(dir. Peter Weir) (1975) St. Valentine’s Day, 1900. The young ladies of Appleyard College are treated to a picnic at Hanging Rock, a volcanic pile in the heart of the Victorian countryside, near Mount Macedon. There is twittering around the teacups, too much cake and Australian sunshine, and whilst the party are having an al fresco siesta, people go missing. But while the film has aspects of a whodunit or a thriller, it cannot be categorised because it simply transcends classification. As F.R Leavis said of Wuthering Heights, you can call this a sport. Totally magical,…Continue Reading →
(by A. J. Ayer) It is a pleasure to read Ayer’s demolition of metaphysics, even though it leaves an arid philosophical landscape. Written in 1936, a time when perhaps we might have done with a small dollop of silly spirituality, Ayer has the cracking lines: ‘Our charge against the metaphysician is not that he attempts to employ the understanding in a field where it cannot profitably venture, but that he produces sentences which fail to conform to the conditions under which alone a sentence can be literally significant. Nor are we ourselves obliged to talk nonsense in order to show…Continue Reading →
(by Kingsley Amis) The landlord of “The Green Man” pub has an alarming drinking problem and wandering hands. Also, there is some monolithic horticultural product about, that could cause further alarm. Amis senior’s famous book, Lucky Jim is superior to this slight work but this novella is so weird and perverse it is almost decadent.Continue Reading →
(by A.N. Wilson) A beautiful & rich review of Victorian and Edwardian thinking, as God’s life support was unplugged and how later generations may come, in time, to feel the need to apply resuscitation. As Kenneth Clark observed, heroic materialism and Marxism aren’t enough. We need something more.Continue Reading →
(by Hermann Hesse) Hesse’s ideation of his own life as a monk is a heavy but worthwhile read.Continue Reading →
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