Monthly Archives: September 2006

Cine-tastic!

Today, we went to the cinema not once but twice! I don’t think I’ve ever been to a commercial cinema more than once in a day (unless I was working there).

We had UGC cards for about 2 years but stopped going because there were very few films on that we wanted to watch. We watched Insomnia at our local Picture House cinema a couple of years back and liked the place. Partly because it reminded us of The Dukes and Filmsoc where we used to work/volunteer.

So today we went to see Who Killed The Electric Car?, bought a year’s membership, then went back after lunch to watch Clerks 2.

First of all, a year’s membership is well worth it. It cost us £40 for a joint membership (ie living in the same house) and, aside from other membership perks (like discounted tickets and exclusive screenings), you get 3 free films (ie 6 tickets – worth £39). We used our first pair of free tickets to watch Clerks 2 and there’s at least one other film showing at the moment that I want to see. The downside of going during the day is that we have to pay for parking but that’s free in the evening.

Who Killed The Electric Car? is a fascinating documentary about the development, death, and on-going lobbying for the electric car in the U.S.. According to the film, the majority of the earliest cars were electric; preferred for their lack of noise and fumes. The combustion engine, cheap fuel, etc won the battle though and became the dominent technology. Now, though, global warming and U.S. wars with the Middle East (which produces two-thirds of oil used in the West) are encouraging people to re-consider alternatives like electric. Modern hybrids like the Toyota Prius have become incredibly popular with celebrities (including Robert Llewellyn who drove his to IBM Hursley in the Spring).

Well, the film sold it to me; I want an electric car…something like the EV1 would be nice. I figure that it’d be perfect for the majority of our car journeys (we fill up our 1.6 Vectra less than once every 2 weeks) and, on the odd occasion when we need to drive further than the battery will allow, we can hire a petrol car (at least, until public rechargers are more pervasive).

There are obviously issues, in this country if not in the States, about the rising costs and availability of electricity and, also,whether it’s actually that environmentally-friendly to be making the emissions come from coal (currently the major fuel for electricity) instead of oil (though that would be less of a problem with hydroelectric or wind power). My other questions would be practical ones like: how much electricity does it take to fully recharge the battery? and how long does it take to fully recharge?

So, anyway, a film worth seeing.

Clerks 2 is also worth watching, though more if you are a Kevin Smith fan. It has the glossy brightness of Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back but nicely starts out in black and white, showing Dante going to work at the Quick Stop and discovering the place in coloured flames – a cool effect. It then switches to colour as he and Randall start working their McJobs in Mooby’s (as seen first in Dogma). I found it a bit slow in places but then the original Clerks isn’t exactly speedy – that’s not the point of it. I think it’s a good sequel but (by definition!) lacks the originality of…well…the original. 🙂

I think my favourite Smith film is probably Dogma, mainly because each time I watch it I get more of it. Clerks also stands up well to repeat viewings; I guess time will tell whether Clerks 2 will too, although I will watch it again when it’s out on DVD. Clerks has a special place in my heart because we visited the Quick Stop when we were in New Jersey 3 years ago.