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Profile for Robert Blunden > Reviews

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Reviews Written by
Robert Blunden (UK)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something to write home about !, 7 Sept. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Love these pens. The ink flows fine, but not on my hands and my writing is effortless and usually looks good. I often send a few to my aged aunt who has very poor sight. She loves them as much as me. I mean she loves the pens as much as I do. She loves me too of course. Me, I just love everyone !

Patti Smith: Land 250
Patti Smith: Land 250
by Patti Smith
Edition: Hardcover

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Snapshots of a rare life, 17 Jan. 2011
This review is from: Patti Smith: Land 250 (Hardcover)
A more beautiful book than I had expected. Large hardbacks have substance. Patti Smith says she is not a photographer. Well she takes pictures doesn't she ? Although these are technically not sophisticated photographs, they have a beauty and atmosphere that is hard not to feel. Together these fragments of a life make up something rather special. Patti Smith is hard to define and has avoided commercial exploitation. Without a fixed label, she is hard to focus on. But this book of fascinating images does give a good picture of this rare woman's life. I find these images very appealing. I find these glimpses into a rare life extraordinary. They say there is no smoke without fire. I say there are no beautiful images without an extraordinary person behind the camera. I recommend this book to anyone with eyes to see and a heart to see more than others.

The Amazing Howard Hughes
The Amazing Howard Hughes

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Quite Amazing !, 6 Jun. 2010
This review is from: The Amazing Howard Hughes (DVD)
Howard Hughes did indeed lead a quite amazing life. But this film falls far short of being amazing. It ought to be much, much better given it was based upon the book written by Noah Dietrich, probably the man who best knew Hughes right from his youth until they had a fall out. Okay, he lost touch with Hughes when the old guy was really going crazy, but unappreciated Noah was a hard working business man who alone created much of the cash flow from Hughes' tool company that paid for his later mad lifestyle.
This film does attempt to cover most of the usual key events in Hughes' life, but its just not very convincing. For me, Aviator captures much better the man and his ambitions. Its hard to put my finger on it but this film is just not quite convincing enough. Its probably pretty accurate. Maybe its just not very entertaining, unless of course you know nothing about Hughes. But as someone who has read most of the books, this fails to add anything.
If you really want to buy the DVD, don't let me stop you. I've seen a lot worse. But my review is the first on this site and I can't help but wonder why that is ? Perhaps the movie is not bad enough to be reviewed, and just not good enough either ?
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 3, 2010 9:46 PM GMT

Van Gogh [1991] [DVD]
Van Gogh [1991] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Jacques Dutronc
Offered by FilmloverUK
Price: £36.99

10 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too long. Too French. And too much Soup !, 4 Mar. 2010
This review is from: Van Gogh [1991] [DVD] (DVD)
This is an expensive dvd to buy but you do get quite a lot of film for your money. This film seems to be held as one of the best depictions of the real life of Vincent Van Gogh. I can understand why. The film strikes me as very French as it gets deep down inside Vincent's day to day life with all the domestic details thrown in. Some may find this fascinating. Others may find it tedious. I was fascinated at first but then boredom set in. After all, there are so many scenes sitting around a wooden table and eating countless bowls of soup. Soup rarely makes good cinema. Not even French Onion.

In the film's favour, it really does make a very brave attempt to show us the real man behind the fantasy that history has painted. Perhaps I am just a little too attracted to this fantasy than I care to admit. I just felt the day to day grind was just too much of a grind to watch. And there was not enough art for me. I wanted buckets of colour. Sure, Vincent does have to eat, he does have to deal with domestic issues, and no doubt he had to visit the WC now and then, but I don't really want to see this to remind me that he was a real living man, almost like you and me. I thought Lust For Life was too much fantasy. Well, maybe this is just too little fantasy. But it's enjoyable enough and often visually stunning. I'd just prefer a few more croutons in my soup. Or just less soup...

Lust For Life [DVD] [1956]
Lust For Life [DVD] [1956]
Dvd ~ Kirk Douglas
Offered by Magic Movies Ltd
Price: £23.93

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great...., 24 Feb. 2010
This review is from: Lust For Life [DVD] [1956] (DVD)
I procrastinate a lot. But I recently got around to watching this 1956 film version of the life and work of Vincent Van Gogh. I have long been a keen 'fan' of Van Gogh's paintings but the ever growing myth about the man and his madness has long put me off watching this film. But I decided I needed to see what I was missing, and I'm glad I did. I learned nothing new ( besides how infuriating it can be to navigate some of the menu options ), but it is a good film in that it does indeed portray the popular view of the tormented and mad genius and the characters he came into contact with. His brother of course is perhaps the real hero and maybe one day a book or film might be done more from that angle, after all there are more close friends and relatives who suffer than we like to imagine when 'good art' is at stake. But here we have a very watchable film of the man and all the myth and characature that goes with it, seen from the nineteen-fifties. To be honest, the film has aged well as much of the myth still lurks in 2010. Vincent's letters ( which I saw in Amsterdam last year ) are a testimony to the dedication and sanity of this visionary artist. But we like our artists to be a little mad. And preferably dead too. For us, Vincent provides a feast. The film is not the real man. Not the real Vincent. But its a nice introduction and captures vividly the man as portrayed most commonly. I want to NOT like the film but I cannot help but recommend it, if only as a way to introduce you to the art and one view of the man who deserves to be remembered, and loved still. Yes, its taken me fifty-four years to get around to watching this film. But I have been quite busy.

A Crisis of Brilliance
A Crisis of Brilliance
by David Haycock
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.00

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliance Indeed !, 24 Feb. 2010
This review is from: A Crisis of Brilliance (Hardcover)
I am told I often expect too much in life and when looking back over the past inparticular. But I have been overjoyed in reading my way through this wonderful book. This captures, for me, everything so special about Old England, that which the first world war did its utmost to eradicate, and the culture and countryside that Sassoon and Blunden loved so deeply. It used to be hard to distinguish the English Character from the English Countryside. Now, both these concepts mean nothing to most people. But I digress. Or do I ? Art so much reflects life and perhaps our aspirations. The personal struggles, the occasional rejoicing and the often times tragedies are woven in this book in loving colour. The reader cannot help to fall in love with some, or all of the five artists. We all have our favourites of course. This book reminds me why I love certain painters and has made me determined to learn more about others. This is not just a book but a vehicle to take you back and share the wonder of five very special lives. For me its the chance to remind me what I care about most deeply and what still matters in this much changed world. There are Spencers, Nashes, and Carringtons with us now. Just walk across the fields and open your eyes. Be part of the wonder...... Yes, indeed a book well worth buying. I hope you find something special therein too.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 30, 2010 11:55 PM BST

No Invitation Required: The Pelham Cottage Years
No Invitation Required: The Pelham Cottage Years
by Lady Annabel Goldsmith
Edition: Hardcover

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gentle but somewhat dull, 15 Jan. 2010
I knew Annabel Goldsmith had led a really fascinating life and so I was expecting quite a lot. Her life with Jimmy Goldsmith was never dull and her children were all good looking and brim full of potential and energy. I have to say I was rather disappointed by the book. It failed to capture my attention at any point and it just failed to entertain me. It did not even open to the door to the supposedly magical world at Pelham Cottage. I think the author has simply struggled to convey the wonder of the years she spent at this clearly very special house. I failed to be convinced. I failed to be conveyed to this place she held so dear. And I failed to be entertained by the characters and close friends we are introduced to. Perhaps I am getting old.But it is a very gentle and undemanding read and probably one that benefits from more than one reading. A quiet book amidst a life of chaos. Perhaps Pelham Cottage was like that.

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