6 November 2019

Nowadays

The Turners
Weatherwise, yesterday was miserable so at midday I took myself off to the cinema, There were two films I would have liked to see but I plumped for "Sorry We Missed You" - directed by the legendary Ken Loach.

It was powerful stuff. Very English but not in a Downton Abbey or Dr Who kind of way. No - this was about the real England, gritty and true with all pretence stripped away. It is set in The North and focused upon one particular working family - the Turners. The plot follows their travails as the parents - Ricky (Kris Hitchen) and Abby (Debbie Honeywood) - try to forge a decent life within the current economic landscape of zero-hours contracts and diminished workers' rights.

He is a delivery man and she is a carer, visiting needful elderly "clients" in their homes. Abby says she hates that word. Ricky has no contract, just the illusion of self-employment. He is ruled by the hand-held tracking device that shadows his journeys and bleeps continuously.

Reviewer Beth Webb in "Empire" said this of the film: "Though relentless at times, this is a crucial, empathetic rally cry of a film that holds a mirror up to the swelling crisis of the gig economy with admirable intention."
The film contains many tender moments and the Turner family seem real and whole. They are not cardboard cutouts simply used to make a series of socio-political points. They laugh and they cry and they have hopes and dreams. That is why the audience is able to feel for them them as they fight their good fight.

"Sorry We Missed You" was spellbinding but I was not convinced about the ending. Where was Ricky Turner going to in his van? Back to work like a soldier - tying to "keep calm and carry on" - or was he instead seeking an edge to drive over?
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Secondly, I wish to share news of a personal triumph. Some of you will remember that I contribute regularly to a geographical website that continues to illustrate every square kilometre of The British Isles with photographs. Every week there is a "Photo of the week" competition and for Week 43, one of my pictures was chosen as the overall winner - selected from three thousand eligible images. You saw it here first but here it is again:-
And here it is as it appears on the geograph website.

Whoopee-do!

31 comments:

  1. The juxtaposition of your film review and your photographic achievement (well done!) is quite apt.

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    1. You are right Philip. The film shows a Brexitty type of world - and it is harsh.

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  2. Congratulations!

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  3. I expect the film was quite tough to watch. I got very upset watching "I, Daniel Blake."

    On a brighter note, well done regarding the photograph. It really is excellent.

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    1. I like films that move me in this way. Tough is good in my view. I thought the film was even more gripping and "real" than "I, Daniel Blake."

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  4. Good for you, Mr. P.! It's a very fine photo!

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  5. Congrats on your photographic triumph! That sounds like a really good movie. I'll try to check it out myself.

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    1. Ken Loach is a brilliant director and a champion for the disadvantaged. He goes where other film makers will not venture.

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  6. It's a great photo and congratulations!

    The movie looks good. The gig economy seems like a way for employers to avoid having any responsibility for a decent workplace and decent pay.

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    1. Your last sentence gets to the nub of this film Lily.

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  7. Philip's comment above is spot on. But be careful. That secret service man just underneath the Boris effigy is on to you.

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    1. Thanks for the warning Tasker! I will keep my eyes peeled in case I see that shifty fellow again.

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  8. Congratulations!
    As for "Sorry we missed you", I'm not sure it is my kind of film. I like real characters, but when I go to the cinema, I prefer to be entertained rather than feel sorry for the characters and miserable, knowing how real their situation is to countless people.

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    1. In cinemas I much prefer films that are gritty and "real". I'm not really into fantasy or sugar coating. By the way, I am sure that Shirley would not have liked "Sorry We Missed You" either!

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  9. Hey, ho! Good on you for putting another picture on the Geography site. I think this one won over the most entries ever, eh?

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    1. Well I don't know about that Donna. I am not that big-headed!

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  10. Congratulations! Well done to win photo of the week. It is an excellent photo and probably was not easy to get considering the size of the crowd. Were you standing on top of something in order to get it?

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    1. I was on a raised lawn outside The Houses of Parliament Bonnie. That's how I got that particular perspective on the scene.

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  11. The film you saw is a tear jerker. It seems like it has a good message.

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    1. The director has a reputation for speaking up for those who suffer injustice.

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  12. Well, here we are...walking and mingling among giants! Well done, Yorkie.

    I've missed this movie...I'll have to keep an eye out for it. I never attend cinemas these days...preferring the streaming service. No doubt it will end up on one of those...thanks.

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    1. Yes. I guess if you stay alert every film becomes available on home screens. But I love the quiet darkness of a dark cinema - with no distraction.

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    2. I like the quiet darkness of my own dark room...with no distractions....no people around me.

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  13. Congratulations! It's lovely to have hard work and talent recognised

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    1. This is my first photo victory of the year. I had four winners last year. Thanks for your kind remark Kylie.

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  14. Congratulations, you are a genius with the camera. Well deserved. Did you get a prize?

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    Replies
    1. The prize is simply to judge next week's winner. Geograph is a non-profit organisation.

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