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11 / 11 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twentieth race in Brazil are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Just one race to go - Abu Dhabi in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 23rd November.

28 / 10 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the nineteenth race in Mexico are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Only two races to go - next race is Brazil in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 9th November.

22 / 10 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighteenth race in Austin are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Mexico NEXT WEEKEND! Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 26th October.

You can still enter a new team for the final three races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

07 / 10 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventeenth race in Japan are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austin in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 19th October.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

*** Some of the weightings have been tweaked *** for the final four races - check the league page for details.

02 / 10 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixteenth race in Russia are in! (Sorry for the delay - moving house!) Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Japan (Suzuka) THIS WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 5th October.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

16 / 09 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifteenth race at Singapore are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Russia in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 28th September.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

02 / 09 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourteenth race at Monza are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Singapore in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 14th September.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

26 / 08 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the thirteenth race at Spa are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monza NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 31st August.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

29 / 07 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twelfth race in Hungary are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. We're into the summer break now, the next race is Spa in four weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 24th August.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

22 / 07 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eleventh race at Hockenheim are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Hungary NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 27th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

08 / 07 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the tenth race at Silverstone are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Hockenheim in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 20th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

01 / 07 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the ninth race in Austria are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Silverstone NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 6th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

24 / 06 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighth race at Paul Ricard are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austria NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 29th June.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

10 / 06 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventh race in Canada are in, including the travesty that is Danny Ric not getting fastest lap. Sigh. Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Paul Ricard in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 22nd June.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going. Oh and by the way, half of us are being beaten by my girlfriend. So we might need to up our game a little.

29 / 05 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
Sorry for the delay! The results from the sixth race in Monaco are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Canada in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 8th June.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

13 / 05 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifth race in Barcelona are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monaco in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 25th May.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

29 / 04 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourth race in Azerbaijan are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Barcelona in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 11th May.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the previous races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

15 / 04 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the third race in China are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Azerbaijan in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 27th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

08 / 04 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the second race in Bahrain are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is China NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 13th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going. It's worth doing - if you'd missed Australia and then picked the perfect team for Bahrain, you'd be in the overall lead now! Special congratulations to The Big G, who jumped from plum last to 3rd place, largely due to the inspired choice of Pierre Gasly.

Note the Williams weightings have been increased due to them being shite.

25 / 03 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The results from the first race in Australia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Second race is Bahrain in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 6th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first race - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

18 / 03 / 2018
Fantasy F1:
The 2018 season is now open for entries! You can change your team as often as you like so you might as well pick a team now while you're thinking about it. You can always read the rules later! You have until midnight GMT on Friday night (23rd) to qualify for the first race in Australia.

26 / 11 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
It's all over! The results from the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi are in! Check the results or see where your team finished and see who won the championship!

That's the lot for 2017, come back in 2018 just before the real season starts and we'll do it all over again!

12 / 11 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the nineteenth and penultimate race in Brazil are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Abu Dhabi in two weeks, which is the final race of the season. Nobody's going to catch Bunch of Wasters in the lead, but it's all to play for underneath. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 24th November.

29 / 10 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighteenth race at Mexico are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Brazil in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 10th November.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

22 / 10 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventeenth race at Austin are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Mexico NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 27th October.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

08 / 10 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixteenth race at Suzuka are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austin in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 20th October.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

If you have Carlos Sainz on your team, you'll keep him at Renault. If you have Jolyon Palmer then you'll score for Sainz who replaces him.

01 / 10 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifteenth race at Malaysia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Suzuka NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 6th October.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

17 / 09 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourteenth race at Singapore are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Malaysia in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 29th September.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

03 / 09 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the thirteenth race at Monza are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Singapore in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 15th September.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

30 / 07 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twelfth race at Spa are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monza NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 1st September.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

30 / 07 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eleventh race in Hungary are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Spa in four weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 25th August.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

16 / 07 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the tenth race at Silverstone are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Hungary in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 28th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

11 / 07 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the ninth race in Austria are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Silverstone THIS WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 14th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

25 / 06 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fantastic eighth race in Azerbaijan are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austria in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 7th July.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

12 / 06 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventh race in Canada are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Azerbaijan in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 23rd June.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

30 / 05 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixth race in Monaco are (finally) in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Canada in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 9th June.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

18 / 05 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
If you want Jenson Button on your team for Monaco, pick Fernando Alonso as JB is his replacement at McLaren for this race.

14 / 05 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifth race in Barcelona are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monaco in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 26th May.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

01 / 05 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourth race in Russia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Barcelona in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 12th May.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed all the races so far - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

17 / 04 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the third race in Bahrain are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Russia in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 28th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first three races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

09 / 04 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the second race in China are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Second race is Bahrain next week. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 14th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first two races - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

26 / 03 / 2017
Fantasy F1:
The results from the first race in Australia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Second race is China in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 7th April.

You can still enter a new team even if you missed the first race - you'll get a late starter bonus to help you get going.

 

 

The Manchurian Candidate (2004)

The Manchurian Candidate Cast: Denzel Washington, Liev Schreiber, Meryl Streep, Kimberley Elise, Jon Voight. Directed by Jonathan Demme.

Story: A retired army major questions his memories about a key military engagement in the Iraqi desert.

Running Time: 2hrs 10 minutes.

Certificate 15.

 

Imagine building a house of cards. Carefully and painstakingly you build the foundations, propping up each pair of cards at the appropriate angle, always aware of the goal of a complete structure that looks impossible but thanks to the skill and patience of the architect, stands proud in all its wobbly glory. The Manchurian Candidate is like a house of cards, but unfortunately Jonathan Demme ran out of cards for the final two layers and used sausages instead.

Liev Schreiber as presidential and Manchurian candidate Raymond Prentiss Shaw. The Manchurian Candidate is a remake of the 1962 John Frankenheimer film of the same name, this time set in 2008. Denzel Washington takes Frank Sinatra's part of Major Marco, who was involved in the Iraqi conflict and is plagued by nightmares about an incident that occurred some years ago. The hero of that event has since entered politics and become a congressman (Liev Schreiber), aided in his political campaign by his domineering mother (Meryl Streep). Marco begins to suspect his memories when visited by another member of that unit who is having the same nightmares. That's all I can tell you without ruining it for you - until you see it, that is. The ending will ruin it for you anyway. It is most frustrating that I can't tell you why the ending is so poor because it would give away the plot - suffice to say that the story is carefully constructed with skill and expertise for the first 90 minutes, only to smash it to pieces in the final half hour with clumsy and malformed plot developments.

Meryl Streep, having read the screenplay. Leaving aside the denouement for a moment, The Manchurian Candidate is a very worthy piece of cinema. The performances all round are faultless and the story progresses nicely, giving away enough to keep us interested without letting us know completely what's going on. We are led towards a conclusion, without knowing whether it's going to end that way or not. We pick up little clues and try to work out whether they are genuine or red herrings and right up until the poo starts flying we are not quite sure which direction we have been going - this is all good, it's how a pyschological thriller should work - and there are even a couple of light moments within the clouds. The overriding quality makes it all the more surprising when the wheels fall off. It's not that the quality changes - it's purely the plot. So many holes, so many "why did they do that?" moments, so much disappointment at a good film ruined. I'm prepared to believe that all the holes were plugged in the original story, but in the movie we are not told enough, so we are left with big gaps in our understanding, rendering the whole thing a shambles.

So there we have it. Tha Manchurian Candidate is a well presented, beautifully acted psychological thriller, let down massively by the omission of necessary details. As a polished piece of cinematographic entertainmnent, it works nicely. As a cohesive story, it falls flat. The sausages are just too heavy for the cards.

I enjoyed this film: 2/5 (though the first hour and a half was 4/5)

I think the average moviegoer will enjoy it: 4/5

Testosterone Satisfaction Rating: 1/5 Spying and conspiracies are enough for 1 point.

To enjoy this film you should: Stop thinking 20 minutes before the end.

 

To buy the book, use this link:
The Manchurian Candidate [book]