Posts from 11th November 2008

Nov 08

DON MCLEAN – “Crying”

FT + Popular66 comments • 4,899 views

#460, 21st June 1980

1980’s summer of mope continues with this mawkish, overheated Roy Orbison cover. Orbison’s great strength as a singer was his dignity: as a performer he knew when to hold firm in the face of grief, and more importantly, he knew when to crack. McLean shows no such awareness – he has no dignity to lose in the first place, and his performance here sounds slick and horribly insincere. Lacking the skill to bring any emotion to the song, he opts instead to slather on the strings to a quite grotesque degree: the last minute of this record, with McLean’s puny falsetto battling an avalanche of tacky tears, is painful.

Just Be Thankful It Is Not Scratch And Sniff

FT10 comments • 234 views

This years winner for the Anti-Date Movie Of The Year at the BAFTA’s is already a given, Steve McQueen’s Hunger will kill that burgeoning relationship stone dead. There is nothing like a dirty protest to turn a date off. But what is interesting about Hunger is the political context of the film. History is apparently written by the winners, but what if there aren’t any winners? The reality of Northern Ireland is a bitter struggle followed by complex but on the whole civilised round table talks. Much as there isn’t a film called CONVENTION, about some white people around a table in Geneva, I am guessing we are not going to see STORMONT, or THE NORTHERN IRELAND PEACE PROCESS. So what good does Hunger do now?

In this controversial piece of op/ed in the Guardian David Cox argues that there seems something wrong about Hunger being funded by mainly British taxpayers money. Whilst I think for once the UK Film Council’s money has gone into a strikingly good film, I do have some sympathy for the argument (less so for the way in which he makes it and his views on torture).