Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Douglas Henshall plays Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes in this BBC production. It begins with Doyle, sick of writing "Holmes" stories, deciding to kill off his creation. The public reaction is understandably negative, prompting a row with his publisher. Added to the mix is his own wife's worsening tuberculosis. Finally, he's got a rather pretty female fan who "understands" him.
In the middle of this personal crisis, a man appears at his door who claims to be the official biographer from Doyle's publisher. He knows a lot about Doyle's background and wants to know more. Soon his biographer is probing into every bit of sad information he can get. What are the real motiviations for this biographer?
An excellent BBC production. Any fan of the Great Detective will enjoy this examination of how and why Arthur Conan Doyle created his famous literary figure.
Sunday, August 16, 2009
In the wake of a certain movie made by George Lucas, a lot of independent producers wanted to get into the Space Epic game. Most of them didn't have the resources to do it right, but they tried just the same. Lifepod, made in 1980, showed what people could do with a lot of enthusiasm could do on a limited budget. Someone duplicated the idea with a lot more money around 1993 as a MTV movie. But I like this one much better.
Several passengers on an exclusive interplanetary ship have found themselves in an escape lifepod after the central computer on the ship declared an emergency. The usual lifeboat cast is here: the journalist, the pretty girl, the corporate exec, the administror and the crew member. Suddenly, the space ship suddenly decides to head after the lifepod. Why? And why did the central computer declare a fake emergency to get everyone off the ship?