This week’s blog column from Bel Tel…

28 04 2010

This week’s round up of the blogging week (and my gigantic cranium) can be found on the Bel Tel website here. Have also pasted it up below too…

Extreme bloggers take on amphibious film festivals and 70s time-warps…

The Belfast Film Festival is coming to a close this week. Yes, the festival is about innovative, exciting new films but it can also be about innovative, exciting new locations to screen them.

So where is the ideal location to screen an aquatic horror movie like ‘Lake Placid’? Why, at dusk on a small boat in the middle of the Lagan of course!

“After a quick briefing about the location of life rafts and life jackets, the engine started, the screen came on, the snacks came out and our floating cinema headed out into our very own Lake Placid,” said Simon at Life in NI.

With the help of the Lagan Boat Company, this film was a big hit. But not every film went so swimmingly.

Chekov at Three Thousand Versts attended the world premier of ’Five Day Shelter’. The blogger (a Liverpool fan) took his seat just as the acting lead introduced the movie “with a cheery reference to Manchester United”. It went downhill from there.

“With reluctance I decided to set my prejudice aside. I needn’t have bothered. ‘Five Day Shelter’ is an epically dreary and boring film,” he wrote. Not a fan then.

Alan in Belfast went to see ‘Lebanon’ (or ‘Four Men and A Tank’ as he dubs it). “A dark subject matter, but a film worth seeing for its unusual setting and the complex characters involved,” he says.

But a word of warning from Alan – toilet facilities in tanks are primitive and the film’s soundtrack is rather vivid.

And from big screen premiers to small screen debuts as the first official Northern Ireland leaders’ election debate took place this week. Sadly it wasn’t received too well by bloggers.

Ivor Whitten at Hand of History said: “Well, that is one whole hour I will not get back again… Overall, I am just glad my licence fee does not go to UTV.”

So that’s a leaders’ debate #FAIL then Ivor?

Jude Collins scored the debate as a win for UUP leader Sir Reg Empey and Sinn Fein Leader Gerry Adams. This turned out to be a double-win for Reg who triumphed over his opponents and his own physiology. Jude reckoned Reg used to look frighteningly thin on TV but now he appears to have an oddly shaped head.

“No doubt a trick of the camera but it looks as if his head has been stretched into a terrifying oblong shape,” he said. But it’s a win nevertheless.

Still on politics, and former New York State governor Mario Cuomo once opined that you “campaign in poetry but govern in prose”. Burke’s Corner has updated the aphorism and would instead prefer to see parties govern in iambic pentameter.

“Yes, after 6th May, we hope for a government that will bring the deficit under control, mend our broken society and renew the military covenant. But it must also restore Shakespeare and thus renew the cultural realm,” he says. As you like it my friend.

Elsewhere, the volcano story rumbles on. This time Jenny Muir at East Belfast Diary was stuck in foreign fields… and a low-tech time-warp.

She said: “I had no internet access, couldn’t blog, had no TV, and worked out how to get Radio 4 on the clock radio after about two days. It was like being a student in the 1970s again, only this time with an en suite.”

No interweb? Patchy Radio 4? You’ve described my vision of hell (albeit with commendable facilities).

And finally, an insouciant Foreign Office memo on a possible by the Pope to the UK (complete with references to Papal-branded condoms) elicits a spirited defence of the pontiff by Splintered Sunrise.

“Regular readers will know that I’m something of a fan of Pope Benedict. The man wears red shoes, rehabilitated the Tridentine Mass and annoys Richard Dawkins just by getting up in the morning – what’s not to like?… Actually, my initial reaction was “What is Frankie Boyle doing working in the Foreign Office?”

Answer that one Frankie…

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