Saturday, March 31, 2007

Cinetopia in Dulwich

Cinetopia is a monthly film, food and quiz night at the Crown and Greyhound in Dulwich, featuring a mystery film. The next one is on Thursday April 19th:

"Cinetopia brings you an intriguing and atmospheric thriller set against the stark Alaskan landscape in its 24 hour sunshine period. The well written plot avoids the usual simplistic good versus evil labels and the assured direction results in excellent performances and well-drawn characters. Tickets for Thursday 19 April are available now - see below for details. For information please email

THEMES: So far Cinetopia have themed events around an Argentinian heist thriller, an epic horror, writers and Hollywood, love sex childhood and the music of Abba, big-city corruption, contemporary French romance, comic space spoof, a classic western, a mystery thriller set in the culturally diverse streets of 1948 Los Angeles, a modern day noir, German counter culture, a classic ghost story, teenage angst, and a glorious technicolor musical.

WHY CINETOPIA?: Based upstairs at the Crown and Greyhound, an evening with Cinetopia means you get the atmosphere of a good pub, delicious food and a few drinks with friends, combined with a fun film quiz (points mean prizes) and a mystery feature film (you won't know what it is 'til it's started). Each event is themed around a 'mystery' film. We aim to offer a wide range of genres from classic comedies to hard-boiled thrillers - so there should be something for everyone.

TICKETS: Film, hot buffet, quiz: £10 IN ADVANCE. £13 ON THE DOOR. Doors open 6.15pm. Buffet from 6.45pm. Movie quiz 7.15pm. Film 8pm. To buy tickets for £10 IN ADVANCE please send a stamped, self-addressed envelope and cheque payable to Cinetopia (no cash or credit cards) for £10.00, to arrive no later than 1 week prior to the event to: Cinetopia 78 Gellatly Road SE14 5TT. Tickets will be dispatched on a first come first serve basis. A full house seats only 66 - so book early to avoid disappointment".

Friday, March 30, 2007

Portions for foxes

Nice article in The Guardian this week on urban foxes, written by Blake Morrison, in which he describes a recent South London scene: 'a few weeks ago there was one in the car park next to our local post office. It was playing with an apple and let it roll down the sloping grass mound and drop over the car park wall, before leaping down to catch it - and then returning to the top of the slope to begin again. I watched for 10 minutes. A driver in the van parked next to me was watching too, and we turned to shrug and smile at each other. Here we were, in a crowded city in the middle of the day, watching a fox play catch with an apple. It was magic. But then foxes have always been magic, wherever they are'.

When I lived outside of London I used to be a hunt saboteur, but I hardly ever saw any foxes - now I see them all the time. The best time for encountering foxes round here is in the early hours when they own the streets of South London. For some time I had a fox sleeping on a lean-to right outside the window at the back of where we live, but my favourite sighting was when I was working on Camberwell Road. There was a derelict piece of land, now built on, opposite the Clubland building where my office was. From my window I could see over the fence surrounding the site and regularly watch a fox and a couple of cats chilling out on a sofa on the site, like something out of a Disney movie.

Blake Morrison's article by the way was part of plugging his new novel South of the River which looks like it should be of intersest to transpontine enthusiasts. Morrison teaches at Goldsmiths in New Cross but I'm not sure where he lives.
Cute Urban Fox image from Urban Fox Press -check them out.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Source of the Ravensbourne

I went down to Keston ponds - just beyond Bromley - at the weekend, a nice place for a walk in its own right but of special interest to South East Londoners as the source of the River Ravensbourne.

The river starts as a trickle from a spring, Caesar's Well (pictured), gradually gaining momentum as it passes through Bromley, Catford and Lewisham before it reaches the Thames at Deptford Creek.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Wednesday Filmfest

No fewer than three interesting independent film nights in South London tomorrow night (Wednesday 21st March).

At Cafe Crema (306 New Cross Rd, SE14), Class Acts presents 'Land and Freedom', Ken Loach's film about the Spanish Civil War. £4 entry includes delicious veggie food. 7.30pm for food, 8.00pm for film.

At the new Camberwell Squatted Centre (192 Warham St, off Camberwell New Rd, Camberwell SE5) they're showing The London Nobody Knows' (60mins)A classic walk thru vintage 1967 London with James Mason (on far right of picture). Markets! Cockneys! Caffs!Gor Blimey, Gov! Handsome! 7:30 pm start, donation.

Finally FLIXATION 'returns with an eye riot night of no-budget underground cinema, digital monkey business, art and craft Film, amateur performance and music. Featuring the final installment of the celebrated Paul and the Badger trilogy (Paul Tarrago 2006), suburban sound sculpture in Lure of the Local Lark (Peter and David Sant 2006) and heart wrenching meleodrama in Girl with Cigarette (Gene Splicer 2007)'. At The Miller of Mansfield, 96 Snowsfields, London SE1 3SS(Just round the corner from London Bridge Station). 8pm, membership £4/ £3.


Some interesting Italian radical film bits and pieces at Goldsmiths this week, according to this invite from The Micropolitics Group of PoCA (The Political Currency of Art group):

"During Franco Berardi's visit to the Micropolitics Group in February, he narrated the worker's strikes in 1977 Italy as a 'refusal of unhappiness'. The question was asked: what are our options today? Join us for an open enquiry into the possibilities for refusal of work (and unhappiness) as we search for inspirations and celebrate the end of term. It's an open mic, so bring a clip from your favourite work refusal video. So far, the menu includes fragments from:

La Classe Operaia Va In Paradiso (Working Class Goes to Paradise) - Director: Elio Petri, 1971

Surplus: Terrorized into Being Consumers, Director: Eric Gandini, 2003

Lavorare Con Lentezza (Working Slowly), Director: Guido Chiesa, 2004

Paz! Director: Renato De Maria

I soliti ignoti (Big Deal on Madonna Street), Mario Monicelli, 1958

Accattone, Pier Paolo Passolini, 1961

Refreshments will be provided. A compilation of the films shown will be made available after the evening to share. March 23, 2007 6PM, The Baths, Goldsmiths College, Seminar Room, Laurie Grove Baths Laurie Grove, New Cross".

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Beast of Bexley Returns

Perhaps she or he was hibernating.

The Beast of Bexley may have been spotted again reportedly scaring a paddock full of horses. Over several years there have been scores of sightings around the borough of a panther-like creature. Neil Arnold, founder of the Kent Big Cat Research Group, said a black creature was seen around two weeks ago in Cold Blow Crescent. He thinks the animal could have been a black leopard.

An eyewitness saw all the horses in a field behind his house appearing spooked and bunching together. He then claims a big, black cat with an overly long tail appeared in the field, stopped, then turned around and walked back towards trees and bushes. Mr Arnold, who has been monitoring big cats for 15 years, receives around 280 reports of sightings every year from across the county.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

New Squatted Social Centre in Camberwell

'Come visit the lastest social centre to open in South London. Opening day this Sunday 25 March, Potlatch Meal at Camberwell Social Centre,192 Warham Rd, Camberwell, SE15. Opposite the Union Traven, 2pm until late. Bring food, drink ideas and conversation to share'.

Lewisham Park Parakeets

The South London parakeet population is becoming increasingly ubiquitous.
I spotted these birds in Lewisham Park a couple of weeks ago.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Drakefell Road Rabbit God

This human-size statue of a rabbit must have confused many travellers on the busy Drakefell Road down to Brockley Cross. It stares out silently from outside Greenstreet housing co-op (in itself an interesting sight, a wooden self-build project backing on to Telegraph Hill Park).

At least I assume its a rabbit, it could just as easily be a hare, or at a push the Egyptian underworld dog deity Anubis.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Top of the Pops

The Wolfgang Bopp up their game by putting the heroic Art Brut on at Goldsmiths College on Friday 23rd March. It's £7 concs and advanced, £8 door and The Metros and Winter Kids are supporting along with DJ-ing from the Boppers and Angular Records.

Full details are:
Date: Friday 23rd MarchDoors: 9pm - 3am
Price: £7nus/adv, £8 on doorVenue: Goldsmiths College, Dixon Road, New Cross, SE14 6NW, Tel: 0208 692 1406. Nearest Tube/BR: New Cross

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Vampires in Borough High Street

This month's South East London Folklore Society features Tina Rath speaking on the Evolution of the Vampire - how Vampires have changed from the bloated, smelly peasants of History to the Byronic figures that are "pale, handsome and catnip to the ladies" that we know today.

It all happens on the 8th March at Old King's Head, Kings Head Yard, 45-49, Borough High St, London, SE1 1NA. Talks start at 8.00pm. £2.50 / £1.50 concessions. Contact:

The End of Slavery?

To mark the 200th anniversary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act, Blackheath Quakers are holding a publci meeting exploring modern forms of slavery featuring Kevin Bales, author of 'Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy'. The event takes place on Friday 23 March 2007, 7:30 pm (reception from 7 pm) at Blackheath Quaker Meeting House, Lawn Terrace, London SE3 9LL.

For a couple of recent perspectives on slavery see these articles at No Borders London.