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Summer of Rockets (2019)
Utterly absorbing from start to finish.
I am surprised that this enchanting and luxuriating series has been given several bad reviews: weak plot; convoluted; tiresome and distracting sub-plots, uninteresting; cheesy ending etc. etc.
I feel that they have completely missed the many valid themes and issues it raises (most of which are equally relevant today). I am however edified that a significant number praised the almost faultless representation of selected sights and scenes of the period in which it is set.
The acting is superb and fundamental human needs, fears, desires, and desperation of loss are sympathetically and sensitively explored. Filmography and non-diegetic sound all add to the very pleasurable experience. I found the leimotifs of 'secrets'and 'surprises' (a Poliakoff trade mark) - however seemingly trivial to some perhaps - a delight. Similarly, the writer's hallmark of using photographic and visual imagery to help define identity, sense of place and the relentless passage of time very poignant. I was immediately hooked and remained so throughout. A truly beautiful production and ultimately optimistic and uplifting. It was worth every penny of my licence fee!
Those who gave the series bad reviews appear to have watched all six hours. I wonder why when they must have found it such a tedious chore?!
The Man in the High Castle (2015)
Episode 1 - my initial reactions
I haven't read the book , but as a first episode this was pretty dire, in just about every respect, particularly in the shoddy representation of a Nazi state in the US; this was totally unrealistic. By 1962 I doubt you'd have seen a single black face there - unless in a death camp. A token (and cheap, I thought) reference to the "snowflakes" of death in "Schindler's List" came across again as an incongruous 'add on' - as did Nazi insignia - merely an appendage to what was essentially still the US of then (and probably now!). I will watch the next episode but if I find it as disappointing as the first,I will probably try the book instead. A brilliant idea but (as in "Fatherland") wholly under exploited. What a terrible waste of a golden opportunity! Very unconvincing.