reading
It’s true: Google is breaking it’s heavily embedded but failed social networking product Google Plus into separate products – Streams and Photos, new head of Social Bradley Horowitz announced on Google+ earlier this month.
It was telling that Horowitz didn’t specifically mention Google Plus, which pretty well signals the end of Google’s foray. Google Plus was supposed to be a one-stop shop for interactiing across all products and all users. Clearly the vision has changed. Continue reading