A Study in Sherlock -UHArts Film Season

12745715_10153227532386650_8874645238768832369_nBetween March 3rd and March 24th, the University of Hertfordshire will be screening four classic Sherlock Holmes films. Hosted and organised by Danny Graydon (http://www.dannygraydon.com/) as part of the UHArts department, the season brings key moments in the career of Holmes to the attention of both students and the general public in an exhilarating and easy to attend manner.

The season highlights corner stone works such as The Hound of the Baskervilles, the delightful celebration of Holmes in The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, a modern take of his long standing adversary in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, and a reflected look of the aged detective in the wonderful Mr. Holmes. Each film provides an insight into the character and the attributes that have captured our attention and made him a lynch pin in popular culture. The first two events also bring with them spectacular guest speakers, including renowned Sherlock Holmes expert, David Stuart Davies (http://www.davidstuartdavies.co.uk/) and the incredible writer, Ian Edginton (https://twitter.com/ianedginton).

Each film will be screened on the College lane campus, in the FMM building, B01.

Films and dates:

March 3rd – The Hound of the Baskervilles (1959). dir. Terence Fisher.

Starring Peter Cushing, Andre Morell, and Christopher Lee. This Hammer Horror classic, sees a nobleman, threatened by a family curse of his newly inherited estate, employs the help of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in an attempt to solve the case and save his life.

– Opening speech by David Stuart Davies.

March 10th – The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes (1970). dir. Billy Wilder.

Starring Robert Stephens, Christopher Lee and Colin Blakely. A bored Sherlock eagerly takes the case of Gabrielle Valladon, after an attempt on her life. A search for her missing husband becomes a quest for Loch Ness and the legendary creature.

– Opening speech by Ian Edginton

March 17th – Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011). dir. Guy Ritchie.

Starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, and Jared Harris. In a modern take on the lives of Holmes and Dr. Watson, the pair take on their arch-nemesis, Professor Moriarty, along with the help of by Holmes’ older brother Mycroft and a gypsy named Simza.

March 24th – Mr. Holmes (2015). dir. Bill Condon.

Starring Ian McKellen, Laura Linney and Hiroyuki Sanada. The film portrays an aged Holmes, struggling with dementia and reminiscing on his final case. Showing both Holmes at his strongest and his darkest hours, while imparting his slowly decaying wisdom to a young fan and son of his housekeeper.

Tickets are £4 and are available both on the door and through the University website. http://www.herts.ac.uk/about-us/arts-and-galleries/whats-on/film

Why I will never appreciate The X-Files Revival.

x-files-exclusive-12012015Upon leaving the university for the evening, I entered into a conversation discussing The X-Files with a friend. With the current airing of The X-Files revival, it’s a pretty hot topic right now, with people discussing how it relates to the previous series and, especially in my friends case, how exciting it is to finally have it return. Discussing all of its connections to the original and just how much it means to those that saw the original as it was coming out. Unlike my friend, I am only just watching the original series for the first time, at the time of writing this I’m half way through season 2. It hit me after the conversation, that even when I have seen all 9 original series, the 2 films and become completely up to date, I will never appreciate the revival as much as they do. The passion to which my friend describes the original series in regards to the revival, is something that can only be achieved by having a long standing connection to the franchise, as well as the anticipation for a continuation. With my adoption of the franchise having only just taken effect, (which is really shocking in hindsight, due to my love of Science Fiction, Conspiracy theories and FBI dramas) in a time where the series can be easily accessed online or on Blu-Ray/DVD (For the record, the Blu-ray box set is high on my list right now of things to buy when I have the spare cash (Spare Cash, that’s an odd thought)), I have all 9 seasons and films readily available and by the time I reach the end, all six episodes of the revival will be just as easy to access. In essence, I have to wait for nothing. The notion of The X-Files returning is simply a fact that I can have no emotional connection too, I can fondly remember discussions of it in the future or ones that I have overheard now, but I will never appreciate it as much as others.

I am far from the only person to experience this, in fact it’s something that can be seen all the time. In the case of Star Wars, People who were children when the prequels came out will never understand the hatred that those that grew up with the original films feel towards The Phantom Menace. To them, it’s just a bad film in the franchise, but to those who waited 16 years for any form of continuation on the screen, it’s a whole other matter. See the episode “Change” of Spaced for a genuine reaction between generations to The Phantom Menace, in fact, just go watch Spaced. It’s a damn good series.

It’s an odd sensation, and one I have expressed several times with formats or shows I grew up with and my younger brother’s discovery of them. As someone who grew up in a world just prior to cable TV, satellite and the internet becoming household necessities, its difficult to explain how exciting it was to sit down every week for a new episode of a show that had already aired weeks or months ago in America or even years ago from elsewhere, especially when you only had 4 TV channels. Anime fans growing up with subtitled episodes being released hours after its Japanese airing, will never fully appreciate the old days of Fox Kids, Manga Entertainment and bootleg VHS’.

The Times They are a changin’.

Now, enough of the long rant. The X-Files is calling me.