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  1. Best TV programmes and films to watch this month

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    Article by Ceri Wheeldon We still don’t have those lovely balmy evenings to spend sitting in the garden, so it seems we are destined to be reliant on Netflix, Prime etc a little bit longer! Here are just a few of my picks to inspire you.  When looking for something to watch I tend to have a 10 minute rule. If I start to watch something and find my mind wandering too much within the first 10 minutes then I stop watching and look for an alternative.  These have all more than survived my 10 minute rule! I should mention that my favourite series over the past year is The Queen’s Gambit.  I’m still hoping to find another that will grip me in the same way. Sadly none of...
  2. Review of Halston Netflix series

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon Like many, I binge watched Halston over the weekend. I love fashion so the opportunity to see the story behind an iconic designer and brand was not to be missed! Starring Ewan McGregor as Halston, the series tracks his rise as a designer influencing American style, and his emergence as a brand in the 70s. It was fascinating to see how Halston came to define his ‘look’….and interesting to see that it was a fabric (ultra suede) that led to his change in fortunes as opposed to a specific ‘look’. A complex character A complicated character we see how he develops friendships and relationships (one notable one being with Liza Minelli) and how those friendships fare as his star rises and the pressure to be constantly creative in order...
  3. Review of The Queen’s Gambit – A fab series to binge watch during Lockdown

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon I love going to the cinema and theatre and have really missed both this year. I have found it increasingly difficult to find interesting series/films to watch on TV and streaming services. I thoroughly enjoyed the The Comey Rule on Sky/Now TV ( only available for a few more  days) but have struggled to find anything bingeworthy since – until stumbling across the Queen’s Gambit on Netflix. The story of a chess champion is an unlikely plot to make you want to immediately want to watch the next episode – but based on a book of the same name, we follow the story of a young girl orphaned at the age of eight who is taught to play chess by a kindly janitor at her orphanage...
  4. Review of Olympia The Film: Inspirational documentary about the life of Olympia Dukakis

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon I love to learn from inspirational women – and this documentary film about Oscar winning actress Olympia Dukakis offers plenty to inspire. The film starts as the cameras follow Olympia being inducted into the Hollywood Hall of Fame at the age of 82. Although gracious, Olympia comes across as being rather bemused by the whole proceedings. It is evident that her passion is acting – rather than celebrity – but it also shows that it is never too late to achieve and be recognised for those achievements!! The daughter of Greek immigrant parents, Olympia hit barriers at every turn in her early acting career for being too ‘ethnic’. Not one to be deterred from her goals , she set up her...
  5. 4 Movies That Show How Family Life Is Really Like

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      Life is a series of unpredictable events, and nobody knows what will happen in the future.  At one moment, you might think that everything is going great, and in the next, your whole life can turn upside down. But if one thing keeps us all together, it’s the love and support we get from our family. We may argue with them from time to time, and we frequently take them for granted, but they are the ones who are with us through joys and sorrows.  If you are going through a rough patch with your family, sometimes all it takes is one fun activity that will make everything normal again. And what could be a better activity than watching a family movie with loved ones?  It will not...
  6. Interview with Emily Atef director of 3 Days In Quiberon about the iconic Romy Schneider

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    Interview by Ceri Wheeldon How do you approach a film about an iconic star, Romy Schneider who in Europe, was the famous actress of her time.  Referred to as ‘Romy’ with no last name required, she was a legend in her own lifetime.I asked director Emily Atef about the challenge of taking on such a project. Q: What prompted you to become involved in the project? Romy Schneider is a mega superstar in France and in Germany, she’s part of the culture there. I’ve known of her since I was very young, and known her films, especially the French films.  I was always fascinated by her, because she was also a fashion icon but I was never a total, unconditional fan. I would...
  7. A Review of The Children Act starring Emma Thompson and Stanley Tucci

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon   “When a court determines any question with respect to … the upbringing of a child … the child’s welfare shall be the court’s paramount consideration.”  The Children Act, 1989.   This is the platform on which the film is based. Judge Fiona Maye (played brilliantly by Emma Thompson) presides over complex cases relating to children. Her commitment to her work, and the ethical challenges she must address on a daily basis consume her life, and her long term marriage to Jack (played by Stanley Tucci) suffers as a result. He wants more from her, while Fiona believes that all long term married couples become more like siblings – and is not motivated to make any changes. Things come to a head when Fiona has...
  8. Review of Churchill – the film

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon Stills credit: © Graeme Hunter Pictures. There has been so much written about Winston Churchill, and so many portrayals of him in Film and TV, that you have to wonder how a film could bring anything fresh to its audience. Interestingly, focuses on just part of Churchill’s history…the build up to the D-Day landings.  Brian Cox’s portrayal of Churchill is superb  and believable. The film starts some three years after the Blitz at a time when everyone , including Churchill , is fatigued by the war.  The Americans have joined the war effort and Churchill is no longer centre stage – that mantle has been passed to Montgomery. The sacrifices Clementine Churchill had to make We see Churchill managing his frustration...
  9. A visit to the Churchill War Rooms

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    Article by Geoff Moore The Churchill Cabinet War Rooms museum London.Picture by: www.thetraveltrunk.net Time travelling back 73 years was the impression I had when I visited the Churchill Cabinet War Rooms in London. Being allowed to walk around inside the sealed glass rooms of the museum in Whitehall has been an amazing experience. Even the smell within them is different. Every item on display was as they were left back in 1945 on the day Japan surrendered. The key moment for the Allies and Churchill was probably D-Day and it was in those rooms deep under London that history was made, planned and recorded. Being...
  10. The Sense of an Ending Film Review

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    Review by Ceri Wheeldon The Sense of an Ending is an adaptation of the novel by Julian Barnes – I hadn’t read the book, so I watched the film with fresh eyes . Jim Broadbent plays the character of Tony, who is divorced, running a small camera shop as he eases into retirement. Tony seems to be emotionally detached from those around him, living a quiet, orderly existence. Out of the blue he discovers that he is left a diary in the will of somebody he has not seen for decades. Why he should be left the diary, and why the contents are relevant to him, he has no idea. The bequest takes  him back to the past, with lots of flashbacks to the 1960s – and his...
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