Bridge of Spies, movie starring Tom Hanks as a lawyer who after defending a Soviet spy is called on to arrange a prisoner swap for a pilot. It's got great reviews and a high rating, but I thought it was a bit predictable and underwhelming. Well acted, well filmed, didn't seem to have anything new.
Aside: seems amazing that kids in Fifties/Sixties America got any kind of education, since according to movies they just seem to have watched "Duck and Cover" with worried expressions on their innocent faces for all and every school day.
What I'm Reading
Nod by Adrian Barnes. Apocalyptic novel where all but a handful of people start experiencing total insomnia, leading to hallucinations, madness and eventual death.
Was a bit worried that as an insomnia sufferer it would be unbearable to read. But since the point of view was from one of the rare Sleepers it felt quite pleasantly vindictive. Certainly at 4AM it's quite nice to imagine the rest of the smug snoring world experiencing this hell for once, even if it means the collapse of civilisation.
Quite well done, with a few nods to the classic "On the Beach". However it's apparently the first volume of a planned series, so it ends with some things unresolved.
What I'm Reading 2
The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey. Another post-apocalyptic novel, this one starting some years after a zombie apocalypse. It's largely written from the point of view of a child who is a zombie capable of rational thought who has to travel through the wasteland north of London with a teacher and a handful of others.
Really liked this one. It actually manages to get a new-ish angle on things. Has believable characters, a thoroughly worked out system of zombiehood, a decent plot which comes to a great science fictional conclusion. Well worth reading.
Changed my mind at the last minute and went for "Remain" in the referendum. As I said a while back, it's a battle of neoliberal capitalism versus xenophobic nativism and I don't really like either side.
The actual outcome seems to have been a bit worse than I expected. I would have hoped we would have at least one functioning political party for instance. Instead the Leave Tories seem to be hiding under the bedclothes, the lame duck PM is unwilling to do any of "the hard shit". The Labour party was faced with a near-ideal situation: an opposition in disarray, a leader who shrewdly kept doors open to the other side, and a "you broke it" advantage where any turbulence could be attributed to the other side. So naturally the PLP picked this moment to implode completely.
But if the vote had gone the other way, I think things would have been bad too. A massive, alienated, largely working class group convinced they'd been stabbed in the back by elite metropolitans. The right of the conservative party empowered by that frustration. More neoliberal stuff stuff like TTIP across Europe, housing made ever more expensive in the UK.
The far right I think would have done much the same. Most of the banners and stickers we've seen in the hate campaign are from established far right groups: Britain First, Combat 18, even the old National Front: they must have been planning some post-referendum chaos in advance.
Overall: Just bring on the zombies.
Socioeconomics. Tenure extension policies backfire against women (also illustrates how affirmative action may sometimes be better than "equal" action).
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