Son of Rambow

I went to a free screening of this movie last night. I can’t recommend it enough. It’s funny and touching. The director, Garth Jennings, did a fantastic job with the children. Jennings also directed Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy. A lot of people panned on that one, but for me he did an excellent job with one of my favorite books.

Two boys make a film based on Rambo: First blood.

Being a free screeing in the city the audience was a lot more diverse than most. People really seemed to love the slapstick humor. I found it to be a bit disturbing and uncomfortable. I think that’s exactly what Jennings intended. Both of the boys come from disturbing and uncomfortable circumstances. One from a religeous cult and the other from a parentless family.

Woah there cowboy, Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy was a radio series which later became a variety of other products. I don’t recall the film being based off the books, rather it was (like all the Hitch Hikers stuff) a fresh take on the source material, and like all the fresh takes was markedly inferior.

As for this film, I missed it God damnit. Now I’ll have to rent.

This is possibly the best film I’ve seen this year and the only one I’ve seen multiple times in the cineplex. I whole-heartedly recommend seeing it.

I don’t get the enthusiasm with which some people have endorsed this film. I thought it was a sustained but meandering piece of nostalgic whimsy - totally empty and faintly saccharine - and with child actors. Oh goody.

I also don’t recognise the England in which the characters are growing up. That really wrankles for some reason - not because every film should be in a realist mode but because, as a period set fiction, it should do more to toss a few 80s records on the soundtrack to conjure a sense of place and time.

Compared to something as dramatically powerful, provoking and funny as This is England, which also happens to be about growing up in the 80s in the UK, Rambow is a cloying guff of a film.

I also found Hammer & Tongs take on Hitchhikers deeply distressing.

What? Are you saying the books aren’t the original source material?

Yeah, I’m pretty sure the BBC radio play was written first. Most of the cliffhangers with nonsensical resolutions (early example being Arthur and Ford thrown off the Vogon ship) are episode breaks from the radio play.

And in many cases, they were largely written on the fly, sometimes on the day of taping. Adams never got the hang of deadlines, any more than Arthur did Mondays.

I had the same thing with Ashes to Ashes vs. Life on Mars. I could suspend disbelief in LOM so much better than the 80s, which I remember pretty well.

Firstly, I am not a cowboy. I don’t even own one of those fancy hats.

Secondly, I didn’t realize the radio plays came first. I’ve listened to them and read all the books. How did I not realize? Weird. I did like the film version and I wish they’d do another. So there.

Not having grown up in England I couldn’t tell you how true-to-period this film was. All I know is I thought it was cute, and touching, and funny. It made a really great date night plan.

I’ve read the books and didn’t like them (and some editions have a note from Adams talking about how he doesn’t remember all the stuff he wrote, so he’s changed bits… like the entire second radio series becoming one paragraph). I’ve watched the TV series and didn’t like it. I didn’t like the film.

But the radio show, the original source which came before all others books included, that is essential listening. It is incredibly funny.

I’ve listened to the entire series many, many times over and it’s better each time.


Am I the only one who liked everything though? radio, tv, infocom game, movie?

Was that semi-recent HH game ever made (last what 8 years at some point?)? I still have my arthur dent towel from whatever e3 that was.

I still have my ball of fluff and Don’t Panic button from the Infocom adventure.

what, you lost the peril sensitive sunglasses and the microscopic space fleet?

I’ve liked them all too Moore, you’re not alone.

Is the info com game the text game back in the Apple II days? I had the worst time trying to get the Babelfish into my ear.