The Wolf Pack hits the road, tasked with finding Chow...
About Flix Capacitor
Hello there! I’m an Edinburgh-based film critic and broadcaster, and this is my personal website. Not enough information for you? Well then this page should provide the answers you’re looking for. As well as a few that you aren’t.
Rather than offer a big sprawl which would only be read by my parents, the odd online punter and some stalkers (keep up the good work!), I thought it best to do a Q&A. This way, I can offer details to things I think people might be interested in. As such, my shoe size and inseam are not included. So, without further ado, let’s begin with ‘your’ questions:
Where am I?
Physically, I don’t know, but I’m guessing near a computer of some sort. With regards to website, you’re on Flix Capacitor - the site I conceived, maintain and co-designed with the help of talented web developer Darren Huskie.
What the hell is a Flix Capacitor?
If you get the site’s title, then you’ve found the film and TV site for you. If not, you’re welcome anyway. Still wondering? It’s a reference to Back To The Future (one of my all-time favourites), where the car is powered by a Flux Capacitor. Flix obviously comes from “the flicks”, as in the cinema. Got it? Good. As something of a pun-master I’d love to take credit, but the name actually came from my buddy, Ross.
Who are you and is this your full-time job?
As stated above, I’m a freelance film critic and broadcaster from Edinburgh, Scotland. I’ve been writing film reviews and content since about 2005. At the moment, I contribute to the BBC, STV, Empire Magazine, Metro and a handful of others, while in the past I’ve also written for Total Film, ShortList, The List, The Skinny and a few University publications.
How did you get into reviewing?
Well I’ve always loved movies and TV shows, pretty much since I left the womb. But for whatever reason, I’d never considered this being a career or study path. However, as my very first University lecture began (I was studying Sport and Recreation), our tutor put a clip of Ben Hurr on and it felt like being a film student. I loved it.
Now, I stuck with my course for the full duration, but during this I realised that I actually enjoyed writing essays. Seriously. It dawned on me that I loved putting the words together and creating something. So, I decided to fuse this with my habit of staying up till the early hours watching boxsets.
After finishing my first Honours Degree, I spoke with my Dad about going back to Uni to study film and he said “Go for it. You only live once so do what you have to do.” Great advice. Then, I went straight into third year of a Film and Media course, began writing for the University paper and it went from there.
How did you get your site to look like this?
A LOT of hassle. The condensed version is this: I consider myself a reasonably intelligent guy, but without any remote kind of website design training or education, I wasn’t just up a river without a paddle - I wasn’t even in a boat. Deciding to use blogging software that would cut all this out for me, I eventually found WordPress and settled with that. Having printed off the ENTIRE CSS code (49 enchanting pages of techno-babble) so I could try to modify the site myself (IE, changing a line at a time to see what it did), I realised I was still out my depth. Advertising for a designer, I sifted through the various fee quotes (everything from £2000 to £10 an hour) and was lucky to locate web developer Darren Huskie (for those too lazy to scroll up, here’s his page again) who did all the behind-the-scenes work.
How did you get into movies?
I guess through my family. My Dad introduced me to James Bond (not literally) at an early age, my Mum took me with her when she worked in a video shop so I could watch films on the counter and my Grandad showed me that there’s often more going on in a movie than meets the eye (using Manhunter as the example). Also, my Gran let me watch a film everyday at lunch (well, as much as could be fitted in), my Auntie shared her passion for Tom Cruise flicks and my Uncle digests almost as many as I do. Then at University I missed about 89% of morning lectures as I was up late the night before watching movies till all hours. Good times.
What is your favourite movie?
Like many film fans, I don’t have a definitive answer here as it’s just an impossible question. It depends on my mood, what I’ve seen recently, what way the wind is blowing and a hundred other factors. However, I put together a list of ten favourites, which then morphed into something which included a second ten. And then some more. I then also made a list of TV shows, and these can be seen here.
Who is your favourite director?
My favourite is Chris Nolan, followed by James Cameron. After that, I also like Sam Mendes, David Fincher, Ang Lee, Michael Mann, Ken Loach, Duncan Jones, John McTiernan, John Carpenter, Kathryn Bigelow and Sidney Lumet.
What are the downsides to doing what you do?
Not having enough time to see and review everything I want to. Since I started writing, the volume of both movies and shows I watch has diminished greatly (as time is re-allocated to critique them).
Anything not covered, feel free to get in touch.