10.30am and it is the first showing of the pilot episode of Bates Motel in front of any audience and Carlton Cuse, showrunner of Lost is co-writing and producing this prequel to Psycho with Kerry Ehrin from Friday Night Lights. Interesting. This is a 10 episode show starting Monday 18th March on A&E and it stars Freddie Highmore as an adolescent Norman Bates and Vera Farmiga as his mother, Norma. These actors are the reason to watch this show. These central performances hold the centre for what Carlton Cuse described as a mixture of Lost, Friday Night Lights and Twin Peaks. I will continue to watch this show as it looks like it is going in a very interesting direction.
Rewind This is a documentary about VHS, the impact it has had on the democratisation of movie distribution and most importantly the group of collectors still ramaging around flea markets and vintage stores for the rare and not so rare (Titanic double tape box set). This is a sweet doco about another form of fandom, however there is an underlying note about the turnover of technology leading to the loss of movies. We have champions for film archiving but we don't have any well known film makers calling for the restoration of VHS films, some of which are not available on any other format. Like any culture we dispose of and forget about many works of 'art' and confine them to the memory of a purist or a line in the history ebooks. This documentary will at least make it a paragraph.
Belfast in the 1970s and punk music finds a fairy godfather in the form of Terry Hooley, the owner of Good Vibrations record store on Victoria Street, Belfast, Northern Ireland. In the middle of the protestant/catholic 'troubles'. This is the setting for Good Vibrations, the story inspired by the life of Terry Hooley. It is a great, fee-lgood movie with a kick-ass soundtrack that we can only hope comes out soon. The film is anchored by a wonderful performance by Richard Dormer, who is soon to become known outside of Ireland by his upcoming role in Game of Thrones. Go and see this movie and live that time feeling of discovering and loving music.
The last movie of the day is a complete left turn. The Spectacular Now, based on the book by the same name is a 'love story' about the alcoholic fun-loving high school senior Sutter (Miles Teller) and the shy reserved book loving Aimee (Shailene Woodley). This is not your typical high school romance, and the realistic take on alcohol, lack of awareness and confidence and the stuff families go through is balanced by a strong script and cast. Director James Ponsoldt does a good job. The only quibble I have is the ending. You will know what I mean when you see it.