Stephen Fry

Bombay Bicycle Club unveil two new videos and iTunes Festival date

Bombay Bicycle Club unveil two new videos and iTunes Festival date

Bombay Bicycle Club unveil two new videos and iTunes Festival date

Bombay Bicycle Club unveil two new videos and iTunes Festival date.  To support the forthcoming release of their ace new acoustic album ‘Flaws’ Bombay Bicycle Club have unveiled a series of videos of them playing key tracks from the album live and in unique locations around North London. The YouTube URL and embed codes for the first videos – ‘Ivy & Gold’ (the album’s first single and currently on the A playlist at Radio One) and ‘Swansea’ (written by Jack but using lyrics from the Joanna Newsom track of the same name) – are below. The band play an iTunes Festival headline slot on Sunday, 18th July @ Roundhouse. I have a handful of review ticket – if you want to pop along/ send a reviewer then give me a shout asap. They are performing alongside Everything Everything and Stephen Fry.

July acoustic tour dates:

MON 12th JULY ‘ MANCHESTER, ST PHILIPS CHURCH / GUESTLIST NOW CLOSED
TUE 13th JULY ‘ MANCHESTER, ST PHILIPS CHURCH / GUESTLIST NOW CLOSED
WED 14th JULY ‘ BRISTOL, ST GEORGES
THU 15th JULLY – BIRMINGHAM, ST PAULS CHURCH
MON 19TH JULY ‘ GATESHEAD, SAGE 2
TUE 20TH JULY ‘ NORWICH, ARTS CENTRE
WED 21ST JULY ‘ BRIGHTON, ST GEORGES CHURCH / GUESTLIST NOW CLOSED
THU 22nd JULY ‘ LONDON, UNION CHAPEL
FRI 23RD JULY ‘ LONDON, UNION CHAPEL ** SOLD OUT ** / GUESTLIST NOW CLOSED

Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland. There’ll be no malice from this end because we’re a far cry from Blunderland.  Still, despite its visual inventiveness, Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland lacks the exuberance of his best films or the splendid, bracing nonsensicalness of the source material.   It’s a sequel of sorts to the whimsically absurdist Lewis Carroll children’s stories, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking Glass (1871) from one of our most fascinating and creative directors. And one who seems perfectly suited to the material, which has been adapted for the screen a couple dozen times, in versions live-action and animated and everything in between. Alice in Wonderland is an eye-popping, CGI-enhanced, 3-D, surrealist extravaganza and family adventure fantasy that tweaks the form while remaining true to the spirit of Carroll’s vision. Mia Wasikowska plays Alice Kingsleigh, a conflicted nineteen-year-old, plagued by bad dreams and about to reluctantly embark on a marriage arranged by her widowed mother. She takes another tumble down into the underland realm she remembers as Wonderland for the first time since she, as a young girl, followed a white rabbit (Michael Sheen) down the rabbit hole into the magically surreal queendom. So, she discovers, it wasn’t just a dream.  This trip the bride-to-be learns that, to restore order to this strange and wondrous place, she must slay a fearsome dragon, and thus free Wonderland by ending the reign of terror of the despotic and dyspeptic Red Queen, played by Helena Bonham Carter (and having more fun than anybody on-screen or in the audience), who has seized power from her sister, the kindly White Queen, played by Anne Hathaway.  So Alice turns for help to Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter — a literally colorful (green eyes, orange hair, and rainbow skin tones) split personality who’s, well, mad as a hatter — and the array of Wonderland creatures, including the Cheshire Cat (Stephen Fry), Tweedledum and Tweedledee (Matt Lucas and Matt Lucas), the March Hare (Paul Whitehouse), Bayard the Bloodhound (Timothy Spall), and Absolem the Caterpillar (Alan Rickman). And not only does she come up against the imposing and big-headed Red Queen, she also has to deal with the Knave of Hearts (Crispin Glover) and the dragon Jabberwocky (Christopher Lee). Burton (Batman, Beetlejuice, Big Fish, Planet of the Apes), twisting perspectives into three kinds of pretzels, works from a female-empowerment screenplay by Linda Woolverton that provides an emotional underpinning and a fluid narrative so that the story is more than just Alice serving as a tour guide as she wanders through a succession of bizarre encounters. Ironically, however, the who-needs-a-plot charm of the quirky original stories, dominated by arbitrary dream logic rather than common sense, gets somewhat compromised as the film becomes formulaically shapely. We wish the film would get “curiouser and curioser,” but it does just the opposite as it builds to its conventional climax. As has been true of many of Burton’s movies, the memorability and impact of the set pieces is stronger than the dramatic arc and narrative continuity. That is, we’re more wide-eyed and enthralled than emotionally invested. So we end up watching the visually splendiforous AIW and admiring its merits without quite tumbling down the rabbit hole ourselves. Pity. Whether it was a good idea to make Alice a savior on a heroic quest — something we’ve probably seen far too much of on the movie screen in recent years — is one question. Regardless of the answer, however, the superb Mia Wasikovska brings shades of sweetness and strength to her performance, lending Victorian-era heroine Alice three-dimensional life, handling her character’s learning curve with aplomb, and alerting us to this young Australian actress’s vast potential.  Burton’s seventh collaboration with Depp (including Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood, Sweeney Todd, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) finds Depp uncharacteristically unfocused. Burton finds plenty — too much actually — for the Mad Hatter to do so that Depp avoids the sidelines, but whatever commercial wisdom is being applied, the Hatter’s ubiquitousness is not really dramatically justified. Tim Burton’s moderately bewitching gothic fantasy, Alice in Wonderland, doesn’t fall into a rabbit hole, but does fall a bit short of wonderful.

The real and the real fakes on Twitter.

christopherwalkenA Friday piece in The New York Times exposes what we all sort of knew already: some of those celebrity Twitter accounts are actually ghostwritten. Other ones are fake. That guy twittering as Christopher Walken is not actually Christopher Walken.  It’s not terribly surprising. Nobody actually thought, for example, that the official Britney Spears Twitter account was actually written by the pop singer herself. But some others, like rapper 50 Cent’s, come across as fairly authentic to the degree that some fans could be miffed to find that it’s actually the head of his digital-media team doing the twittering. And it does seem a little bit unnerving that “ghost-Twittering” is now an actual job skill for some freelance writers.  See, here’s where the dissonance lies. Twitter has become one of the hallmarks of the Web 2.0 “transparency” movement, recommended by new-media consultants left and right as a way for businesses and brands (not to mention celebrities) to put their real faces forward. It’s been effective image repair for tarnished brands such as that of cable giant Comcast, which runs an account called “Comcast Cares” to conduct customer service; then there’s former White House strategist Karl Rove, whose shadowy, man-behind-the-curtain persona from the Bush administration is a far cry from the Twitter account with which he converses with followers, hosts trivia contests, and debates which third-party Twitter apps are the most efficient.  If that’s your opinion of what Twitter is or should be, ghostwriting just doesn’t seem like it’s playing by the rules.   Basketball player Shaquille O’Neal, whose @THE_REAL_SHAQ Twitter account has become one of the service’s most popular, seemed to disapprove of Twitter accounts that aren’t actually written by the people whose names they bear. “It’s 140 characters. It’s so few characters,” he told the Times. “If you need a ghostwriter for that, I feel sorry for you.” 

The real and the real fakes on Twitter
1. Britney Spears Britney Spears is a celebrity of the first order. But if you read through her profile, you quickly realize that she’s only tweeting a portion of the time. When she’s not, other people in her entourage are. Britney signs all her tweets with “~Britney.” Seems possible.

Verdict: @BritneySpears is the real Britney Spears.

2. Jimmy Fallon Jimmy Fallon tweets on the @JimmyFallon Twitter account. There’s no doubt about it. He talks about things only Jimmy could shed light on. And most importantly, he talks about his tweeting on his show, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.” No worries here: it’s the real guy.

Verdict: @JimmyFallon is really JimmyFallon.

3. Shaquille O’Neal Dubbed @THE_REAL_SHAQ, Shaquille O’Neal’s Twitter account is one of the most entertaining in this roundup. Shaq posts pictures of himself, sends brief messages out to followers, and unleashes one-liners that will make you chuckle. I don’t think there’s any debating that @THE_REAL_SHAQ is the real Shaq.

Verdict: @THE_REAL_SHAQ is really him.

4. Lance Armstrong Lance Armstrong is definitely tweeting on the @LanceArmstrong account. He tweets about his travel around the U.S. He talks about where he’s riding today and most importantly, he uploads personal pictures to his TwitPic account.

Verdict: @LanceArmstrong is the real deal.

5. Ellen DeGeneres Ellen DeGeneres is tweeting on her show’s Twitter profile, @TheEllenShow. On multiple occasions she has said on her show that she tweets and a recent update provided a TwitPic link to an image of her mother. She also tends to make references to events in her life that others might not know.

Verdict:@TheEllenShow is the real Ellen DeGeneres

6. Perez Hilton @PerezHilton is updated by gossip blogger Perez Hilton. There’s no doubt about it. He tweets about blog posts he’s writing and discusses celebrities with his followers. Plus, the awkward clip-by-clip image on his profile of him dancing could only come from the source.

Verdict: @PerezHilton is the real gossip blogger.

7. Ryan Seacrest Though his Twitter profile says it’s the official Ryan Seacrest profile, I’m not convinced that he’s really tweeting. Many of the tweets in Seacrest’s stream come from “Team Seacrest” (whatever that is) and others come from his radio show producers. Ostensibly, those that don’t have a signature are Seacrest. But even that is up for debate.

Verdict: @RyanSeacrest is the celebrity’s real account, but he might not be tweeting.

8. Demi Moore If you want to read what Demi Moore is up to on Twitter, the only way to find out is to follow @mrskutcher. She updates her stream with information about her life that only she would know. She even posts pictures that prove it’s her.

Verdict: @mrskutcher is the real Demi Moore.

9. Stephen Fry After reading through English actor and comedian Stephen Fry’s tweets, there’s little doubt that he’s the person behind @StephenFry. Whether it’s updates about recording radio spots or tweets about filming scenes, Fry delivers insider information that proves it’s him.

Verdict: @StephenFry is the real deal.

10. Wil Wheaton Best known for his portrayal of Wesley Crusher on “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” Wil Wheaton has quickly become a favorite among Twitter users for his love of tech. And that shines through in all his authentic tweets. Whether it’s a discussion about Atari or the iPhone, Wil always has something interesting to say.

Verdict: @Wilw is operated by Wil Wheaton.
The real fakes
The most-followed celebrities are really tweeting. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some fakes. Here’s a quick list of some fake celebrity profiles you’ll need to watch out for.

Christopher Walken Christopher Walken’s Twitter profile is easily one of the funniest on Twitter. But it’s also a fake. At least it’s good for a laugh.

George W. Bush The George W. Bush Twitter account is rife with veiled insults of our former president and some “misquotes” that he doesn’t like. Yeah, it’s a fake.

Megan Fox Dubbed @The_Megan_Fox, the fake Megan Fox Twitter account is, at times, sexual in nature. But when the person updating the profile is done discussing her body, it can be quite funny.

Stephen Colbert There are dozens of fake Stephen Colbert profiles on Twitter. But the @StephenColbert account is the most popular and, arguably, the best of the bunch. The user cracks quite a few jokes, sounds like Colbert, and unleashes some one-liners that would make Ronald Reagan proud. If you want to follow the real Stephen Colbert, click here.

Tina Fey Tina Fey’s Twitter profile is about as fake as they come. The person impersonating her makes off-hand remarks about Tina and her life, but most of the updates are strange discussions on candy and food.

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