Movies and Books #BriFri
Welcome to British Isles Friday! British Isles Friday is a weekly event for sharing all things British and Irish — reviews, photos, opinions, trip reports, guides, links, resources, personal stories, interviews, and research posts. Join us each Friday to link your British and Irish themed content and to see what others have to share. The link list is at the bottom of this post. Pour a cup of tea or lift a pint and join our link party!
Last week, I learned that Johnson’s Dictionary from 1755 said that no words in the English language began with X. Tina re-visited Herriott’s Yorkshire with a contemporary author who has a Twitter following in A Year in the Life of a Yorkshire Shepherdess. Gaele reviewed three books: Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys, A Year of Taking Chances by Jennifer Bohnet, Charity Ends at Home by Colin Watson (fifth in a mystery series from the 1960s, currently being republished). Becky reviewed a historical novel about the illegitimate daughter of King John, Here Be Dragons, and listened to audio dramas.
April was consumed by the A to Z Challenge. I really enjoyed my theme of UK and Ireland, with the bonus that my British Isles Friday posts fit right into the flow.
For today, I thought I’d look back through what I’ve watched and read in the past month to make sure that I didn’t miss anything that I wanted to talk about on my blog.
MoviesPhantom Thread. We lasted about thirty minutes on this one. I didn’t like the characters or where things seemed to be heading and Rick fell asleep. So we gave up on it. Should I have tried longer? It got six Academy Award nominations so I must be missing something. Other people seemed to really like this film focused on London’s fashion world of the 1950s.
The Man Who Invented Christmas. This one got no nominations and I was completely charmed. I want to watch it again during the Christmas season.
Murder on the Orient Express. It seems I shared the majority opinion on this one — stunningly beautiful, but the all-star cast was underutilized. Many of us who are used to David Suchet’s portrayal of Poirot couldn’t quite come around to Kenneth Branagh’s way of playing the role.
I wrote about The Jane Austen Project for ‘J’ and The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage for ‘L’.
So the only British-set book that got lost in April was the tenth book in the Maisie Dobbs series by Jacqueline Winspear, Leaving Everything Most Loved. I sometimes find these books calming, but not this one because Maisie is anticipating big changes in her life and I felt as unsettled as she did. This almost had the feel of the end of the series, but it’s from 2013 and four more books have been published since then. I have a feeling that at least some of the newer books aren’t going to spend much time in England as Maisie seems prepared to leave everything she loves.
What content from the UK & Ireland do you have to share this week? I’ll add my links to my last few A to Z Challenge posts, including one where I recapped the whole month in order.
Seems I share your opinion about Orient Express. Completely underutilized! I enjoyed your A to Z challenge very much!
I loved, loved, loved The Man Who Invented Christmas. I watched it twice while I had it out from the library. And I would have watched it another time if I could have squeezed it in! I wish there was a film showing Dickens writing each of his novels!
I preferred “The Collection” on PBS to Phantom Thread -but I watched the whole thing (like books – I’m loathe to not finish something just in case it finds new feet and resolves issues). I think I prefer Branagh in his slight ‘ott’ characters – and like you – prefer Suchet’s Poirot…. perhaps it’s the ‘familiar’ for me. Dove into Maigret with Rowan Atkinson – and loved the production of this new 50’s series – especially the feel that comes from a Foyle-like character. A handful of reads this week too…. I need to see The Man Who Invented Christmas…. and haven’t seen Mulder on he Orient Express – yet.
I think my expectations for Orient Express were so low, I ended up enjoying it. Phantom Thread was a disturbing film, one I couldn’t stop thinking about. What I took away from the movie was an interest in Lesley Manville who plays the sister. I’ve just discovered her British series, Mum, in which she is HILARIOUS. Highly recommend that one.
I couldn’t comment on your blog but loved seeing the trailer for the film adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s story and thanks for sharing the audio links to his reading that too.
My recent reading included “Train” by Tom Zoellner, which included a chapter on his rail trip from the northernmost RR station in Scotland to the extreme south of England. However, my review had more about the other chapters. It’s a terrific book and I recommend all of it!
My favorite British series includes Midsommer Murders (new ones coming today if I’m not mistaken) and several other detective series, as well as the David Suchet Poirot — but those are old news.
I’m glad to see what other people are watching!
best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com
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Hi Joy, I just added my ‘This Friday In Britain’ post to your linky. There are maybe two words of everyday English language type in my post that are sometimes labelled offensive to readers of other cultures/English language variants. Not the ‘F’ word and nothing we’d label as offensive in England. Run of the mill social commentary is probably the category my post matches with best, inspired by the news, while I don’t get out and about much to show places of interest etc. I’ll dig into my archives and see what I can come up with although this challenge might help me drag myself out a little more often 🙂 I’d like to find out more on some of these books too. About to head off and read other posts in the linky then I’ll be back to catch up with your A to Z posts. Best wishes, hope you’re having a good weekend and a good week ahead 🙂
I haven’t seen The Orient Express yet but I would like to see it. It’s a shame that the cast was underutilised.
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