Damsel – A Dragon Story

Although my picture may not represent the Irish dragon who lurks beneath a mountain in this Netflix movie, it captures the mood of the film. In this post, I review this entertaining movie which stars Millie Bobbie Brown and Nick Robinson.

Lasting 1 hour and 49 minutes, this adventure story depicts the joining of two important families by marriage. Elodie (Millie Bobbie Brown) is brilliant as the girl who is betrothed to a prince in order to fix her father’s financial difficulties.

Unfortunately, after the marriage, Elodie is dropped into the cave where an evil dragon dwells. She was meant to be an offering made to keep the dragon away from the medieval town.

My Thoughts

The initial wide images look a bit like cartoon scenes as the special effects are less sophisticated than you would find in the cinema. However, that is soon forgotten as you get sucked into Elodie’s adventure.

Millie really shines in this movie. With Ray Winstone playing her dad and Angela Bassett as her step mum, she is in good company.

I really enjoyed the twists and turns that the main character took as she tried to escape the dragon. Her awkward relationship with the prince (Robinson) was also interesting.

This was never going to be a heavy script with social issues grappled with. It was, though, hugely entertaining and a good piece of escapist television.

If you want a distraction and to be taken off to a medieval world where a dragon threatens civilisation, this is certainly worth checking out.

I totally recommend spending an afternoon following this narrative. Damsel is satisfying, fun and was a Number 1 success on Netflix.

Read, Watch, Listen – March

It has been a while since I did one of my monthly roundups of entertainment suggestions. This feature samples a book, a TV show and a podcast that I am currently enjoying.

Check out my reviews and see whether any take your fancy. This month I mention a drama set in Asia, a fanciful story about The Queen and a really funny podcast about death.

Read – The Uncommon Reader – By Alan Bennett

Thinking about the Queen in her prime, this story imagines her becoming a bookworm.

If the monarch started neglecting her duties due to a bookish obsession what might happen?

Alan Bennett explores this subject cleverly with gentle narrative and witty skill. It is a rather short book but nonetheless satisfying. With a book stuffed behind the seat of her state event carriage and a constant desire to quiz guests about their reading, it makes for an entertaining read.

Watch – Expats – on Amazon Prime Video

Nicole Kidman plays Margaret, an American lady who came over to Hong Kong with her husband and ended up staying longer than expected.

The reason for this was tragic. Their youngest son went missing during a visit to the well known Hong Kong night market. The six episodes follow various characters, including the young nanny, the housekeeper and various wealthy Expat friends.

Listen to – Where There’s A Will, There’s A Wake

Kathy Burke hosts this hilarious podcast which interviews stars about their ideal deaths, funerals and wakes.

Kathy is well known for her funny roles in ‘Kevin and Perry,’ ‘Gimme, Gimme, Gimme’ and ‘Absolutely Fabulous.’ I have even seen her direct an Oscar Wilde theatre play.

She is clever and scathing, known for her no-nonsense honesty and potty mouth.

The first interview she did involved Jennifer Saunders and she had me laughing my head off.

And Finally

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my recommendations. Hopefully something grabbed your interest.

Feel free to share your thoughts on one of these in the comments.

If you like my articles, perhaps also consider following my little blog for future similar content. I write reviews of books, movies and TV shows as well as discussing environmental problems and sharing life hacks.

My First Time As A TV Extra

OK so this takes me back to 2018 when I had my very first chance to be a TV Extra.

Having applied online to add my name to a database for ‘Supporting Artistes,’ I was quickly offered several days of work which I politely turned down.

I wasn’t being rude. They were just so spread out. I remember having the chance to work on a huge movie but I had to be free on eight separate occasions spread over two months.

This particular TV Extra job cropped up in North London during the school holidays and it was perfect for me.

I was so excited to be able to visit the set of a big TV drama series, even though I knew nothing about what the series was.

On The Day

I drove all the way to London and stopped off at a petrol station for a wee. I was nervous after all and worried I may not have time to go to the toilet when I arrived.

Driving into the field where the crew mobiles were was daunting. I showed my ID and found a good spot, then made my way over to the reception area.

A helpful third assistant director (3AD) signed me in and reminded me that I would get very little help (so he was glad I was experienced). I immediately told him that I had never been an Extra before and he told me not to say anything.

GREAT! I was having to act right from the start. Pretending to know what I was doing was harder than I could have imagined.

So I made my way to the costume fitting mobile and was greeted by a very friendly dresser who introduced me to a white coat and some brand new Welly boots.

I was then taken over to the make up room where a very chatty lady began trimming my hair and trying to find the right shade of sideburns to stick on.

Before you know it I was bundled into a minibus and driven somewhere else. I had no idea that this wasn’t the actual filming location.

A Disused Hospital

The only thing I knew for sure was that I was filming a scene based in a morgue. I had been told I would be a mortuary assistant in the background of a scene where dead bodies were being looked at.

Arriving at the old hospital, I could see there were many more vans and several people wandering around with head sets on.

Soon I was taken to the room where the make up people looked at the screens to check that the characters looked right. I sat there for a while before eventually being called into the morgue.

Another woman sat next to me and introduced herself as the other Extra. Having another TV Extra to work with who had some experience was a bonus.

After a few minutes a woman came up to me and asked me to go outside with her to sort out my Wellies. She explained that they needed to look aged and she would spray stuff onto them and then scuff them up a bit.

As I stood there with a helpful person scraping away at my boots, a middle aged guy came and stood next to me and lit up a cigarette. He was talking to another man, who I didn’t recognise, that was dressed as a detective.

Drifting off, I suddenly awakened again as I heard him saying, ‘This is different to working on Game of Thrones.’

Game of Thrones was my favourite TV Show!!!

Instantly I found myself studying his mouth and knew that I recognise him but still couldn’t pluck his name out of the air.

‘Cersei…Cersei.’

Suddenly it hit me.

It was King Robert Baratheon himself. My fellow Extra asked him for a selfie and he obliged. I stood starstruck, while my boots were still being scuffed.

He stepped back onto set and I was called to do my first ever bit of background acting.

My hands were sweating but I knew I just had to get on with it. As I approached the incredibly detailed set, I was astonished at just how many people worked there. It was a hive of activity.

More to come in part two…