Robin Catling

Writer; performer; project manager; sports coach; all-round eccentric.
Robin Catling has written 871 posts for Everything Express

Review – Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

In a relentless drive to up the ante in Marvel comic-book sequels, it’s only Joss Whedon’s sense of humour that saves this noisy, CGI-laden behemoth from crash, bash and smash tedium. The script is a load of portentous twaddle about artificial intelligence, monsters, mayhem and extinction-level events, or, put another way, any excuse to run … Continue reading

Review: Sia – 1000 forms of Fear

Sia Furler is the Aussie songstress so determined not to be famous you can barely find a photo of her. She ran an anti-fame manifesto in Billboard, doesn’t appear in her videos and performed live at the Grammy’s with her back to the audience. Having released five studio albums, a few live sets and a … Continue reading

Review: Child 44 (2015)

Chameleon actor Tom Hardy (Batman, Legend) turns in a Brando-like performance as Russian war hero turned investigator Leo Demidov on the trail of a serial killer. In a paranoid Soviet state of suspicion and fear, executing its citizens at will, even his schoolteacher wife Raisa (Noomi Rapace – Prometheus, Dragon Tatoo trilogy) is afraid of … Continue reading

Last Knights (2015)

This technically impressive Euro-Asian co-production resets the 47 Ronin (the proper story, not the Keanu Reeves disaster) in a fantasy-medieval, multi-cultural version of the Byzantine Empire, looking for that Game of Thrones crossover. After Morgan Freeman’s (Transcendence, Lucy) nobleman sacrifices himself on principle, Clive Owen (Bourne, Closer) heads the masterless Samurai – sorry, knights – … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: Jack Reacher (2012)

In an efficient, and in places, stylish, action thriller, the physically massive protagonist of Lee Child’s novels is replaced by the diminutive and svelt Tom Cruise. Between Knight and Day and various Missions Improbable, Cruise manages to bland-down the titular hero to a point somewhere between Minority Report and TV’s The Equaliser.

Humour: Stop smiling

“Stop smiling – the PC’s not even plugged in” From: The Register, Microsoft U-turns on ‘free’ Windows 10 upgrade promise for ALL previewers

Review: Cinderella (2015)

Shakespeare and opera actor/director Ken Branagh continues his mainstream success (Thor, Jack Ryan) with this lavish live-action spectacular lifted from the Disney and Charles Perrault fairytales. It’s an entirely conventional re-telling of an orphaned girl and her chance meeting with a mystery prince named Kit in a fairy-tale Ruritanian kingdom; of vast fairy-tale palaces and … Continue reading

Review: Dredd (2012)

While Pete Travis’ (Vantage Point) bloodily excessive re-boot of Judge Dredd exorcises the horror of Danny Cannon’s 1992 Stallone pantomime, it simply doesn’t re-boot energetically enough despite an Alex Garland (Ex Machina) script. In a post-nuclear Mega City One, the 800m citizens sprawl across an area from Boston to DC that looks all too close … Continue reading

How-to: Team Building the Inclusive Way

Team Building used to consist of everyone piling into a room, death by PowerPoint from our Glorious Leaders and thinly veiled threats of what would happen if we didn’t shut up, get on with it and meet the expected Mission Impossible revenue/savings/productivity/overtime targets. These days we have to be more inclusive. How do you balance … Continue reading

Review: Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (BBC1, 2015)

The BBC brings more wigs and breeches to the Poldark slot; but hold fast, this is no high romantic drama, but the adaptation of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, a weirdly pedestrian and parochial tale of bumbling apologetic sorcerors. Imagine BBC’s Ghormenghast without the colour, or Tim Burton’s Sleepy Hollow without… pretty much everything; it’s … Continue reading

Review: The Imitation Game (2014)

This unassuming biopic of British scientist and father of modern computing, Alan Turing, is warmly and delicately told from his time as a schoolboy prodigy to his last days as a convicted, chemically castrated outcast. Benedict Cumberbatch (Star Trek Into Darkness, The Fourth Estate) brings his other-worldly strangeness to the obsessive cryptographer and builder of … Continue reading

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