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Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I always say you can tell how good a horror film is by the Lisa-shaped finger marks it leaves on your arm, and the number of hours of counselling required to get her over it. So with a bruise-factor of ten, and a scream mid-way through which suggested genuine mental trauma, I'd say The Descent was pretty good.

It started well, when I asked for two tickets, and the girl in the kiosk said "Six twenty". I thought blimey, that's a bargain, before realising it was approaching half past six, and she was confirming what screening we wanted to go to. After which she charged me a slightly less bargainous twelve quid.

As for the film, well according to the opening credits, it was made by Celador, the people who brought us 'Who Wants to Be a Millionaire'. Paul Smith was executive producer of both, though sadly he couldn't find a role for Chris Tarrant in this one. Which is a shame - I'd have paid good money to see him hacked to death underground.

Anyhoo, I have to say it was very entertaining, and more than a little scary. Though I managed to resist the temptation to join in the screaming which was going on in the seat next to me. And that's despite the pain of having my arm gripped like a vice every two minutes.

On the downside, I did feel that the creatures looked a bit like Marco from last year's Big Brother. But to be honest, that only made them scarier. All in all it was a very good film anyway (four and a half hot dogs out of five), and I'd recommend it to anyone who likes a bit of blood and guts of an evening.

Interestingly though, the excitement (and wanton violence) didn't end there last night. Lisa and I arrived back at the multi-storey car park to find we had the best seat in the house for a potential punch-up. Down below us at the Brighton Marina branch of McDonalds, a policeman and policewoman were busy having an animated discussion with two young men.

It was a bit hard to follow what happened next, but essentially the sequence of events appeared to be:

1. Two men sitting together outside.
2. Police force one man to move to another table.
3. Other man follows him, leaving behind his burger & fries.
4. A seagull starts eating the fries.
5. Another seagull makes off with the burger.
6. The animated discussions continue, oblivious to the fast food heist going on behind them.
7. The policewoman suddenly whips out her extendable baton and starts threatening one of the blokes.
8. The policeman follows suit.
9. The policewoman (clearly not a girl to be messed with) sprays one of the men in the face with a pepper spray for no apparent reason.
10. The policeman restrains the other one with no need for violence.
11. The policewoman sees her colleague's admirable lack of aggression, comes over, and sprays the other bloke too, just for good measure.
12. They call for backup, and eight police cars arrive.
13. Seriously. Eight.
14. I start taking photos with my mobile phone.
15. The two men are trussed up like chickens and loaded face down into a van, as the policewoman knees one of them in the back.

It was all very exciting anyway. Kind of like the Rodney King incident, but with less racism and more seagulls. I was tempted to start rioting in an effort to get a free McFlurry, but in the end we just went home. There's only so much screaming you can do in one evening.