Book Review: They Shall Have Stars (Variant title: Year 2018!), James Blish (1956)

3.75/5 (Good)

They Shall Have Stars (1956) is the first of James Blish’s famous Cities in Flight novels (note: the series was not released according to its internal chronology — the third volume, Earthman Come Home was published first in 1955). Continue reading Book Review: They Shall Have Stars (Variant title: Year 2018!), James Blish (1956)

A Film Rumination: The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, Fassbinder (1972)

8/10 (Very Good)

The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972) is by far my favorite Rainer Werner Fassbinder film I’ve seen and like all of his films, an acquired taste.  I’ve not always appreciated his works — I barely tolerated The Merchant of Four Seasons and managed to watch only half of The Marriage of Maria Braun (I did enjoy Veronika Voss). However, Continue reading A Film Rumination: The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, Fassbinder (1972)

A Film Rumination: The Wind Journeys, Ciro Guerra (2009)

7/10 (Good)

On strong recommendation from my sister I finally got around to seeing this unusual Colombian film.  I have to admit, I know very little about Spanish language cinema (especially from the Americas).  Regardless, I found The Wind Journeys a fascinating experience — one Continue reading A Film Rumination: The Wind Journeys, Ciro Guerra (2009)

A Film Rumination: Damn the Defiant! (variant title: H. M. S. Defiant), Lewis Gilbert (1962)

https://i0.wp.com/granadamovieposters.com/photos/damndefiantHS.jpg7/10 (Good)

Damn the Defiant! isn’t the best naval action film out there however it’s definitely an under appreciated good film.  That said, I have a weakness for the subject matter since I grew up on C. S. Forester’s Hornblower and Alexander Kent’s Captain Bolitho books (i.e Napoleonic era valiant British officers fighting the evil Frenchies!).  Thus, Continue reading A Film Rumination: Damn the Defiant! (variant title: H. M. S. Defiant), Lewis Gilbert (1962)

A Film Rumination: Fitzcarraldo, Werner Herzog (1982)

9/10 (Masterpiece)

Werner Herzog’s masterpiece, Fitzcarraldo (1982), has long been one of my favorite films.  It’s one of the few films I’ve seen more than once (with friends, family, and with my cat).  Every time, I’m blown away by its sheer audacity and raw power.  This is entirely due to Herzog’s rather mono-thematic view of the world (MAN MUST Continue reading A Film Rumination: Fitzcarraldo, Werner Herzog (1982)

Book Review: Non-Stop (variant title: Starship), Brian Aldiss (1958)

4.75/5 (Very Good)

A generation ship!  Science run amok!  A brilliant work from the late 50s which must be read!  Brian Aldiss’ Non-Stop (published in the U.S. as Starship) is a relentlessly dark science fiction novel written in response to Robert Heinlein’s revolutionary yet ultimately unsatisfying Orphans of Continue reading Book Review: Non-Stop (variant title: Starship), Brian Aldiss (1958)

Book Review: The Wrong End of Time, John Brunner (1971)

2/5 (Bad)

I’ve had John Brunner’s The Wrong End of Time (1971) for five years sitting in the to read pile — I’ve managed to get through around thirty pages the four times I’ve tried to read it over the years.  However, I’ve finally got around to finishing it.  And, well, it falls woefully short of any sort of greatness — especially Continue reading Book Review: The Wrong End of Time, John Brunner (1971)