Driving Lessons (8.5/10) review

Driving Lessons (2006)
Tagline: A coming of age story about a shy teenage boy (Grint) trying to escape from the influence of his domineering mother (Linney). His world changes when he begins to work for a retired actress (Walters).

If anyone is wondering why I love British films so much, and why they are so great – go see Driving Lessons. I know why they are great, they seem to have an unlimited stock of great actors in this country. Rupert Grint (Ron from Harry Potter) and Julie Walters (the dancing teacher in Billy Elliot) are doing such a great job in this warm and sympathic story. I highly recommend it. And I wasn’t the only one liking it.

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I’m all at sea

I was clever enough to buy the traintickets up front, so I wouldn’t sleep half of my Saturday away again. The summer has returned to London, and England, so tomorrow we are going to leave the city, and will be all at Sea, for a day.

We just want to sit down somewhere in the sun, recharge and let the waves take care of things in heads. Waves are good. The city is certainly nice, but we need some fresh air now, and a sea view. The pirate has been begging me for weeks to go to the sea, so it’s about time.

More to look forward to : The new series of Extras, starting on Thursday on BBC2. I can’t wait, this time they have people like Sir Ian McKellen, Chris “Coldplay” Martin, Jonathan Ross, Daniel “Potter” Radcliffe, Orlando Bloom and David Bowie himself. Ricky was visiting Jonathan Ross’ talkshow tonight, and I think the neighbours could hear me laughing. He is absolutely the funniest man in the universe.

May your weekend be sunny.

Ready for take off – or random thoughts

Ready for take off

I am running, but I don’t exactly know in what direction. You know the feeling?

At the age of 40 I am going to study on a university for the first time in my life. It starts on the 25th of September, and I look forward to it. It’s part time. You will be encouraged to develop professional writing habits. Sounds good.

I just finished off something I have wanted to do for a long time, but never dared. Now it’s done, it’s out of my hands and I think I feel good about it. I think. I also feel close to a nervous breakdown about it. But hey, 100% of the shots you don’t take …

I am as restless as ever. I had a talk with the editor of my short film @ film school yesterday. About doing the full year course next year, if I should, or should not. And why or why not. And he said he would do it if he was me. But he isn’t me, and I really can’t find out what to do at the moment. It will not be before next fall, if it is going to be. So I might as well relax, let it be for now, stop thinking about it, and start thinking about it again when the time is right, which is next year. Got that? Stop thinking about it!

The set visit I talked about here is for the television series Primeval.
When strange anomalies in time start to appear all over England, Professor Cutter and his team have to help track down and capture all sorts of dangerous prehistoric creatures from Earth’s distant past.

A nice hook: Douglas Henshall who is going to play the main part, worked with Bill on Lawless Heart. I liked him a lot in that one, Douglas I mean. And Bill too, of course.
Don’t know when it is going to be, the set visit, but it is going to be.

Let’s finish with one to think about:
Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music.

I am dancing like crazy. Can you hear the music?

You regret what you don’t do

So on Trafalgar Square I looked up at Nelson, to call down Davy first of all, as they seem to hang around all the time. Understandable, as Nelson is a sea man too, and he even has sailed the Caribbean Sea too, so lots of men talk going on up there. But I also needed Nelsons opinion. I got that, he blinked and nodded.
And when coming home I told Davy about my plans, and he said “Of course you are going to do that, I’ll help you.”
“You think it is going to work ?”
I don’t know, but you have to give it a shot, and see where it ends. What was that saying

“100 percent of the shots you don’t take don’t go in.” ”

And he was right, again. the worst that can happen is that I miss a shot, and that won’t be a disaster.


You don’t regret what you do
You regret what you don’t do

Garbo – Regrets

So I am going to do it, with a major dose of passion. I’ll let you know if I miss or not.

Don’t mess with us


The most annoying thing last Thursday was not the delay, it was the very rude traindriver. While things were very chaotic with lots of platform alterations and cancellations, I just wanted to doublecheck that the train I was in, in fact was the Caterham train. So I asked the traindriver, who passed me on his way to the front of the train.
“Excuse me, what train is this sir?”
“I can’t believe it. You just stepped into a train and you don’t even know where it is going to?” he bitched back.

And I thought “No a******, I take this train every day – just wanted to make sure, with this mess at the station at the moment”. But I didn’t say that.

In stead he said “Where do you need to go?”
And I said “Forget it”
Davy was very angry and so was I.

Today in the Caterham train we saw him again.
“Ahrr!” Davy said.
“No, no, easy now” I tried. But it was too late already.
At Balham station the train stopped working and had to be taken out of service, making the train driver the unpopular person he deserved to be. He had to stay behind, we entered a new train.
I looked at Davy.
He just raised his left eyebrow.
“Yes?” he said half smiling.
“You really are something” I said.

Shorts – and the road ahead

Not being on the film course anymore has the risk of falling into a film making gap. But I am trying hard to stay out of it. The runner job in September is one thing, and yesterday I was at a kick off meeting for a short film project I am going to help on together with some of my class mates. It looks very promising all together, the woman writing the script is both a professional screenwriter and producer. So this is going to be fun. Apart from that I scored a day on a professional film set (feature film, and I forgot the title – and I am only going to watch – not work) somewhere in November. I have no idea where all this is going, and how it is going to end (hopefully it won’t), but again, last Thursday when I heard Jamie Payne talking passionately about his career as a director and filmmaker – my heart goes boom. I know what my ultimate goal is.

One day I want to do my own short film too, which is very easy to say but quite hard to do. The whole point is to find an original idea. There is lots of inspiration on the net, and there are some great shorts out there. Here is one of my absolute favourite ones, only 90 seconds, and made on a low to no budget.

Enjoy : The End.

Absolutely Brilliant.

On the other hand

She : Lip piercing in the middle of her lip, and a tongue piercing.

He: weird metal pins in the back of his neck.
A huge ring in his ear, not on, but in, he had an enormous hole in his left ear.
Tongue piercing. And 2 very sticky and sharp pins coming out of his underlip, and pointing out.

They were obviously very in love, actually.

But how do they do it.


I mean.


(Oh, and dear readers, I have been incredibly stupid. Nothing new there. The last picture I uploaded to my photoblog, the colourful one of 2 chairs in St. James Park, well I have accidently deleted it (because it was on Bill’s site – accident 2 – and deleted it from there not knowing I didn’t make a local copy). How stupid is that. If anyone has this picture in his or hers browser cache, I would be incredibly grateful if you could send it over. I might even give you, ehrm, a kiss if you do. This is cleared with Davy by the way, so don’t worry. Filename is stjamespark.png).

He put a smile upon my face – or – the best birthday present ever


The postman just came, here in the office, delivering a stack of office mail. He does that every day, nothing interesting there really.
From in between this stack of office mail, one of my colleagues fished a slightly different envelope, and handed it over to me. I normally never get post at work, not unless I have ordered something at Amazon or such like, but they never send me handwritten envelopes like this. So I was a bit surprised.
I checked the envelope one more time, this groovy handwriting, haven’t I seen that somewhere before?
Yeah right, don’t be pathetically ridiculous.
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It blinked to me

Stormbreaker Eye
Stormbreaker Eye

I took a weekend off from writing, I had a family member visiting me. We have been touristing London, and I learned one thing: I am still afraid of heights. I climbed the first 30 steps of Monument, but had to turn back, after my legs had turned into strawberry jelly.
So I wasn’t exactly eager to look into the Eye too. But I had promised to go along, and so I went. Standing in the queue for 45 minutes didn’t make it any easier, as I had too much time to think things through. Standing right in front of this huge construction, I suddenly relaxed. Alan Blunt had been there, probably triple checking everything concerning safety, and things could not go wrong now.

The view over London from the Eye is great, it really is, and you can see far on a bright day, which it was. But I was glad they have benches in those capsules so I could sit down (jelly legs), and I was even more glad to have solid ground under my feet again after the 30 minutes in the air. The London Eye is a must-do, should you ever visit London. Not the least because it is friendly. And while we are at it – we visited Westminster Abbey too, but were quite disappointed. It’s expensive (?10) and quite boring.

Latest news on the ongoing flatmate war : the evil flatmate moved out yesterday – but not after pulling some more evil tricks like not wanting to return the keys and things like that. We just hope that the next one moving in is indeed a nice person. Davy and I now will enjoy a week of peace and quietness, we really need this after this nerve wrecking period, and the new one moves in on the 5th of September.

TGITC and 3 emmy’s

The Girl In The Cafe2 more reviews:
Dan liked her
Bjorn did not

The Americans just gave her 3 Emmy’s (Best film, Best script, Best actress (Kelly MacDonald) – I know Bill is missing here, he wasn’t even nominated, but we all know that he made the film – Best film).

If you like to find out what you think, go.

Love can?t change
what?s wrong in the world
But it?s a start

How old are you?

Pirate Diamonds

I know that a lot of people are shocked when I tell them that I am now 40. People tend to think I am younger because I haven’t really grown up yet. I sometimes ask myself how old I am. 40? My god, isn’t it time to grow up then, and stop being pathetic about the pirate and the actor. For a short moment I think that that is exactly what I should do. Cut the crap, come on, get serious. I start thinking about what I should write about in stead, but that doesn’t last long, because when my face looks like I am thinking (I tend to look serious then for a change) Davy normally sees that, find a piece of paper, rolls it into a ball and throws it at me. And that makes me realize that I love to write about both the pirate and the actor, and that’s what I should be doing, for now.

Here is a list of the presents I got:

  • Davy gave me, apart from mental support in the flatmate war (which he is still giving), also something quite close to big trouble. I don’t know how he did it, but he managed to grap a handful of stones from the box with crown jewels (Tower of London). “Someone owned me a favour” he said, well I don’t want to know anything about it, but the gift was fantastic. See picture on top of this post.
  • Emails from people I hadn’t heard from in a long time.
  • Postcards (the real paper ones) and text messages from friends and family.
  • Emails from people I have never met but am going to meet in the near future.
  • All the nice comments on this weblog, thank you!
  • The postcard with all the funny remarks from my younger colleagues (I am by far the oldest there) and a membership for the BFI/NFT I got from them too. (which is really cool !!)
  • And finally an email rolling in (someone has excellent timing) saying that yes they want to have me working as a runner on their shortfilm. (will be shot in September probably, and a runner is not a topjob, basically it’s getting coffee for the camera operator and Director, but hey, you have to start somewhere, and I will probably learn something from it anyway). I am happy about that.

So it was a good day.

Now I know I had promised to upload my 1 minute film, but the thing is, I have no idea how I can convert it from DVD format to avi or something else suitable for youtube. So I need to investigate that a bit, but I promise it will be put up somewhere next week.

42 minus two

I know I am the one supposed to get the presents today, but I have received so many already these last 5 months (in all different shapes and forms), I would like to give one in return.

It is seldom a poem really catches me, especially the ones that don’t rhyme. I normally don’t get them, they seem to be too intellectual for a simple mind like myself. But this one caught me right from the start. Maybe because it is read by such a wonderful voice, but also because it has beautiful lyrics, and because it shows you that it’s about the travel in life itself, and not about the end destination. Somehow that fits quite well in the time and place I am at the moment.

40 (says my passport, way younger say my heart and soul), a milestone, but a good one. Life has never been better. I am glad I tried.

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Get me the Kraken

Imagine your flatmate moving out, and while she was at it cancelling every possible service with it.

Things like : gas, water, telephone, internet would have been closed down a week from now had I not discovered it today.

You can’t imagine how angry I am. And what a hassle it is to get everything reconnected. Davy is off already, getting The Kraken. No f****** mercy this time.

And another one

Another what? Another good review of The Girl In The Cafe from a particapant in the project. I won’t bore you too much with the details, if you want to join, please read on here.

Apart from that I have 3 potential pieces of text that might endup in a post.

1. The Pizza hut waiter who sounded like Alan Rickman

2. 3 things that put a smile on my face

3. Lawrence’s twin brother (in the Cafe)

They are all not great, but they are Bill free (enjoy it while that lasts). Which one do you want ?

I have my very nice clothes on today, and am ready for the red carpet world premiere of “The Beginning” tonight. Hopefully it isn’t the End at the same time.

Love can’t change
what’s wrong in the world
But it’s a start

Filmmaking day 6 : Editing – or 99 soulssssssah

Panico / London Film Academy

Don’t worry it’s not about Davy, even though he likes to think it is. And to be honest, it’s only about 1 soul, not 99. Confused ? Well, hopefully, things will clear up tomorrow or Wednesday.

But our last film making day went with editing the pieces of film we shot 2 weeks ago. In the mean time the film had been developed, and transferred to digital tapes, so the editing could be done on the computer. (For those interested we used Avid Express for it). Since we only had about 4 hours to edit, we had a professional editor doing the actual work, we just told him how we wanted it.

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Bye bye Microsoft Office

Hello Google Spreadsheet (tested and I love it, but I am not a very demanding spreadsheet user), but not the least hello Google Writely (still in Beta).

Admitted Writely (your online Word) has not been fully integrated into Google yet (and doesn’t have the google look either, but it is very Ajaxy), but it is amazing how well it works. You can actually mail your word doc to it and edit it online or create new documents from scratch. Perfect for CV’s and other documents you want to have available wherever you go.

It is also geared up for collaborative editing, and according to the website 50 people can edit it, at the same time. (they have to be in different sections of the document though to make this work). But being able to share documents like this, is a big step forward if you ask me.

Also on it’s way Google Disk, online storage and a Google like Powerpoint program.

Microsoft Office is going to have a hard time.

The other Scot

The proud pirate

“These pictures on your wall, who is he?”
“Oh, him. He is, well he’s someone, I admire. You are related to him did you know? And he has some Scottish blood in him too, half of it to be precise”
“You’ve made a lot of artwork with him on it”
“Yes, it’s just, you know, killing time. And sometimes something nice comes out of it, and then it ends up on the wall. It was so empty when I moved in here.”
“Do you, erhm, do you ever make things like this of other people?”
“Yes I do sometimes. It has to be a person I like though.”
“Ah, I understand”
“And it does require you to sit still for a while you know, think you can do that?”
“Wha, what?”
“Favourite colour?”
“Oh, erhm Blue.”
“Blue, that’s mine too. OK, sit still then, and give me some time”
“I didn’t mean to, I mean I don’t think I will look that good”
“Oh yes, you will, now, let me look at you.”

“Here you go, come and have a look. Like it? I think you look great in blue.”
“Oh, it’s, it’s so … The hearts, are they, why, do you really …?”
“like you? I do.”

Oh – we found the nicest flatmate to come and live with us. It’s a girl, Davy picked her. And there are more good things bubbling at the moment.