Don't Gamify Your Hobbies: The Year I Watched 100 Films

In 2018 I set myself the challenge of watching 100 films, without counting rewatches, in a bid to diversify my viewing and watch more movies. To my mind, my media consumption had become stagnant, bogged down by list upon list of friendly recommendations and long-shelved ‘must-watch’ movies from college and university film studies. So, in much the same way people streamline their workload or self-optimise to see better results, I gamified one of my favourite hobbies. After two years of perceived

Cardboard Citizens: Interview with the Director of Sleeping Rough

Owain Astles is the writer and director of ‘Sleeping Rough’, a community-based docudrama about street homelessness, created after having personal experiences of being homeless. He is also the founder of . We talked to him about the film's production, the many forms of homelessness, and what can be done to help as cases of homelessness continue to rise. The film documents individual accounts of people living on the streets without access to shelter. How did you come across these stories, and how

Taking Back Control: Black Mirror, and the Rejection of Technology

In 1995, astronomer and author Clifford Stoll foreshadowed our scepticism regarding the role of technology and the internet in our lives. His book ‘Silicon Snake Oil’ - and its accompanying article in - contains many predictions that turned out to be laughably untrue; however the conclusion to his infamous howler hits the nail on the head in more ways than one: ‘What's missing from this electronic wonderland? Human contact. Discount the fawning techno-burble about virtual communities. Computers

Girlhood and sexual repression in The Virgin Suicides and The Beguiled

Catholic school conservatism and savage grace combine in Sofia Coppola’s sixth feature. Set in Virginia during the American Civil War, The Beguiled sees injured union soldier John McBurney (Colin Farrell) lured into the gated confines of an isolated all-girls school. Run by Nicole Kidman’s stony headmistress Miss Martha, the film also features Kirsten Dunst as teacher Edwina and Elle Fanning in the role of Alicia, the eldest of the students. Once behind the school’s imposing gate, John’s presen

The Chinese Challenge: Localising in China

With the second largest economy worldwide, China is most certainly a force to be reckoned with. Expected to overtake the US in years to come, it’s no wonder more and more companies want to expand to tap into this prospering market. However, to grow your business in China, you need to understand the importance of localisation. To do this, you need at least a basic grasp of what the cultural and linguistic differences of such a vast country entail.

White Day and Localised Ecommerce in Japan

We’ve all had time to get over Valentine’s day, but are you ready for White Day? Valentine’s Day as we know it looks a little different in Japan.With a focus on men, the burden of gift-giving falls exclusively on women. Common gifts include chocolate and edible treats — these are commonly offered to romantic partners or potential love interests; however, it is common to offer gifts to co-workers and classmates, even family.

How Marya Hornbacher's 'Wasted' Helped Me Come To Terms With My Eating Disorder

I completed treatment for my eating disorder in the summer of 2015. I’ve come a long way since then, with life bringing with it a whole host of new challenges and opportunities as life is so wanton to do. Time perpetually trickles through my grasping hands. I’ve been confronted a number of times post-recovery with my old habits, seeing them mirrored back at me through other people. It’s a strange thing to see reflections of what I now know to have been an extremely toxic, muddled time in my life

Trainspotting: Anticipating T2

Feet pound against the concrete. The drums of Iggy Pop’s ‘Lust for Life’ pound with fast-paced fervour. ‘Choose life.’ A near miss with a car on a side street. Ewan McGregor’s Mark Renton gasps a maniacal laugh, purple rings highlight his frenzied eyes. Heroin chic. But Rent-boy’s lust for life is nowhere to be seen, replaced instead by the pursuit of pure self-indulgence and pleasure. ‘Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family.’ The spiel goes on, choked with nihilism and punk rock attitude...
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