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Film

Cult Column: Snowpiercer

Snowpiercer is not the first Bong Joon-ho film I watched; it’s not even the second. It’s a film I watched blind on Netflix in the middle of my Chris Evans phase, and it’s a classic I’ve been thinking about ever since.  The film is set in an Arctic world where the only survivors live on […]

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Culture Literature

Havergey review: John Burnside’s loveably weird utopia

Welcome to Havergey: a remote island on Scotland’s west coast where a ‘real community’ has been built, far from the smoking rubble of what The Machine People left behind. John Burnside’s quirky environmental manifesto is a curious mixture of Taoism, deep environmentalism, good humour and the occasional ironic sci-fi reference. Burnside makes no secret of […]

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TV

Altered Carbon

Altered Carbon is a neo-noir detective story with a futuristic sci-fi backdrop. Cross genre projects such as this can be tricky to pull off, but while Altered Carbon is not without its missteps, it is certainly a successful venture. The premise of the show, involving human consciousness that can be moved into a new body […]

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Film

Bursting Back onto the Big Screen: The return of sci-fi horror

“In space, no-one can hear you scream.” That terrifying line, from the original poster for Ridley Scott’s Alien thirty seven years ago, remains one of the greatest tag lines from any movie poster. It set the tone for one of the scariest and greatest ventures into science fiction, followed up by James Cameron’s equally impressive […]

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Film

Star Trek Beyond

Being a fan of both the original series and J.J. Abrams’ film series I was originally sceptical of Justin Lin’s Star Trek Beyond. While sci-fi is no stranger to big blockbuster action sequences and scenery to gawk at it is usually at the base of a deeper point or commentary about our society today. Star Trek […]

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Film

The apocalypse or: here’s one we made earlier

Illustration: Vivian Uhlir “The world is going to end. We will all be consumed by nuclear fire, wiped out by disease, or roam the planet as the undead while the consequences of our actions wreak havoc on a now unrecognisable world. There is no hope for the human race, and we will slowly start to […]

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Film

2001: A Personal Odyssey

It is staring at me. Constant. Relentless. Unblinking. The red light is burning into my retinas. I cannot escape even when I close my eyes. There is a shrill intermittent tone. I lie alone in the darkness, staring into this red eye, pleading. Stop it, I cry silently, please stop it. And in my head […]

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Film

The Martian

After the languorous Exodus; Gods and Kings, and the misguided Alien prequel, Prometheus, The Martian is a triumphant return to form for Ridley Scott. It is as surprising as it is welcome – Scott doesn’t make fun movies, certainly none set in space (observe the chest-bursting horror of Alien, the technological pessimism of Bladerunner). But, […]