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Star Trek Continues (2013)
A loving and respectful re-creation of the classic series
Goodness me! I've seen a few Star Trek fan series but nothing like this. It's totally amazing. The accuracy of the re-creation of the look and feel of the original series is just astonishing - the sets, props, costumes, makeup, hair, even the lighting are just about perfect - even new elements, like new aliens, are true to the design and build of the original Star Trek. I've been a Star Trek fan for about 45 years now and I'd be hard put to spot differences between that and this series without very close observation. The professionalism, love and dedication of the team behind Star Trek Continues are obvious and second to none. The stories are really good too - true to the original series and its history, every single episode is worthy of the original and even better than some of the original episodes. The acting and directing are universally good. It's difficult to fault it. Whenever I watch the original Star Trek series in future I'll always finish by watching this.
I was really looking forward to this but what a disappointment. I saw the first 3 episodes as that was all that was available at the time on Paramount+ in the UK. They were humdrum, run-of-the-mill space adventure stuff that could have been anything - replace the characters with anyone else and put it in a different setting and it wouldn't have mattered. I won't be bothered if I never see another episode.
PS (28 July 2022) To everyone who is complaining that this and other recent series are "woke": Star Trek was always alert and aware to racial discrimination, that's one of its fundamental values - the presence of Uhura and Sulu and the episode "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield" from the original series are perfect examples.
Bohemian Rhapsody (2018)
After the critics had their say on this I was reluctant to see it but my brother wanted to go for his birthday so we went. It's a brilliant film - fun, uplifting, exciting and emotional, just like Queen. There isn't a weak link right the way through and Rami Malek is sensational. Definitely my film of the year.
Star Trek: Discovery (2017)
Fears are over - it's really good
I've been a Star Trek fan for almost all of my life now (that's since the late seventies - so long ago I can't even remember the year) so I approached this new incarnation of Star Trek with excitement mingled with a lot of trepidation. I needn't have worried - it's really good. I'm going to stick my neck out and put myself in the firing line and say that, of all the Star Trek series from The Next Generation onwards this is the one that comes closest to the feel of the original series. It's got just the right balance of action-adventure, thoughtfulness, characterization and drama. And it's well acted and written. Well done to everyone involved. If it continues like this then I'll be a fan.
Superb documentary with exciting new revelations
I have now watched this excellent BBC documentary twice and the excitement doesn't diminish with a second viewing. Veteran presenter and interviewer Jeremy Paxman follows the story of Bernadette Murphy, a British woman living in French Provence, as she turns detective and tries to find out exactly what happened on the evening that Vincent Van Gogh cut off his own ear. The story is well and lucidly told, the excitement and interest building as revelations are made about the circumstances behind Van Gogh's self- mutilation, exactly who he gave his severed ear to and why, and the exact nature of the injury he inflicted on himself. One of the most amazing pieces of research by an amateur, fascinating and moving in equal measure and highly recommended.