Alpha Community


Ersatz localisation vs. the real deal: can you taste the difference?

Given how quickly the ad was pulled, there’s a chance you might have missed one of the most shocking marketing faux pas of recent years. But the woefully misguided Pepsi advert featuring reality star/model Kendall Jenner still leaves a bad taste in the mouth. Across the Internet, commentators were (for once) in total agreement: this […]


Toni Erdmann, the man behind the fur

The film Toni Erdmann has been marketed (in Britain, at any rate) as a German comedy (though it is a German-Austrian co-production. To be precise, it’s been marketed as “Hey, look, the Germans do have a sense of humour!”, but ‘comedy’ is not the right word. The word ‘peculiar’ was the first word to pop […]


Sunset Boulevard

Made four short years after Frank Capra’s life-affirming It’s a Wonderful Life, Billy Wilder’s masterful noir, Sunset Boulevard, is Hollywood at its darkest. It absolutely revels in, not only the dark heart of Hollywood, but all the cynicism and reality-biting life of post-war America.


The Birds at Brompton Cemetery

The red sun sets on what is an unseasonably mild evening for this time of year as the artfully lit cloisters on either side of us frame the main event: Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. On a big screen. In a Victorian cemetery.


1984, The Playhouse, London

The oppressive, punishing din of a black noise from the abyss syncopated with flashes of blinding white light, with no possible means of escape from the claustrophobic theatre seat I am inhabiting, my nonchalant fiancé to one side and a row of students to the other.