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Friday 10th July, clear blue sky, cooler. No swifts.

Finally watched Tony Palmer's Shostakovich biopic last night. I don't know why, considering the director, but I'd been expecting a sombre bio/historical drama. It's more of a Ken Russell puppet show, and if it hadn't been made for Channel 4, I'd have wondered what audience Palmer was thinking of, for a fairly demanding topic. I thought it was pretty good, though. The combination of stark black&white & surreal carnival effects works very well with the man's music and with the horror around him. Interesting range of reviews here and elsewhere! I must concur: if you're a big fan of Joe Stalin you should beware of this movie. It will only upset you.

I love red kites, always look forward to seeing them over the M40. I didn't know they did interior design, how nice.