Film4’s 50 Films to See Before You Die

I caught the second half of “Film4’s 50 Films to See Before You Die” on Saturday Night.

Unlike the usual Top 50 type shows this was voted for by “a panel of film experts” rather than the general public – and hence it didn’t contain Titanic.

I shamelessly lifted the list below (and the idea for this entry) from Cowfish’s most excellent posting along the same lines.

He went to the trouble of marking which ones he had seen in bold and came up with (as he says) “a fairly respectable 28”.

I did the same and came up with a shockingly awful 9.

Fortunately, Film Four is now free (the show was essentialy a promo for said freeness).

So I can start to improve on that number right-away (Apocalypse Now is on this Friday night).

2001: A Space Odyssey (I always seem to miss this when it’s on)

A Bout de Souffle

Aguirre, the Wrath of God


All About Eve

Apartment, The

Apocalypse Now


Black Narcissus

Boyz N the Hood


Breakfast Club, The



City of God

Come and See

Dawn of the Dead

Donnie Darko

Erin Brockovich

Fanny and Alexander

Fight Club

Heavenly Creatures


Ipcress File, The

King of Comedy, The

Ladykillers, The

Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India

Lost in Translation



Mulholland Drive

Night at the Opera

North by Northwest

Pink Flamingos

Player, The

Princess Mononoke

Pulp Fiction

Raising Arizona

Royal Tenenbaums, The


Searchers, The

Secrets and Lies

Sexy Beast

Shawshank Redemption, The

Terminator 2: Judgement Day

This Sporting Life

Three Colours Blue

Touch of Evil



See that show on TV last night?

One of the great things about Sky+ is that you can watch your favourite shows when you feel like it and not when the show is actually broadcast.

This is great and means I don’t miss a show just because I’m out or busy or whatever (like VCRs, only useful).

But it also means that I usually end up watching a show 2-3 days later.

One of the annoying side-effects of this is that at work the next day when someone asks me “Did you see Nathan Barley?” I have to say “No I didn’t but I have recorded it so please don’t tell me about it”. Which annoys the hell out of the person I am talking to.

As more and more people go down the PVR route this sort of thing will become more common.

Asking someone if they saw some show on TV last night may well seem like a strange question in five or ten years time.

Watching Paint Dry

One wall. Some paint. You decide.

As the country groans at the return of Big Brother, UKTV Style introduces a new take on the reality show genre. We’ve all seen the shows involving celebrities in the jungle, husbands swapping their wives, rugby players being transformed into drag artists and now it’s time for something new. It’s time for Watching Paint Dry.

Via Spinneyhead.

Geeks night in

It must be Computer Night on BBC4 tonight.

9:00 pm Tetris: From Russia With Love

Tetris is a computer game. Whoever comes into contact with it is gripped by its simplicity, which belies a complex psychological power that prompted a global battle as gripping as the game itself!

10:00 pm Hard Drive Heaven: Time Shift

History Of The Home Computer: The story of the PC, from a time when computers were the size of a room, to the current variety of ever smaller and more powerful models, central to the modern world.

10:30 pm Trigger Happy: The Irresistible Rise…

…Of The Video Game. Author Steven Poole examines the creative explosion occurring in videogames and the impact this major new form of entertainment is having on contemporary culture.

As usual, all shows repeated over and over again if you miss them tonight.

BBC Four

Top 100 Singles

Anyone see the Top 100 Singles last night on Channel 4?

It was great.

Apart from all the has-beens talking about the first time they heard the song when they were in school.

And that Celine Dion woman, Lady in Red and bloody Careless Whisper.

And to be honest, the show would have been much better if there had been no talking at all and they’d just played each track in its entirety.

But apart from that, it was great.

Celebrities are stupid shocker!

The Pilot Show.


Fool minor celebrities and members of public into thinking they are auditioning for new TV shows.

Use audition footage to try to show that these celebrities and members of public are stupid.

It doesn’t work though.

If you pretend to be a TV producer, offering people money to appear in your crap shows, and celebrities sit there and say "Great idea", it doesn’t prove they are stupid, in fact it proves the opposite.

The stupid thing to do would be to say, "That’s a crap idea, you lot are idiots, I don’t want your money" and walk out.

Saying that though, the guitar-smashing sketch was hilarious.

And I, for one…

Ten reasons why Deep Space Homer is my favourite Simpsons episode ever.

  1. They’re a colorful bunch. They’ve been dubbed "the Three Musketeers". Heh heh heh. And we laugh legitimately. There’s a mathematician, a different _kind_ of mathematician, and a statistician.
  2. You know, Homer, when I found out about this, I went through a wide range of emotions.

    First I was nervous, then anxious, then wary, then apprehensive, then…kind of sleepy, then worried, and then concerned, but now I realize that being a spaceman is something you have to do.

  3. Second comes right after first.
  4. I believe there is still a little something called "The Swimsuit Competition"
  5. Gentlemen, you’ve both worked very hard. And in a way, you’re both winners. But in another more accurate way, Barney is the winner.
  6. Default? Woo hoo! The two sweetest words in the English language: de-fault! De-fault! De-fault!
  7. You’re right, Marge. Just like the time I could have met Mr. T at the mall. The entire day I kept saying, "I’ll go a little later. I’ll go a little later." And then when I got there, they told me he’d just left. And when I asked the mall guy if he would ever come back again, he said he didn’t know.
  8. Three, two, one, make rocket go now!
  9. Careful! They’re ruffled.

    And, of course, my favourite Simpsons quote ever…

  10. And I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords.

Thanks to The Simpson’s Archive for helping me get the exact wording for each quote.

That’s not a dummy!

I watched a documentary on UK Horizons last night called Autopsy, about the work of American pathologists.

One of the cases was about a dummy in a fairground in California that turned out to be a real body.

It was spotted when a film crew for the show Six Million Dollar Man (this was in 1976) took a closer look and spotted a bone sticking out of an arm that had fallen off.

The body was that of Elmer McCurdy, a bank robber who had died in 1911.

Somehow his embalmed body ended up in a travelling sideshow and it was gradually forgotten that it was the body of a man.

The body then managed to take a bit of a tour around the US, even apparently appearing in a TV show as a prop and in a wax museum.

It had been in the "Laff in the Dark" ghost train ride in the Nu-Pike Amusement Park when it was finally discovered to be a real body and not just a dummy.

What an incredible story!

Thanks to the following sites for filling in the blanks in a fascinating tale.

Urban Legend: Is This Hanged Man Real?

Elmer McCurdy’s arm fell off

A Dummy – Dead and Alive!