Jupiter Ascending review: Out-of-this-world bad


(Picture: Warner Bros)

Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) leads a humdrum life cleaning toilets, until one day she is targeted by the ruthless son of a powerful family that live on a planet awaiting a new heir. Along with a genetically engineered soldier called Caine (Channing Tatum), she sets out to stop his evil reign.

There’s a scene in which Jupiter is knocked out while wearing a hospital gown. When she comes to, Caine, a genetically engineered soldier she hardly knows (at this point) is in the room. When Jupiter notes she is back in her normal clothes, Caine admits that he changed them – while she was unconscious –  and Jupiter is only mildly annoyed. This isn’t the only instance where this happens.

Will the Wachowskis ever make anything as good as The Matrix? I know it’s unfair to keep comparing, but it becomes more and more apparent with each middling-to-meh movie they make (Cloud Atlas, middling; Speed Racer, meh).

The Matrix had both mind-melting visuals AND a decent plot about survival and the strength of the human spirit – I think. Ascending is totally lacking in story. It’s like they took the basic idea of  “Channing Tatum as a space dog on rollerskates” and tried to mould a plot around it, which would explain why the story jumps all over the place, with some parts of it abandoned altogether. Dialogue feels like filler between action sequences, and even they’re dodgy – the two leads look like blurry splotches against the sky during an spaceship-chase near the beginning.

There is zero chemistry between Channing and Mila, both solid actors trying to make the best of a bad script. Eddie Redmayne, that’s OSCAR NOMINATED Eddie Redmayne, is great in The Theory Of Everything but laughably hammy in this, like a Lidl-version of Voldemort. Douglas Booth and Tuppence Middleton are ineffectual and forgettable – in fact they’re literally forgotten by the film’s last third. They just disappear and their stories are never resolved. Sean Bean is clearly there for the pay check, talking about bees and how they’re ‘designed to recognise royalty’ (WHAT), but at least you can have fun guessing whether he’s going to bite the dust this time or not.

I could say go and see Jupiter Ascending if you’re after some easygoing Friday night fun at the cinema, but Shaun The Sheep The Movie is out, so see that instead.


“We have to sell an illusion… Reality is boring.” BAFTA Film Craft Costume Design Talk

I was scrolling through Twitter earlier this week, the prime example of procrastination, and stumbled upon a BAFTA announcement of a costume design talk. Luckily I was in time to grab a pair of tickets so yesterday Hannah and I made our way to BAFTA 195 Piccadilly to hear a conversation between Sammy Sheldon Differ, Jany Temime and Steven Noble.

Sammy Sheldon Differ with one of Keira Knightley’s costumes from ‘The Imitation Game’.

Sheldon DIffer and Noble are both nominated for BAFTAs tonight for The Imitation Game and The Theory of Everything respectively. Temime is currently working on Spectre but remained tight-lipped.

Jany Temime.

Jany Temime.

The conversation was intended to be inclusive rather than specific about certain designer’s films but inevitably these conversations came up too. The whole event was fascinating because we were able to see designer’s interact with each other and it is not that common to see this. The Hollywood Reporter hosted a round table with the costume design nominees back in 2012 but there hasn’t been one since.

Steven Noble (this is pretty much how he was dressed yesterday - I love it).

Steven Noble (this is pretty much how he was dressed yesterday – I love it).

The first topic of conversation was about the process of designing costumes for a feature film. Sheldon Differ started by talking about reading the script and then starting the research. She collected research about the period (if its a period piece) and also some more abstract research about the emotion of the story. Then comes the creation of boards (to display and organise this visual research), leading onto sketches and then making; where possible. The job is “personifying through research”. But the process can change from job to job because every film has different needs.

Noble agreed with Sheldon Differ’s process and treats the first read of the script as an audience member – the first perception of the characters and the story. It’s a “very organic process”.

Temime had a slightly different process as she said that after she’s read the script she wants to talk to the director right away to find out what his or her vision is. It isn’t Tempe’s film so she wants to make sure that they’re on the same page.

Noble: “Do you ever go back to those first impressions?”

Temime: “Sometimes.”

Then came the discussion of what the deciding factor for working on a film is. Temime said straight away that for her it is the director. If she loves the director then she’ll do the film regardless of the genre. You want to work with people you love. (And the director is normally the one to choose the costume designer.) Noble agreed but said that for him it was 50:50 between the script and the director. Temime agreed that the story is vitally important but the script itself will evolve throughout the process. She said that the script for Spectre is probably on its 13th draft so if she just went for the script which version would she choose? Noble has just finished working on A Monster Calls (directed by J.A. Bayona) and said that in the end they had no script and no shooting schedule! Never an ideal situation when shooting a film.


The focus then came to Tempe’s work on Bond – more about Skyfall than Spectre (both directed by Sam Mendes). Temime was definitely aware of the “history behind you” and being “responsible for an image”. She made the analogy that a Bond film is like a Christmas tree. Every year you want the same general idea but something different. She feels the need to give the audience what they expect but also to surprise them.

This then lead to a discussion about the constraints of working with a brand or with product placement. Temime is currently obsessed with the watches in Bond – because she has to be due to their contract. She feels that it is more difficult to work with a brand than not – they have a distinct expectation of you. Noble added that people working in fashion work in a much different time frame than costume and film. The fashion brands want to see the script, see where their product will be worn and tend to veto the use if it will be damaged or is worn in a death scene or something they don’t want associated with the brand. Sheldon Differ interposed that she has had occasions of fashion houses getting back to her once filming has finished. Noble concurred this situation. Temime ended saying that she has found fashion people very difficult to work with (no-one’s forgotten Black Swan yet, right?) because “fashion people are completely different from us”. Costume designers are expressing so much more through clothes.

The Imitation Game Movie New Pic (2)

The Imitation Game (directed by Morten Tyldum) was the next discussion launched. Sheldon Differ said that the difficulty she had was making the design faithful and interesting. Nothing that takes the audience out of the story. She looked for reference of colour and happily found some so that the film never looked muted. She tried to be as truthful as possible but there is always this contrast for the audience between realism and view of the period. This is why period films designed in different eras tend to be “visible” (the 1970s version of The Great Gatsby versus the 2014 version for example). Sheldon Differ only met Turing’s nephew after he’d seen the film and he said the costumes were very representative of what he knew of Alan – best compliment she could receive.


Noble had a similar issue when designing The Theory of Everything. Director James Marsh told Noble that he didn’t want to create a social realist film and he didn’t want to document each decade. He was much more interested in showing an emotional timeline. Noble had to argue for some kind of guide to ensure that he was working from the same period as the make-up, hair and production designers. That symbiotic relationship is key to creating a seamless film. The design is able to travel through fairly smoothly. Key pieces were placed on background artists and a mixture was created. In the same way that you don’t suddenly have a new wardrobe every year, neither do film characters. The costumes needed to be true to the period but fresh for the audience.


Gravity posed a particular difficulty for Temime. One directive she was given by Alfonso Cuaron was “do not have two teletubbies”. The costumes for Sandra Bullock and George Clooney needed to be completely different from true astronaut suits but still look realistic. It was a technically boring film for Temime because she needed to research precise reasons for the positioning of parts of the suit so that she’d be able to move them. Then there was the issue of white. She thinks they worked with around 50 different shades to allow for different shooting. Temime agreed to Gravity because she wanted to work with Cuaron again.


Sheldon DIffer talked about the difficulties of working on Ex Machina to create a very specific costume for Alicia Vikander’s Ava. There were experiments with UV powder to try to get the wire mesh to glow in different light but this never worked as intended. Eventually the fabric was made using a metal powder and they were able to generate this undulation to make it look as close to “skin” as possible. Another constraint was that the director, Alex Garland, didn’t want to see any seams. (He was one of the main reasons Sheldon Differ signed up.) The suit had to be weaved together and Vikander had to squeeze into it. (So much so that she fainted during one of the early fittings.) Sheldon Differ had to work very closely with the visual effects department so that she could give them the best result that they wanted.


Under the Skin posed different problems for Noble mostly because Scarlett Johansson only wears two costumes throughout the entire film. Jonathan Glazer had been working on the film for about 11 years before Noble came on board and he wanted to protect his “baby”. There were limited special effects in the film so Noble doesn’t class it as a science fiction film in the same vein as Gravity and Ex Machina – he shies away from them and has great regard for Sheldon Differ and Tempe’s work on them. Johnasson’s character in the film was envisioned by Noble as an Eastern European view of the West. The way things are put together in a way that doesn’t look bad but doesn’t have a Western eye. The majority of Johansson’s clothes were from the high street (Next, Forever 21 and River Island) except for a Dolce and Gabbana camisole and Mulberry boots – that had to be heavily adjusted for the scenes in the wood.


Harry Potter has been mentioned earlier but this was the first time the series was fully examined with Temime. The question was whether she felt pressure entering a series but Temime said that she started working on The Prisoner of Azkaban before The Chamber of Secrets had come out and by that point the films were just successful children’s films. Cuaron wanted to make the film for teenagers so both of them went into the process knowing that they would be changing the aesthetics of Potter dramatically. The films got bigger as she went along and generally the process got easier – Azkaban was the most difficult film. The problems Temime had were making the cast look younger on screen and getting them to separate themselves from their characters. Allusions were made to on-set antics from the cast…Temime clearly has stories to last a lifetime! There was mention of The Goblet of Fire being less easy to work on due to Mike Newell taking a more “Chris Columbus” view of the series but when David Yates came on board with The Order of the Phoenix she was able to continue with her established style and had more and more freedom.

The final point came with requirements of a director. Talent, vision, clarity and an understanding of the process of a costume designer.

Questions were a little monopolised with my most loathed question: what advice would you give? The designers were all helpful and generous with their advice.

Overall, the talk was fascinating and the three designers gave the impression of being long held friends. Temime in particular was full of joy, laughter and you can be sure that with some alcohol in her she’d tell you some wonderful gossip. I wish the best of luck to Sheldon Differ and Noble tonight at the BAFTAs but in my heart of hearts I believe that Milena Canonero has got the award sewn up for The Grand Budapest Hotel. Unfortunately neither are nominated for the Oscars but they are both nominated in the Period Film category at the Costume Designer’s Guild Awards (once again against Canonero).

Hope this was an interesting round-up and sorry if it went on – they were all so fascinating!

S x

(This talk only referenced a few of each designer’s films so don’t forget to check out their other work!)

The Costumes of ‘Agent Carter’ that Already Make it Great

It may not have escaped your notice that a) there is an Agent Carter TV show about to start (but not in the UK because TV schedulers are ridiculously stupid) and b) I freaking love Agent Peggy Carter and Hayley Atwell. Proof to be found here, here,  here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. Told you. Agent-Carter-poster-570x760 So Agent Carter is set in 1946 after the events of Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) but before those of the Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter (2013). Peggy is working for the Strategic Scientific Reserve (SSR) dealing with the sexism that accompanied women working in the 1940s. The imdb synopsis for the show is ridiculously inaccurate: Screen Shot 2015-01-03 at 20.01.18 Yes Peggy was involved with Steve Rogers but that wasn’t all that she was. Moving on. This post is mostly to appreciate the costume design work by Giovanna Ottobre-Melton that we’ve already seen in promo pictures. I’m excited and so should you. The images gathered below have been released by Marvel and, I think, are all from the first two episodes.HAYLEY ATWELL Peggy’s blonde! She’s undercover! In a gold low-cut dress – very different from the dresses we’ve seen Peggy wearing so far.HAYLEY ATWELL, DOMINIC COOPER I just included this for the shoes.agent-carter-1-800 Wide lapels with both the blouse and jacket and the blouse lapels are beautifully edged to add structure and focus. Adds a contrast with the stricter tailoring of the jacket.B6RrJ5XIYAAtvni.jpg-large More tailored 40s but with some gathering at the waist to soften the shape and pink detailing to brighten the navy blue.2051104_CA_Agent_Carter_KDM_ A different version of the earlier wide lapelled jacket and blouse but different shapes. My favourite part is the double lapels on the jacket.Agent-Carter-600x450 More blouse and fitted jacket combination but this time – check out those pinstripes! Amazing! The waist dart that finishes just below the bust changes the pinstripes and gives further detailing. The horizontal pinstripes at the centre front are another detail that adds to the suit.HAYLEY ATWELL

Here is a better photo of the edged wide lapelled blouse – reminds me a little bit of Peggy’s blouse in CA:TFA.

Ottobre-Melton is the fifth costume designer to take on Peggy Carter: Anna B. Shepherd in CA:TFA, Ellen Mirojnick and Timothy A. Wisnick in MO-S:AC and, briefly, Judianna Makovsky in Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014). She’s got some big shoes to fill but these images fill me with more anticipation and happiness.

S x

5 Things That Need To Stop in 2015

Another year has passed, and so much hasn’t changed. World, I’m ashamed of you.  As you might remember from previous years, this yearly list doesn’t tackle big issues like racism, sexism, how dreadful Richard Ayoade is, or the fact that people are stupid enough to buy something called ‘Smart Water’. No, this is basically just a list of stuff that has annoyed me this year, so I think they should stop. As ever, don’t worry if there are things on this list that you disagree with, because just remember – your opinion doesn’t matter to anyone but you. Happy New Year!

5. Clunky shoes

Look, I don’t know what the hell is happening here, but fashion is going backwards – and not in a good way. I’m all for self-expression (I’m not, I’m really not okay with it and I believe that we should all wear government-issued uniforms and live in Levittown houses) but these clunky shoes are the fugliest things ever.

Don't disagree with me, because you are wrong

Don’t disagree with me, because you are wrong

Do you remember the 90s? I remember some of it – not because I was WASTED and having MAD BANTZ but because I was a child, you numbnuts, an innocent, beautiful child. And these shoes were around back then, at the same time that the Spice Girls tried to bring them back. Sadly, no matter how many times I asked my mum if I could get a pair she’d always reply “No, you idiot, you’re already freakishly tall for your age, the doctors think there’s something wrong with you”, and I’d have to attend birthday parties in my flat shoes like some kind of penniless cretin while my peers strutted around in their colourful platform shoes. Well, the jokes on you, mum – I topped out at 5’4”, so can I get my clunky platform shoes now?

Er, on seconds thoughts, no. But speaking of the Spice Girls…

4. Geri Halliwell

I’m tired of the Spice Girls trying it, to be honest. The Olympics thing was great and everything, but there’s no need for them to even try to have solo careers anymore, the time has passed. Baby’s happy on Heart FM, Mel B’s been on and off TV and done some fitness videos, Posh is highly accomplished in the fashion world, and despite my best efforts to make it happen, Sporty hasn’t fallen off the face of the earth. Earlier this year I had to write an article for some freelancing stuff about Geri Halliwell’s new music video. I hadn’t even realised that she was back on the music scene, and while part of me was hoping that it would be a cheeky bit of shameless (albeit painfully nasal) pop like at least 40% of Schizophonic (don’t act like Bag It Up wasn’t a banger), I knew we’d be getting something more along the lines of literally any fucking thing off of Scream If You Wanna Go Faster. Fair play to Halliwell, she was never the strongest singer in the Spice Girls, but she managed to get at least two albums out of being a personality, a celebrity, a household name.

So I watched the video, hoping that it wouldn’t be totally bloody awful.

As you can see, it’s the worst thing in the history of the world. Just look at these RANDOM characters! I like to think of them as the new Spice Girls.


Geri, you know what you’ve done wrong, but instead of trying to fix it with another song, please just re-release Schizophonic…

3. Stupid things

I hate stupid things, and I’m sure you do too. Remember the thing I just said about shoes? Those are stupid things, and like many things, they need to stop, and fuck off forever. Ahem.

26th Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival - Day 3

2. Politics and economy

I’ve looked over previous “Things That Need To Stop” posts that I’ve written, and I’m worried that the things I’ve chosen in the past have been sort of frivolous and petty. So I’ve decided to tackle some political issues here, going to be really serious for number two (hahah poo). Here goes…

Politics, eh? The bloody economy and all, arrrgghhh, mental isn’t it? It’s like, who are we even voting for? Corporations and that. Mansion and bedroom taxes, I’m like, LibDems and Question Time, you know? To summarise:


Nailed it.

1. Twitter

Right, number one (hahaha, wee-wee) really is serious business. 8da5034e526a4d293d6a8b90ab53f93f

Twitter, I’m sick of you. You people out there, on your phones, thinking your opinions matter and posting pictures and manually retweeting things just to comment “LOL” and “I’m dead”, you’ve ruined what Twitter was meant to be; a place where bird-watching enthusiast could get together to update one another on their weekly, even daily bird-sightings in a safe environment. And then you people came along, you people with your jokes and your pictures and your hashtags – did you know that the first ever hashtag was #LesserSpottedWoodpecker? No, I don’t suppose you did. I’m determined to make 2015 the year that Twitter dies. Look what Twitter is capable of.

It has given young girls across the world a way to hate other girls they’ve never met, purely for the reason that they like different boybands who don’t even know they exist as individuals. It has made it possible for people to join in Twitter conversations just to make hyperbolically hateful, sexist, racist, or homophobic comments because they can hide behind the anonymity of an egg avi the internet. It has made it increasingly difficult for people around the world to enjoy a television show spoiler-free because idiots don’t understand how to just shut the hell up about the big twist or reveal in a show. I truly hope that 2015 is the year that Twitter just stops because I’m sick of people and people are mostly on Twitter these days. I just can’t escape them.

Then again, Twitter did manage to get Dapper Laughs to look like this:

Never forget.

Never forget.

So maybe it’s not all bad…

Women of the Year 2014

Malala Yousafzai


It would be impossible to have a list of the Women of The Year without including this phenomenal young lady. As the survivor of an assassination attempt and, at just 17 years old, the youngest ever Nobel Prize laureate, Malala continues to inspire women across the world with her campaign for human rights, particularly with regards to access to education for women and children in Pakistan and other countries. This is one woman who could truly change the world.

Sophie Hannah


Sophie Hannah’s books have been popular with crime and fiction fans for a long time, but it is her 2014 offering that has earned Ms Hannah a place on this year’s Women of The Year list. The Monogram Murders is the newest Hercule Poirot mystery – now, we know that it’s damn near impossible to fill Agatha Christie’s shoes, but we can’t think of anyone better to take a shot at it than Sophie Hannah.

Gillian Anderson


2014 was truly a great year for Gillian Anderson. Not only did her performance in the second series of The Fall get great reviews, she also had an award-winning run as Blanche DuBois in the National Theatre’s staging of A Streetcar Named Desire. And as if that wasn’t enough for Anderson to be getting on with, in October of this year she published her first novel, A Vision of Fire, which quickly became a New York Times Bestseller.

Jess Glynne

Jess Glynne Performs At Electric Brixton In London

On Clean Bandit’s absolute banger of a tune, ‘Rather Be’, Jesse Glynne’s voice was all over the radio this year. But rather than fade away like so many featured vocalists, Glynne released her own solo material off the back off the success of ‘Rather Be’; with her husky, soulful voice reminiscent of (and dare I say it, much more interesting than) Adele, the 90’s dance vibe of ‘Right Here’ has hopefully set Jess up for a solid music career.

Lupita Nyong’o


Sure, we included Lupita on last year’s list but that was before she won her Oscar, so she’s earned her place on this year’s list too! Not content to impress us with her powerful performance in 12 Years A Slave, Lupita’s classy and earnest acceptance speech at the Oscars earned her a place in our hearts. We can’t wait to see what’s next for her!

Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson


If you haven’t been watching Broad City, the Comedy Central sitcom about two twenty-something women in New York, you’re missing out. This weird and hilarious show centres around Ilana and Abbi’s fictionalised versions of themselves, struggling to make ends meet and always managing to get into weird situations. It’s bold, cool and most importantly, totally hilarious – I can’t wait for series two!

Jennifer Kent

Jennifer Kent

The Babadook was easily one of the best films of the year – utterly terrifying without relying on grisly shock-gore or worn out cliches, the sense of claustrophobic terror created instead by tricks of the light and clever sound editing. The character from the film, Mister Babadook, was so scary and popular that Kent is publishing the pop-up book from the film in 2015. Just try and stop me from buying it, I dare you, I DARE YOU

Men of the Year 2014

David Oyelowo


You may or may not recognise the name, but you will sure as hell recognise the man. Mr Oyelowo has been in some of the biggest films of the last five years – The Help, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and Lincoln to name just three – and this year was no different. With roles in Interstellar and A Most Violent Year, David’s career seems to be getting bigger and better, culminating in a brilliant performance as Martin Luther King Jr. in the highly recommended Selma. As our very own Sarah put it, he’s come a long way since Spooks.

Chris Pratt


Whether he’s Fat Pratt or Six Pack Pratt, we’re smitten with the Parks and Recreation star – his turn as Star-Lord in Guardians Of The Galaxy has seen him go from (please excuse this next word) cuddly, cute comedy actor to bonafide box-office banger. And before you say it, no it’s not *just* his looks that have us hooked – Pratt’s hilarious performance as Emmet in The Lego Movie appealed to viewers of all ages and his voice was perfect for the earnest and enthusiastic hero. And good lord was it difficult to make a decision on which picture of him to use for this post. I spent HOURS researching…

John Boyega


Since the end of November, there’s only one film anyone has been talking about, and it doesn’t even come out for another year – Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens. The trailer opens with a young man popping up on screen looking panicked and exhausted – that’s our John Boy(ega)! With a lead role in arguably the most hotly anticipated film of next year, we’re so impressed that the star of Attack The Block and Half of A Yellow Sun has seen so much success so early on in his career – and he’s still only 22 years old!

John Oliver


When Jon Stewart took a break from hosting The Daily Show this summer to direct his film Rosewater, he could have picked any of the show’s correspondents to stand in for him, and he chose the only British one. John Oliver did a fantastic job of hosting the show; he was already hugely popular with the audience, you could tell this from the rapturous applause he received whenever he hosted a segment. His brand of super-sarcastic, verbose humour was wasted on the absolutely dire Mock The Week, and he’s much better suited and appreciated in his role as a correspondent on a fake news show. Sure, he looks like a Jim Henson muppet come to life, but he actually did such a good job that he was given his own show on HBO, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, which is similar to The Daily Show but with even more sarcasm and a British accent – what more could you want? And speaking of The Daily Show alumni…

Stephen Colbert

Stephen Colbert

This year, Stephen Colbert was announced as David Letterman’s replacement for when the talk-show king steps down in 2015. While the DTSFT ladies agree that it would be nice to see someone other than a white, middle-aged man hosting a late-night chat show, we’re still pretty pleased with the choice that’s been made. Stephen has come a long way since his days as a correspondent on The Daily Show, landing his own show in 2005, The Colbert Report, which sadly came to an end in December with a final episode packed full of callbacks to earlier episodes and a sing-along with his favourite recurring characters and guests. It’s going to be weird to see him hosting as himself rather than the conservative character (also named Stephen Colbert) that he has played for so long, but we’re definitely excited to see what he has to offer.

 Kailash Satyarthi


Along with Malala Yousafzai, Kailash was the recipient of the 2014 Nobel Prize for his tireless campaigning for children’s rights. The access to education, which we in the Western world take for granted, has been a focus point for Mr Satyarthi, and his Nobel Prize was well-deserved.

Peter Capaldi


Here at DTSFT, we were delighted with the casting of Peter Capaldi as The Twelfth Doctor, as he made a nice change from the potato-faced Matt Smith. His turn as Mr Curry in Paddington also brought him to the attention of a new and younger audience, who will hopefully be tuning in to be utterly terrified by Doctor Who.  Mwuhahahaha!

Chris Evans, Sebastian Stan, and Anthony Mackie


Yeah I’m lumping them all in together because otherwise this post will go on forever – it’s the Captain America: The Winter Soldier gang! With Hannah’s insatiable lust for Sebastian Stan, there was no way the DTSFT ladies were going to leave this trio off the Men of The Year list. While we’ll have to wait for Captain America: Civil War to see the boys back onscreen together, you could check out ‘Playing It Cool’ for a cheeky helping of Evans and Mackie. We’re especially proud of Evans for his directorial debut, Before We Go, as well as his role in the dark action thriller, Snowpiercer – give it a UK release date, god DAMMIT!

Chadwick Boseman


Chadwick made waves last year with his role as Jackie Robinson in the magnificent 42, and it looks like the next few years are going to be no different for this versatile actor. After portraying soul legend James Brown in the biopic Get On Up, Boseman is set to star as the Marvel character Black Panther in not one but TWO upcoming Marvel movies – Captain America: Civil War and Black Panther. Chadwick, you complete and utter BANGER.

Jack O’Connell


Unlike some actors who seem to love the limelight more than the craft, Jack O’Connell is a young actor who has worked hard at his talent and is finally starting to get some recognition. After making his name with a role in Skins and films like Private Peaceful and Harry Brown, this intense young actor’s star has continued to rise and this year saw him in three of the most talked about films – ’71, 300: Rise of an Empire, and Angelina Jolie-directed Unbroken. From interviews I’ve watched, he doesn’t seem all too comfortable on the chat-show circuit, which I think makes for a better actor – the less we know about him, the more believable he’ll be in his roles.

The Apprentice 2014 Episode 11 – DTSFT Roundup


It’s the episode we’ve all been waiting for – no, not the final, where we get to see who actually wins this whole thing. No, we’re talking about the INTERVIEW STAGE! We all know that we’re watching it purely to see Claude get angrier and angrier as the episode goes on, but the other interviewers can be pretty scary too. It’s worth noting the absence of our beloved Margaret Mountford (WE MISS YOU), who is probably still studying her stupid classics or whatever it was that she thought was so much more important than being on television; and also the presence of Ricky Martin, himself a previous winner of The Apprentice.

Let’s get down to it – here’s the roundup:

“Dan, we need you to look like you’re working on something really, well, businessy”

“Sorted, mate, couple of numbers do ya?”

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.04.24

Was Solomon put outside in the garden for his own safety, or the safety of the other candidates? Or maybe he’s just not housebroken yet?

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.02.59

From the look on her face, Roisin has never said “I actually left my job to pursue this” out loud before

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.04.55

Even Mark can’t rock a denim shirt. Only our very own Sophia can get away with that.

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.02.05

Struggling without Felipe, Solomon?

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.05.51

But can you imagine living in that house at this stage? After all those times in the boardroom, fighting for your place by pointing out each other’s flaws and basically cussing them in front of their potential employer, it’d be so tense. I’d be the housemate from hell that week – trying to make everyone else edgy and worked up before the interviews. BECAUSE I’M EVIL.

See those two people in the lift in the building behind Lord Sugar’s shoulder? They were later assassinated by the BBC for fear that they might reveal which candidates made it through to this round before the series aired. Very sad, very sad indeed.

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.11.49

This bit of ‘subliminal messaging’


So the interviews then. Last year, I organised this post by each person – this year shall be no different.


The proposal:

roisin idea

Bit of a weird name, to be honest. I’d have gone with ‘Roisin’s Duck Wraps’. Sure, all the meals would have to contain duck and also be wraps, but that’s a risk I’d be willing to take if it were my business, all for a pun.

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.21.52

When Claudine asked this question, I said “No, but I eat food” as a joke, and then Roisin said this FOR REAL in the interview:

eat food

Yeah but, apart from herself, she’s done her research and she understands what people want, right?

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.38.50

No okay, we’ll move on. At least she’s got a unique idea, right? She’s found a gap in the market, low carb ready meals made with vegetable fibres, no-one’s done that yet, and she –

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 15.22.21

Yikes. Well, lucky for Roisin, she didn’t really get torn apart by the interviewers; there wasn’t really any shouting and screaming, apart from maybe Claude getting a bit shirty about credit

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Chill out, baldy. He’s just jealous, Roisin. Jealous that he has those unnecessarily long ears, and jealous that you reminded me of the Ghetto Superstar video in this bit for some reason

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How do you think it went though, Roisin?

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The proposal:


I’m already unconfident, Dan, I’ll be honest. You’re proposing an EVENTS company. People start those every day without Lord Sugar’s help. But hey, you’re an award-winning salesman, right?

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Uh-oh. Well, at least you can still stand behind the fact that you ‘made a profit of £15,000′ for a New years Eve [sic] event, and ‘raised £10,000 for Cancer Research’. And hey, let’s not forget you were ‘Footballer of the Year 2003 at Hornchurch Football club’, all very relevant to the business sector. I assume you haven’t won any awards for your grammar, though.

How has all that bragging about being ‘uneducated’ working out for you, Daniel? Or should I say, ‘under-educated’? Or even ‘under-exagger-ucated’? Fucking dimwit.

unde exagg

 I loved this bit, which is just as true out of context:


Is it just me, or do the chairs in Claude and Claudine’s interviews make the person sitting in them look really, really weird? Or maybe it’s just Daniel…

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He’s been a whiney baby through this whole series, but I doubt he’d be stupid enough to bring that ‘poor me’ attitude into an interview, I mean surely….



Proved me wrong again, Danny boy. Oh well. At least you gave me this amazing set of facial expressions to put into my roundup.


Oh yeah, and Daniel? The 90’s called – they want their worn out phrase back – NOT, HAHAHA. Not but seriously, they did call and they do want it back. In fact, you know what? They want the whole lot back, go on, fuck off back to 1997 and stay there.

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The proposal:


His interview with Ricky got off to a bad start for me, when Ricky couldn’t even highlight a single sentence in a straight line.

ricky highlighter

I mean, come on, Ricky, you’re better than that.

In fact, I find it hard to believe that Ricky Martin isn’t three children stacked on top of one another in a suit, à la Vincent Adultman from Bojack Horseman. I mean, look at what happened with the phone-call role-play.

Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.32.20Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 14.32.24ricky ring ring

Unprofessional, if you ask me. Then he messed Mark around, and to be fair I would have reacted in exactly the same way that Mark did. Mindgames.


Mark was also keen to practice his “I ain’t been edumacated, I’m just a poor Australian cobber tryin’ to keep the dingoes from the door” card between interviews. BORING.

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 And he made his business proposal all SNAZZY with quotes and graphics

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But all Ricky was interested in talking about was what he gets up to in the alleys and dog-parks of London.

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And sure, Mark’s business proposal is nothing new, but that hasn’t stopped ol’ Easter Island from having confidence in his idea.

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*said in Night of The Museum voice* Give me some gum gum

Also – either Mark is really tall, or this room is situated in that weird, half-height floor from Being John Malkovich.

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The proposal: 


Which I reckon is the best idea in this series, although surprise, surprise, this old white man can’t see a market for it


One thing I noticed from Bianca’s interviews is that while Mike and Claude discussed the actual business side of things with her, the interviews with Ricky and Claudine were either really poor or just edited that way, because this happened:

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And it all went downhill from there – on the part of the interviewers, that is. Because look at Bianca’s face. How can Claudine tell, from having just met Bianca, whether or not she has a personality? I have a theory about why she asked this, and it’s that she’s surprised to be face-to-face with a young, intelligent, composed black woman who challenges the stereotypes she has come to expect.


I personally find Roisin to be robotic, but no-one mentioned it to her.  I guarantee you that part of the reason behind these comments is that they honestly cannot get their heads around the fact that Bianca is so measured, like it’s a surprise to them that black women are actually capable of anything other than living up to some shitty stereotype perpetuated by television shows.

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You know, it’s shitty that she was forced into that uncomfortable conversation, which I reckon was done because they probably couldn’t find many (if any) faults in her business plan. But she got these comments from Nick and Mike in the feedback, which I think says a lot:



And finally, of course:


The proposal:

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He was as prepared as he was ever going to be…

nitty gritty

 Yes, it’s all in there next to some bunched up plasticine and a book of wordsearches where Solomon just keeps scribbling the letters of his own name over the letters he doesn’t recognise (11 out of the 26).

And his interview with Claude got off to an especially bad start


But more on that later. His interview with Mike Souter was, how shall I put this? Interesting. Solomon is from the ‘ideas generation’ though, he can handle it – after all, he’s so brimming with ideas that he’s constantly jotting them down on the Notes app on his phone. There’s no way to prove that, I guess, but-

pitch me some

Oh shit, called out, son. Fine, go ahead.


Oh god


“I got another idea. You do, like, a TV show with a businessman and you do, like, tasks every week and then the one left at the end goes into business with him”

Onto that flimsy business proposal, then.

half pictures

 I’m sure Lord Sugar’s money would be in safe hands, though

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And as I knew this would be Solomon’s last episode, I was hoping he’d give good face. He delivered.


Now, time for Claude.

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Aside from the awkward handshake moment, it started pretty well. Or so it seemed. Claude praised Solomon’s CV and his enterprising nature for starting a business while he was still at university. But then, having lured poor young Solomon into his compliment-laden trap, Claude went in for the attack.




The best moment of it was this – exactly how anyone else would have reacted after an interview like that.

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Fair play to Solomon, he told the others exactly how it went, rather than lying and pretending he breezed it.


 I normally don’t include bits from The Apprentice: You’re Fired, but I thought that this continuity needed to be pointed out:


Well said, that man.

So next week is the final, and if you’re reading this then you already know that it’s Bianca versus Mark. I am firmly TEAM BIANCA, because her idea is great and also she is awesome and deserves to win – she hasn’t been manipulative, she’s played clean and fair through the whole show. Plus she’s from Sydenham, that’s not too far from me and I want a local-ish girl to win – we already had a Croydon boy win X Factor, it’s time for South London and Surrey to TAKE OVER TELEVISION!

Don’t forget, the final is on Sunday night at 9pm followed by You’re Hired as basically part of the same show. See you there for muchos tweeting? Das ist gut.