Articles

A collection of articles written by Samuel Marlow on his observations and experiences of the motion picture landscape, covering a range of topics. Put another way, "The unsubstantiated and unresearched opinions and exploits of a writer-producer-director and media odd-job man living and working in England".

We have added a Comment section at the bottom of each article, so you can give Sam a piece of your mind, or tell him how right he is. It's up to you, you lucky, lucky people!


The Danger of Inactive Heroes: How a Lack of Character Motivation Killed X+Y

by Samuel Marlow. Published 13th May 2015

I've just returned from seeing Morgan Matthews' X+Y and, while it contains several strong performances from actors of whom I am very fond, I was kept at an emotional arm's distance from what should have been an engaging story, by an unfocussed narrative.

X+Y Asa Butterfield

Nathan (Asa Butterfield) in X+Y.

The BBC Film is about an autistic spectrum teenage maths prodigy, who is whisked off to Taiwan to train for an international maths tournament (which actually takes place in England). As with many stories and characters of this type, the main character is socially awkward, misunderstood, prone to misunderstanding, and takes comfort in complex mathematics and patterns.

Apart from the problem that, with The Imitation Game and The Theory of Everything being released to close to X+Y, this narrative ground feels well-trodded, the movie also suffers from the biggest risk for a movie of this type - a character who says and does little.

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The Power of the Untold Story

Levi Miller as Peter Pan

by Samuel Marlow. Published 22nd March 2015

After seeing the trailer for Joe Wright's Pan, Sam asks if there are some characters whose appeal stems from their mystique, and whether telling their origin stories can harm this.

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Don't Blame The Cat

Save The Cat

by Samuel Marlow. Published 27th July 2014

Blake Snyder's Save The Cat has been blamed for "making all movies feel the same". Sam argues in the Cat's defence that it is a worthwhile book.

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In My Day... Kids' TV Past and Present

The Broom Cupboard

by Samuel Marlow. Published 29th June 2014

After seeing some recent children's television, Samuel Marlow decides to explore if the often-stated belief that TV was better when we were young is true.

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Richard Dawkins' Unscientific Jihad Against Culture

Richar Dawkins

by Samuel Marlow. Published 5th June 2014

A Rebuttal To His Attack On Fairy Tales: Samuel Marlow takes a couple of hours out of post-production to explain why Dawkins' unscientific and unresearched opinions about Fairy Tales are not only wrong, but dangerous.

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Can A Work Of Art Ever Be Detached From Its Creator?

Orson Scott Card

by Samuel Marlow. Published 6th November 2013

In light of the controversy surrounding Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game, Samuel Marlow considers if a work of art can ever be separate from the views of its creator.

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Forward to the Past - the Hazards of Nostalgia

Back To The Future

by Samuel Marlow. Published 23rd October 2013

Forward to the Past! Samuel Marlow takes a look at the current trend for looking backwards for music, lifestyle, film and television, and wonders if it is for the best.

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The Psychology of Super-Heroes

Superkid

by Samuel Marlow. Published 18th June 2013

Samuel Marlow argues that, as super-hero films aim for a more mature audience, we are in danger of robbing a generation of young children of important role models.

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The Micro-Budget Myth

El Mariachi

by Samuel Marlow. Published 24th May 2013

Samuel Marlow takes a look at how the tiny budgets of movies like Colin and El Mariachi have come to form part of a Micro-Budget myth, even when the film screened in theatres can cost thirty times that.

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Heroes Shouldn't Be Allowed To Get Old

Harrison Ford in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Published 12th May 2013
With recent rumblings are that Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford have been implicated in the new Star Wars sequels, Sam discussed why some heroes are best left young in our minds.

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