Patrick Malahide as Headmaster in Like Minds

Headmaster leading assembly.

Headmaster leading assembly.

In 2006 Patrick Malahide played the part of Dr. Forbes in Like Minds.  My DVD is called Murderous Intent, but I don’t like that title quite as much so I’ll stick with Like Minds.

Dr. Forbes is headmaster of a boarding school.  His son Alex (Eddie Redmayne), one of the “like minds” referenced in the title, is a very troubled young man who has been implicated in three deaths including the possible murder (Or was it a suicide made to look like murder?) of his “best friend’ Nigel Colbie (Tom Sturridge).

This is a very good film full of twists and turns.  Themes such as Gestalt theory, the merging of minds, eternity and the history/mythology of the Knights Templar (including the very creepy story of Maraclea) play a big part, all as seen through the eyes of extremely disturbed teenage boys.  I’ll try not to give too many spoilers, but there will be some.

Director’s First Choice

Naturally, Patrick Malahide is especially excellent.  He was director Gregory Read‘s first choice for the headmaster role.  From the DVD commentary provided by Mr. Read and composer Carlo Giacco:

Read: He sat across from me and it was like he was headmaster.  It was frightening.

Alex: "I don't have time for this bullshit."

One scary headmaster!

Giacco: He’s the perfect headmaster; he’s fantastic.

Read: He’s a lovely bloke.

Giacco: I feel frightened of him. (laughs)

Read: Well, I wanted that stern and that rigid kind of look but also someone who could fracture.  I think he does that so well in this film. Again, it’s a subtlety of performance.

Awww, I’m sure he’s more lovely than frightening. :-)  Anyway, Dr. Forbes is very much as they described.  With a gruff Scottish accent, beautiful flowing robe, and stern military-esque deportment he comes across as the exact sort of man you would want heading a boys’ boarding school.

Disruptive Son and Freaky New Boy

Sends them to his office after assembly.

Sends them to his office after assembly.

But, during assembly we see that he doesn’t have control over his own son who is chatting with his friend Josh (Jon Overton).  He sends the boys to his office after assembly where Alex is confrontational and angry.  Alex has just learned that he is to have a room-mate, Nigel, something he’s never experienced before.  There is a lot of tension between father and son as they vie for control. Read on for gallery and bonus clip

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Patrick Malahide interview for Indian Summers – Channel 4

Channel 4 have a posted great interview with Patrick Malahide.  Click here to read it. Here are a few highlights (though the whole interview is a highlight)

What was it that attracted you to take part in Indian Summers?

Obviously, looking at this, it looked like a great project, but then you have to start thinking “Is it a good role?” And it was. It’s a really interesting, complex thing to take on. I just thought, when I read the script, “This is a really classy piece of work.” It was clear that the writer, Paul Rutman, clearly knew what he was talking about. He knew his history. He knew India. He was writing from a position of real knowledge, and it showed. It was a real quality piece of work. I was just very chuffed to be asked to do it, and I took it on with some enthusiasm, which is pretty unusual these days. I think it’s a really, really good bit of writing. And I’ve only seen a trailer for the first episode, but my goodness, it made me want to be a part of that world. It seemed so colourful and complex and fascinating.

So good to hear Mr. Malahide feels enthusiastic about this project.  If the first episode is anything to go by, and I’m sure it is, the enthusiasm is well founded.  It was a very strong opener and promises to be an excellent series.

It all sounds very traditionalist.

Well, yes, and at first sight you think “Oh well, he’s an old fashioned authoritarian whose against independence and against Gandhi,” and that’s one view of him. But then you dig a little deeper and you find out that this man, when he was Viceroy, went to the Royal Bombay Yacht Club with a group of Indian friends – that in itself made me sit up and take note – and was refused entry, because he was accompanied by Indian friends. What did he do? He founded his own sports and social club, which was open to all races, and still exists to this day. It’s called the Willingdon Sports and Social Club. Now that’s a hook upon which I’ve hung his character, because whatever else he was, he must have had a streak of decency about him. And the more I read, the more I realised that actually he’s a man who wanted to do the best in difficult circumstances. Of course he felt the Indian’s weren’t ready for independence, so in that sense he patronised them. But he still loved them, and he still enjoyed their company and their culture. He was fascinated by it. So he was caught between the traditionalist view of empire and the modern world. He was a man towards the end of his life, trying desperately to keep up, and always being slightly behind the curve. I think he was a decent man trying to do an impossible job. So you can shift him away from stereotype and cardboard villain into something much more human.

And we all know that Patrick Malahide excels at playing nuanced characters who refuse to conform to preconceived stereotypes, so I’m sure the Viceroy will have some considerable depth.

It is a very interesting interview, so I’m very pleased that Channel 4 have posted it.

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Analysis of a Scene XVIII: Troy and Alleyn Have a Row in “Hand In Glove”

Foreseeing a row in his future?  Troy and Alleyn Have a Row in "Hand In Glove"

Foreseeing a row in his future?

Just in time (almost) for Valentine’s Day, here’s a scene from “Hand In Glove“, S02E02 of the “Inspector Alleyn Mysteries“, featuring our two favourite lovebirds, Chief Inspector Roderick Alleyn and World Famous Artist™ Agatha Troy (Belinda Lang).  Alleyn has just solved a murder (plus lots of attempts) committed by demented whackjob/cleaver-wielding spinster (these things go together distressingly often in Ngaio Marsh novels) and Pekinese dog fancier, Connie Cartell (Barbara Jefford).  Coincidentally enough, Connie’s ne’er-do-well “niece”, Moppet, has also been involved in trafficking  forged Troy paintings.  Despite Alleyn’s specific request that she not get involved in investigating the forgeries for her own safety, Troy goes ahead and does it anyway, narrowly escaping becoming one of Connie’s victims only due to Alleyn’s last-minute intervention.  The dust is barely settling from Connie’s arrest when the two of them have a little row… that turns out to be surprisingly romantic.

[Alleyn has just succeeded in persuading Connie to drop her cleaver and not murder everyone in the room.  He and Troy go off to a quiet corner for a bit of discussion.]
Alleyn:  Never in all my life have I met anybody so confoundedly stubborn as you!

“Never in all my life have I met anybody
so confoundedly stubborn as you!”

RF:  It’s pretty rare for Alleyn to lose his temper, so we already know that there’s something a little more to this than usual; this is not the buttoned-down Alleyn we’re used to.  He’s extremely restless and openly angry, pacing back and forth with nervous energy as he castigates Troy.  It also seems like he might be mentioning things about her that have bugged him for a while, that he’s never told her before.  There’s no equivalent scene in any of the Marsh books; her Troy and Alleyn simply never had discussions anything like this.

Admin:  Yes, in the book version of Hand in Glove Troy doesn’t really figure much at all.  So, this scene is added to show the intensity of Alleyn’s feelings for Troy.  And it is very effective!  He is simply exploding as a result of losing so much control and very nearly having the fright of his life.
Continue reading

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Indian Summers S01E01

Indian Summers episode 1 aired last night on Channel 4.  The bad news is that the Viceroy (Patrick Malahide, naturally) wasn’t in this episode.  The (very) good news is that it was an excellent opening episode.  It was visually stunning, full of compelling characters, multiple well-written storylines….it was just plain good.  Thumbs up :-D  After being disappointed by New Worlds (another Channel 4 production) I wasn’t sure what to expect with Indian Summers, but I now think I can expect the best.

Anyway, Lord Willingdon, the Viceroy, didn’t appear so I won’t do a recap, but we did learn that A. Willingdon has a sweet ride (Rolls Royce Phantom) and B. Thinks of his secretary, Ralph Whelan (Henry Lloyd-Hughes) as a son.   Oh, and Ralph is on a short list to be the new Viceroy so society doyenne Cynthia Coffin (Julie Walters) is working hard to improve Ralph’s chances.  Though, I see no good reason to replace the current Viceroy.  He looks so dashing in a pith helmet, after all.

Oh, and the set photographer, Digital Trekker has another great photo of Patrick Malahide in his Viceroy gear, this time in front of his Rolls Royce Phantom.  Click here to see it.

The Viceroy did appear in the “coming up next” scenes at the end of the episode, so he’ll be on eventually.  RFodchuk got some great grabs.  We are so intrigued by the scene where he and Ralph are dancing around junior clerk (probably soon to be promoted) Aafrin Dalal.

Gallery, courtesy of RFodchuk

 

 

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It’s a Meme! 31 – Valentine’s Day Edition

RF:  It’s that time of year again!  Happy Valentine’s Day from both of us at the Appreciation.  :-)

balon valentines meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

casaubon valentines meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ebenezer valentines meme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Admin: Happy Valentine’s :-)

Berkshire Valentine
Chopper Valentine
Chisholm_Valentine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And one random Valentine’s gif :-)

 

 

 

 

 

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Something Neat XXVI: Jack Turner Unfiltered in “Hunted” Publicity Stills

One of the biggest drawbacks to watching 2012’s “Hunted” was the degree to which the cinematographers liked to apply various filters to the end product, frequently rendering scenes murky and details hard to see.  So, it’s always particularly enjoyable when unfiltered publicity pictures of Mr. Malahide as Jack Turner turn up, allowing us to see what he looks like in his natural plumage.  Here are a few examples of Jack Turner unfiltered that we’ve discovered online.

From a Danish site – I’m guessing this is from episode two, “LB“, where Jack tells Dave Ryder just how important the Mysterious Briefcase™ is.  Lovely red on red combination:

Patrick Malahide as Jack Turner in "Hunted" - Jack Turner Unfiltered

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is actually one of Admin’s finds, from a German site – Jack looks a wee bit grumpy here, probably because he appears to be under surveillance:

Patrick Malahide as Jack Turner in "Hunted"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another of Admin’s finds, from Buzzfocus.com. This is from episode eight, “Snow Maiden“, after Jack’s been caught in an explosive blast meant to kill him (but they missed).  Who says you can’t mix polka-dots and stripes?  Also, note the battle damage:

Patrick Malahide as Jack Turner in "Hunted"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And one from a Polish fan site, which I believe is from the first episode, “Mort“, featuring a fetching magenta tie/pink shirt/pinstriped vest combination:

Patrick Malahide as Jack Turner in "Hunted"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For contrast, here’s a grab from the same scene as it was broadcast, except now it’s been filtered:

Patrick Malahide as Jack Turner in "Hunted"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

See?  Very washed out and anemic; the colours are hardly visible.  I realize this was the cinematographer’s (and possibly the director’s) stylistic choice, but I really do have to wonder why they went that way.  Sometimes entire episodes (*cough*”LB”*cough*) were so murky you could hardly see anything.  But there’s no reason to hide Jack’s colours, especially when he seems to have put so much thought into his wardrobe.  ;-)

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From Digital Trekker – Indian Summers Premier

Indian Summers to Premier Feb 15th in UK..

Click the above link to get some fantastic Indian Summers information.  Photographer Matt Brandon has taken some amazing photos of the cast.  Click here for my very favorite ;-)  That pith helmet — I love it!  Now I really can’t wait to see this series!  Patrick Malahide looks fantastic.

From the article linked above:

Speaking of actors, everyone of these actors on the set of Indian Summers was a pleasure to photograph.  Even the seasoned actors like Patrick Malahide would often take time out of resting between takes and allow me to photograph him over and over again. Personally I would have told myself to shove off!

Well, I’m sure the cast were very pleased posing for the photographs because Mr. Brandon is clearly extremely talented and professional.  Of course, he certainly had great material to work with — especially with that Viceroy.

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Analysis of a Scene XVII: Jack and Stevie Meet at a Police Station in “Hunted”

Well, look who's here.

Well, look who’s here.

Such an innocuous-sounding title for such a great scene!  First, a little background, or you can read the full recap if you prefer.   In “Hunted“, Stephen Turner (Stephen Campbell Moore), son of mobster Jack Turner, has been remarkably blind to his father’s more nefarious activities for quite some time.  However, in episode seven, “Khyber”, Stevie begins to realize Jack might be involved in more serious crimes than he’s ever suspected, including the murder of Stevie’s best friend, Lewis Conroy (Richard Dormer).  His suspicions are initially sparked by the not-so-subtle hints dropped by Sam Hunter (Melissa George), alias Alex Kent, nanny to Stevie’s son Eddie and Sooper-Seekrit Undercover Agent™ for the Byzantium organization – which, coincidentally enough, happens to be out to get Jack.  So, Stevie has been gathering evidence against Jack and decides go to the police with what he’s found.

[At the police station]
Stevie:  Been waiting for an hour.
Desk Sergeant:  Yes, Mr. Turner, I just got the call.  I’ll take you back now.

RF:  Tsk tsk, Stevie, not very polite!  Are you perhaps more like your old man than you care to admit?  ;-)

Admin:  That was pretty rude.  Police stations are busy places, Stevie.

RF:  D.S. Chisholm would make him wait an extra fifteen minutes, just on principle.  ;-)

Admin:  He certainly would make him wait just to tell him what for, although Chisholm would never be in the pocket of the likes of Jack Turner!

[Stevie’s shown past several rooms absolutely crawling with cops.  He goes into an office which has one man in it – revealed in close-up to be Jack Turner, his own father.  Jack turns around and Stevie looks stunned.  Meanwhile, the desk sergeant stands guard outside so they won’t be disturbed.]

Hey, that's not Commander Brooks!  Jack and Stevie meet at a police station in "Hunted"

Hey, that’s not Commander Brooks…!

RF:  Three things I really liked about this:  first, Jack’s power and reach is such that (1) the police notify him when his son unexpectedly drops in for a visit; (2) only Jack would be able to have a sensitive meeting like this in the middle of a police station absolutely stuffed to the brim with cops; and (3) the nonchalance of the desk sergeant as he guards the door.  It’s obvious who he takes orders from, and he knows Jack is not to be disturbed.  I also liked the confirmation that Jack has bought off more than just one incompetent police stooge/fixer/cleaner-upper: namely, Everett.  But the best part is Stevie’s absolutely stunned expression when Jack turns around – the first of many great pay-offs in the scene.  By contrast, Jack seems completely unsurprised and remarkably calm about the whole thing.

Admin:  And it is a fantastic shot.  The way the camera focuses on Jack’s half face is electrifying.  You can tell he totally owns the place from the expression alone.  Stevie looks a bit like he’d just rather run away.

RF:  Too late for that now, Stevie!
Continue reading

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Patrick Malahide is Playing Lord Willingdon

Channel 4 have released more promotional information on Indian Summers.   From their article, Introducing the World of Indian Summers

Lord Willingdon [the only real-life character in Indian Summers, played by Patrick Malahide] harks back to an earlier era of empire: his response to the rise of Indian nationalism is brutal and repressive, leaving that movement in a state of anger and frustration.

Here is Lord Willingdon’s wikipedia entry.  Here is another interesting link, it is a British Pathe video: “Lord Willingdon, the Viceroy reviews British and Native Troops and sees “Jaipur” captained by its young Maharajah – defeat Kashmir.”

willingdon

The two Viceroys.

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It’s a Meme! 30 – Chisholm’s Travel Guide Edition

The continuing story, inspired by our recent re-viewing of “Minder on the Orient Express“.  ;-)  Previous Chisholm’s Travel Guides can be found here and here.

Chisholm's Guide to International Travel Step 4:  Make New Friends!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chisholm's Guide to International Travel Step 5:  Be Aware of Incidental Costs and Keep Track of Your Euros!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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