May 1st, 2004

breaking bad

An album, a book, and a film

A week or so ago I posted about Franz Ferdinand. Got their album this week, and I highly recommend it. A new name to watch.

I hear that the BBC are to produce a drama series based on 'The Long Firm' by Jake Arnott. I've read this book, and I thought it was quite special, but I don't know anyone else who has. It's about the intersection between the criminal, sexual and entertainment underworlds of mid 1960's London. 'Long firm' has three meanings at least: a particular kind of con trick, the emergence of the big name gangs in the east end, and a sexual innuendo. Oh, I thought of another meaning, the Tory aristocracy, who figure as a fourth strand within the book. The book is dense with that type of allusion. However, the final section set in Brixton Prison ten years after, which translates the personalities of the 1960s into the sociological lingo of the 1970's makes sense in formal terms (in terms of the subtext of the book as an account of the development of British self-image) but didn't work for me at all.

And thirdly, after two recommendations, an anticipation: I hope to see 'Sleep When I am Dead' shortly. By Mike Hodges, director of Get Carter, my favourite film, and about a guy seeking revenge for his brother's death. God, it could be so good, or so disappointing.