May 14th, 2012

Raks New Profile Pic Square

Dark Shadows vs Edward Scissorhands

Dark Shadows and Edward Scissorhands are both Tim Burton and Johnny Depp films.

I saw Dark Shadows at the cinema today:

Photo credit:

Cut and pasted from an email from the BFI Website:

Dark Shadows - The IMAX Experience (12A)

Barnabas is rich, powerful and an inveterate playboy... until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Bouchard.

In 1752 the Collins family sails from Liverpool to start a new life in America. The master of Collinwood Manor, Barnabas (Johnny Depp) is rich, powerful and an inveterate playboy... until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green). Angelique turns him into a vampire and buries him alive. Two centuries later, Barnabas is freed and emerges into the very changed world of 1972. He returns to Collinwood Manor to find that his once-grand estate has fallen into ruin. The dysfunctional remnants of the Collins family have fared little better, each harbouring their own dark secrets. Tim Burton directed this gothic vampire tale based on the cult TV series of the same name.

Follow the link for more details and to book tickets:

Having seen it, my honest advice is to give it a miss and see Edward Scissorhands instead. Edward is a far superior Tim Burton and Johnny Depp film.

Photo credit:

Cut and pasted from Wikipedia:

Edward Scissorhands is a 1990 American romantic fantasy film directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp. The film shows the story of an artificial man named Edward, an unfinished creation, who has scissors for hands. Edward is taken in by a suburban family and falls in love with their teenage daughter Kim. Both Burton and Elfman consider Edward Scissorhands their most personal and favourite work.

Raks's Reaction to Edward Scissorhands

Edward Scissorhands is one of my top three favourite films of all time. Johnny Depp's performance in the film has to be seen to be believed, and Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest, and Vincent Price all give stand-out performances in the film. The music by Danny Elfman is very powerful.

It came out in 1990, when I was at University, and it moved me profoundly. It was all about someone who was different, entering society for the first time. How at first he is welcomed, but then things start to go wrong, friends fall away, and he is left alone and isolated, feeling alone and unloved. It just broke my heart.

As a slightly weird and geeky young person, who had "unusual" interests for a student (ie not drinking, not ever in a relationship), and who ended up going to the cinema and the theatre on her own all the time, I felt a real empathy and a connection with Edward. I still do. I know the film and the character are also both deeply personal to Tim Burton and Johnny Depp; that comes out in the film very strongly.

You can buy Edward Scissorhands from Amazon here for just £4 or, of course, you can rent it:

Photo credit:

Raks New Profile Pic Square

Walk for Life 2012 on behalf of the Terrence Higgins Trust, Sunday 20 May 2012

My Walk for Life is taking place this coming Sunday so please could you sponsor me this week. THANK YOU.

Walk for Life: Supporting people living with HIV in poverty

Join us for a royal good time on 20 May 2012 and help raise a King's ransom ...

Cut and pasted from a letter from the Terrence Higgins Trust:

Walk for Life, Terrence Higgins Trust's annual 10k sponsored walk through central London, is back for its 23rd outing on Sunday 20 May 2012 and this year there's a very regal feel in the air with a right royal Kings and Queens theme. The Kings and Queens theme means that I will probably do the easy thing and go dressed as an Indian Maharaja or Maharani. I have not yet decided what I will be wearing but it will be very regal!

Walk for Life is always a lot of fun, a community celebration of life and love, courage and determination and a great excuse to get all dressed up, but most importantly it raises money for a vital service which offers a lifeline to people living with HIV in poverty. As of January 2012, Terrence Higgins Trust re-launched the Hardship Fund with national reach across the whole of the UK.

All funds raised from Walk for Life go towards providing vital grants for people living with HIV in severe financial need through our Hardship Fund. The Fund will offer invaluable support to some of the most vulnerable people with HIV, allowing them to afford basic necessities like warm clothing, healthy food and the fare to get to the hospital - helping them to keep their dignity and stay healthy despite severe financial difficulties.

Raks's says

This is the only fundraiser I am doing this year, and it is for a cause that is special to me and is very close to my heart. This will be the fourth time I am doing the Walk for Life (I did it in 2008, 2009 and 2011). I know money is very tight for everyone at the moment, but I am hoping that people can still find it within themselves to give a small contribution (or a large contribution!) to those who need the money more. Please please please, if you can afford to do so, sponsor me here:

And finally, last but not least, this is an open invitation for all my friends, colleagues, stakeholders and customers to join me on the walk if they wish to do so - the more the merrier!

You can register for the walk here:
Or call the Royal Hotline on 020 7812 1665
Or email