Travelling hopefully

Highlights from NRK’s ten-hour Nordlandsbanen train journey programme In December the Norwegian broadcaster NRK put on a ten-hour transmission of a train journey. Filmed from the front of a train cab travelling along the Nordlandsbanen line between Trondheim and Bodø (a distance of 438 miles), the programme gained one million viewers, or a fifth ofRead More

The newsreel man

A recent article by Andrew O’Hagan in the London Review of Books has caused quite a stir. Written in the aftermatch of the Jimmy Savile scandal, it exposes a culture of child abuse from past decades perpetrated by various BBC personalities. One of these was the commentator and producer Lionel Gamlin. As a historian ofRead More

Changing channels

I spent a fascinating, exhausting and illuminating two days last weekend attending the conference of the Federation of International Television Archives (FIAT/IFTA), which was held at the British Library. FIAT/IFTA is a representative body for those archives, commercial and public sector, that care for the world’s television heritage (its film equivalent is FIAF, the internationalRead More

Being Bean

Rather by accident, I saw the feature film Mr Bean’s Holiday yesterday. Catching the opening credits while channel-hopping, I imagined that I’d stay with it for a few minutes and ended up, well, almost captivated. It’s a well-constructed comedy about Mr Bean’s haphazardous trip through France in the company of a lost child. It adroitlyRead More