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Ender's Game (2013)
Great film until the last fifteen minutes
Ender's game is the story of a child genius forced to become the hero the earth needs due to attacks by "buggers" an alien ant-life form that nearly destroyed us. The paradox is we need a thinking reasoning empathetic psychopath, hard to find, so one needs to be created or tricked.
It'sdifficult in the film to ascertain why Ender is the one being thought of as the saviour compared to other side characters in the film apart from the fact that he had shown aggressive tendencies at a young age or will argue with a senior officer.The film mostly follows the book to the crescendo but then jars discordantly and illogically from the book and reality, Ender has just destroyed a threat (unwittingly) that has killed hundreds of millions of humans but we are led to believe that the Generals watching this final battle against insurmountable odds are more concerned that he has exterminated an alien race rather than him saving humanity from their threat? Ridiculous. They would be on their knees,crying, grabbing his feet, puking in relief etc. Same again all the kids battling with him suddenly knowing that they have saved humanity from this threat. In the book Ender is the only person that feels this way, in the film we'd rather have not destroyed them and Ender has gone too far. So add one some superficial I can also meet the last of the Buggers and fly away forever garbage and you have the worst of all compromises.
Return to Waterloo (1984)
An underrated masterpiece of the 80's
Ray Davies' Return To Waterloo should stand up in British culture at least as high as The Who's Tommy and even Pink Floyd's The Wall.
The saying " the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation" Has always been specifically applied to the British middle classes, and never more so that to Ken Colley's rendition of the Traveller, continuing his daily pilgrimage to Waterloo, to his Estate Agent's Job in the centre of London, despite his possible mental breakdown , or the more disturbing realisation that he may ( or may not ) be the sought after Surrey Rapist.
Like any Rock Opera, what makes this production is the quality of the songs, from the kids at the platform mickying "ladder of success," to the hauntingly beautiful ( and tearfullly sad ) "Have you seen this face" Davies manages to keep many possibilities and happenstances open, until you are unsure if what you are seeing from the Traveller is a collection of morning train daydreams, the visions of a fast decaying mind, or guilt aligning itself to reality and cognisance and the necessary reparations.
Doctor Who: Blink (2007)
Dr Who at it's very best
As a kid I used to hide behind the sofa when Patrick Troughton fought the Shop Dummies or Jon Pertwee the sea monsters , I never thought that in my 40s I'd be scared by watching a new episode of Dr Who , but Steven Moffat surpassed all my expectations with this intelligently written and truly frightening episode. There will be adults 25 years from now scared to look at a stone angel in a cemetery as a direct result of what they saw as a child, due to Steven's continued ability to tap into what frightens us at so many levels. The best Dr Who episode ever written, and I say that well into my forties.