williamjm

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  1. England win the toss and will bat first (not a difficult decision at the Gabba). This could be crucial for the series, if they can bat long and put in a good first innings performance then it's a sign things may be competitive. If they subside cheaply then this could be a very long tour.
  2. I think it is the general consensus that Children of the Sky is the weakest of the three. The Tines are still one of my favourite alien races, but I agree the plot is just OK. Vinge did have an odd career, three classic SF novels (I liked his far future murder mystery Marooned in Realtime a lot as well) but the rest of his writing isn't as memorable.
  3. I saw the film today. I didn't have particularly high expectations, which was probably for the best as I thought the film was basically fine without being particularly good at anything, and I suspect it's unlikely to be all that memorable. It did manage to avoid some of Batman vs Superman's bigger flaws, at least the narrative was coherent and while Steppenwolf was a dull uninteresting CGI villain at least he wasn't actively annoying like Eisenberg's Lex Luthor. Someone up above said that DC would be pleased by a comparison with the Marvel films, but I'd say this was almost too reminiscent of some of the weaker parts of the Marvel films. The fight against CGI villain and his horde of expendable CGI minions is something we've seen in far too many superhero films now. Some of the dialogue also felt like it was trying very hard to recapture some of the humour of the Avengers films, it had its moments but often felt a bit flat. I thought Affleck's Batman was one of the best bits of BvS, and I think he's still good here, as is Wonder Woman although she did make me think that I'd probably rather be watching Wonder Woman 2. I liked Ezra Miller as The Flash and Jason Momoa as Aquaman, although I think a Flash movie would be have more potential than an Aquaman film. Cyborg wasn't particularly interesting as a character, but he did serve a plot purpose.
  4. I remember reading that there's now a plan to do The Silver Chair. That does sound familiar. I think there were also some problems with church groups advocating boycotts in the US because it was anti-religious, although I don't know if there's any evidence about how effective that was.
  5. It's not something I've rewatched as an adult, but when I was a child I loved the animated Flight of the Dragons film. They were planning to do a film trilogy but the mediocre box office prevented any sequels. The film does have some good points, I think they did an excellent job of portraying the daemons (and the bears), and it had a good cast. However, overall it was a bit disappointing, it felt as if they were trying to cram in too many plot points into the running time and it lost its way in the second half. They also cut the last scene from the story which means it ends on a completely different note to the book. I think the BBC are still planning a TV adaptation which should hopefully do the full story and do it better. I don't remember it all that well now, but I remember enjoying it.
  6. Whatever flaws the movie trilogy may have (and it had plenty), Martin Freeman as Bilbo was a perfect piece of casting.
  7. They could still have recast him even after the first film came out - I think many people would have been quite to pretend that whatever actor they cast had played the role all along, it would hardly be unprecedented in Hollywood history.
  8. I do really like Brotherhood of the Wolf, although it's probably more historical fiction with a bit of weirdness than a fantasy film.
  9. I thought it was a very encouraging performance, and not far off potentially winning at the end - although even if Hogg or the supporting player he tried to offload to had score there would still be a tough conversion kick to win. Some of the commentators were saying that they thought Scotland should have won but I think it's always going to be difficult to win with such a disparity in the scrum, especially when they'd lost the players who started. Looking forward to the Australia match next weekend, although it looks like the injury list will be even longer by then.
  10. The irony is that many of these companies say they want their own Game of Thrones, but they're not willing to take the same risk that HBO did in adapting a book series that may have been a bestseller but was still little known outside of epic fantasy fans.
  11. The Expanse might be the obvious suggestion, being largely set in the solar system.
  12. Out of all the Neal Stephenson books that could have been revisited I can't imagine many people wanting a follow-up to Reamde.
  13. That sounds like the sort of selection decision familiar to anyone who followed English cricket during the 90s.
  14. The current Rotten Tomatoes score for Justice League is an improvement on Batman vs Superman and Suicide Squad, but not a particularly big improvement standing at 37%.
  15. Cricinfo think Shaun Marsh is in as well, I get the impression he's a bit like Australia's answer to Graeme Hick in terms of how many times he gets dropped and then picked again. There was also a nice statistic that Darren Lehman has scored a first class century more recently than Tim Paine has. It is a reminder that England aren't the only team with a potentially shaky batting line-up.