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Showing posts from August, 2020

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1963)

It's the height of the Cold War and the superpowers are engaged in a nuclear stand-off. Just one small error, or one mad general, could see the whole world plunged into the horror of a nuclear war. So it's lucky that there aren't any mad generals around with a finger on the nuclear button. Well, maybe there is just one. General Jack D. Ripper (played by Sterling Hayden) of the US Air Force. Ripper has become obsessed with communist infiltration and subversion in the United States. Discovering the sinister plot of fluoridation of water supplies, Ripper has decided that this is obviously a corrupt communist scheme directed against America. Ripper realises that he can't stand by and do nothing any longer, while ordinary Americans are being poisoned. So he has decided to launch a pre-emptive nuclear strike against the Soviet Union. He puts his base, Burpelson Air Force Base, into lockdown, orders the removal of all radios as sources of outside information, and tells his

Film and TV Inspired by The Great Train Robbery

The Great Train Robbery of 1963 is one of the most famous crimes in 20th century British history. As a result, it inevitably inspired numerous films and TV series, from the factual to the semi-fictionalised to the almost entirely fictional. At around 3 am on Thursday 8th August 1963, a Royal Mail train travelling overnight from Glasgow to London was halted by a red "Stop" signal near Mentmore in Buckinghamshire. The red signal was a fake, the signal's green light having been covered with a glove   and the signal wired to show a false red light instead.

12 Lessons from 3 Years of Blogging

Cinema Essentials is now officially 3 years old, so I'd like to take this opportunity to say "Thank You" to my loyal readers. Both of you. :) If it wasn't for social distancing, then right now I'd be buying you a drink. Or at least thinking of a plausible excuse for why I can't, or making up a story about how I lost my wallet on the bus. I have to admit, when I first started this website, I never dreamed that I would get thousands of subscribers and earn millions of pounds. Which is just as well, because I haven't. But I have met plenty of friendly, interesting bloggers and been accepted into the film blogging community (I think). As I've said before, and am now going to tediously repeat, I don't really consider this website to be a blog as such. But it does use blogging software and some of the infrastructure of blogging, and I have learned a little bit about the subject in the last three years. So I'm going to share these amazingly v