Live-Tweeting Reactions to ‘Alien’ (1979)

Hear the writers discuss this subject on the Secret Cave Podcast!

After several not-so friendly pokes in the ribs from Lee, I’ve caved and watched Alien.

I have no idea how I evaded it for so long, and it’s something I’m pretty ashamed about. However, I jumped at the chance to watch it as a way to write something a bit different for Secret Cave.

Scroll past my proper-writer analysis below to read the condensed, live-tweet version.

Shamefully late Alien first impressions

Unlike audiences at the time, or even the majority of normal people on Earth today, I’d been exposed to countless Alien imitators, but never the genuine article.…   [continue reading]

The Best and Worst of Trailers [2016]

Hear the writers discuss this subject on the Secret Cave Podcast!  And another time!  And even another time!

At first I was going to make this piece an overview of trailers in their entirety, using two from this year as examples.  Instead, it occurred to me that i’d simply be stealing an upcoming subject from fellow writer, Ben Mulholland.  As such, I thought it more befitting of me to look in depth at the two examples.  One staggeringly bad, another breathtakingly good, there are a lot of meaty tangents to go off on from both.

Trailers, on the whole, are mere promotional tools to rally the populous.  …   [continue reading]

The Wild Blue Yonder

Werner Herzog will always be remembered as one of Germany’s greatest directors, and creative forces in general.  A man with numerous classics to his name (such as Fitzcarraldo, Nosferatu the Vampyre or his impressive array of non-fiction documentaries), it’s easy to overlook some of his less lauded works.  Indeed, sometimes this is a fair reaction to pockets of such an immense body of material.  In the case of The Wild Blue Yonder however, we have a film truly deserving of brighter spotlight.

The concept is a captivating one from its inception, if at first – deliberately – alienating.  Beginning with an intense introduction from Brad Dourif in one of his strangest, and most tragically unsung, roles, we slip ethereally into his story of alien colonisation.  …   [continue reading]

Silent Running

silent_running_poster_03

Silent Running is laughed at far too often than it deserves, but that’s mainly directed towards the pretty awful Joan Baez tunes that pepper the piece and occasionally campy dialogue throughout…

When getting over these speed bumps however, the film actually ends up being an awesomely coherent and thematic brother to the far more lauded and well-known 2001: A Space Odyssey.  That’s not even a facile analogy either, but one of the fundamental ideas it was based on.  Silent Running‘s main creative force, Douglas Trumbull, had a large hand in the creation of the entire of science fiction’s aesthetic.  This can’t be denied when you look at it his work, which is on display in such movies as Blade Runner, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, The Andromeda Strain and Star Trek: The Motion Picture.…   [continue reading]