Art asks why

I had a Nicktor Night last night. We watched an awful film called Kill List which while getting almost universal critical acclaim was the biggest load of tosh we’ve seen in a long time. Badly edited, scripted and acted, it stands as a testament to the waste of arts funding to be had in this country.

Kill List is one of those films that looks like an individual’s idea that clearly the general public wouldn’t want to see but that the individual feels they should. It happens with art a lot and makes me wonder why we have to have art (of any kind) that is, apparently, good for us that we wouldn’t pay to have made anyway, instead, paid for from taxes.

But, back to Kill List. I have read reviews that say it is brilliant for valid reasons if they were applied to an entirely different film and I have read lots of scathing reviews that say it’s confused and messy. My review would say it is 90 minutes I’ll never get back.

I’m not going to discuss the film for any length of time because I think it gives it far more credibility than it deserves but I would like to make one important point: A lot of the dialogue is mumbled and incomprehensible, making it next to impossible to work out who, what or why the characters do what they do. Surely, on some fundamental level, art is about communication – an artist communicates a personal vision, a film maker communicates a story – and when that falls down, unless the piece is about a lack of communication (which is valid), the piece is surely pointless.

Mind you, the fact that we watched this load of garbage meant that we enjoyed our dose of sitcoms a lot more. Sorry was an episode which featured a circus, listing among it’s attractions a Pyramid of Goats which, sadly, was not seen but thoroughly enjoyed and Season Two of Goodnight Sweetheart seems to have employed a much better writing team as the script is funnier and tighter than Season One.

Basically, it was another excellent Nicktor Night spent drinking and regretting the fact that Nicktor spent £6 on Kill List.

But that was last night…today, being Wednesday, I went into London to have lunch with Mirinda. On the way to crossing the river, I spotted a number of huge art installations at the Southbank Centre. A giant couple of wicker figures trying to scale the National Theatre, some rather odd looking giant children’s building blocks hanging above the walkway, and other interesting pieces.

Everything is beautiful if you don't look down

They are all part of the summer long Festival of the World. It all looks pretty amazing. I love huge artworks – the effect of taking every day objects and blowing them up. You can take the time to admire them from a different perspective.


The building blocks are great fun. Seen from different angles and levels, they spell out simple messages. At a slightly different angle to the one above, the blocks read ‘smile’. From the other side, just as you get to the end of Hungerford Bridge, the message is ‘Ask why’. They are very clever because from most angles they are just a jumble of letters.

Which all rather brings me back to the question of art and public funding of it. These pieces communicate and give the viewer a sense of wonder. Sometimes they inspire joy, other times awe but always they are communicating something. I shall investigate more of these amazing pieces next week.

Lunch was taken aboard Tattershalls and was lovely. On our walk I thought this rather famous clock face was looking all photogenic.

Big Ben's clock face

I also thought Mum & Dad might enjoy it.

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One Response to Art asks why

  1. mum cook says:

    Thank you we loved it such a long time since we have seen it this close. loved the guy climbing also the one helping him at the top very clever.
    love mum

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