Johnny Be Good, 10 Years On


November 22nd 2003. The Rugby World Cup Final, England vrs Australia.  A date tattooed on the brain of all Englishmen, not to mention a few Strines and Welshmen, I shouldn’t wonder.

This movie even gives due credit to Old Dartfordians’ part in Johnny Wilkinson’s finest hour, if the movie poster is to be believed. And about time too, I say ! The bloke playing me looks a bit on the heavy side, but I guess that’s for comic effect.

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And The Winner Isn’t (Original Screenplay)


Scrolling through the list of nominees for this year’s Academy Awards it dawns on me just how few movies I’ve been to see over the past 12 months. I saw Up on a plane and Hurt Locker on DVD. Although a huge movie fan, I’ve always shied away from going to the cinema, preferring to wait til the DVD release. Yes, I’m fully aware that films were made to be watched on the big screen, but a trip to the flicks has always been a less than underwhelming experience for me.

Whatever The Drifters may think, Saturday Night at the Movies was a miserable, wasted night. I could never get comfortable, movie houses having a penchant for packing you in, in rows of seats with airliner leg-room. You couldn’t get a beer (well not in the UK anyway), which means 2 1/2 hours of your weekend wasted, and I always manage to sit in front of someone annoying bastard from one of the following categories:
1. He’s seen the movie before and would give his mates/girlfriend a commentary of the film, using helpful phrases like “oh, this is a good bit” or reciting the upcoming line 2 seconds before it was delivered.
2. He’s bought out the concessions stand in the foyer and would rustle and chomp his way through the whole movie, right in your ear hole.
3. Him and his missus are copulating throughout the film with the accompanying squeaks, giggles and groans being very off-putting. And it’s even worse if the couple happen to be sitting in front of you. A silhouetted head bobbing up and down in the row in front of me once made me miss every third frame of Schindler’s List
4. He laughs heartily at every single gag in the movie, as if he was the scriptwriter.
5. He’s pissed, so all of the above could apply.

And before you tell me that multiplexes now have huge sofas and bars with proper food and drinks served to you, it’s too late. The die has been cast, and anyway it’ll still be full of gits.

Ah! That's more like it

No, even for one with such tolerance for and love of my fellow man, I prefer to watch my films at home from the comfort, peace and quiet of my own sofa, where the only sound is the door of the fridge opening when the Incumbent opens another couple of beers.

It’ll be the first time in ten years that I won’t be participating in TIME magazine‘s Oscar Sweep, where we’d predict/guess who will win which category. But seeing as I’ve watched very few movies this year my chances of winning would be, at best, minimal. Although some of the awards they hand out are so obscure that it’s a complete lottery anyway (who makes notes on their favourite Writing from an Adapted Screenplay ? Certainly not that girl sitting in the row in front of me blowing her boyfriend)

So when the time comes I will be hoping that Hurt Locker romps home with the award for Best (Only)Nominated Picture Seen by Me This Year and UP walks away with Best Animated Feature shown by Oman Air Last November.

Obviously we’ll all be biting our nails, hoping Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen wins in the category of Sound Mixing.