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ClandesTime 177 – Ice Station Zebra

While it is now considered a Cold War classic Ice Station Zebra was a flop when it was first released. This week, I review Ice Station Zebra and analyse the development of the film, how it differs quite radically from the book, and why the DOD rejected an early version of the script, leading to a total rewrite. From the National Reconnaissance Office to the addition of suspicious Russians, this is a case study in how state-sponsored Cold War cinema truly operated.

Latest Posts
Watergate, the Mark Felt Biopic and the FBI

Watergate, the Mark Felt Biopic and the FBI

In my latest article for Shadowproof I examine the FBI's role in the Mark Felt biopic Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House.  Using documents obtained under FOIA and an interview with Ed Gray, the son of FBI acting director Pat Gray (who is depicted in Mark ...
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Unthinkable

How the FBI Spied on and Rewrote the Torture Thriller Unthinkable

The 2010 thriller Unthinkable courted controversy by depicting the torture of a suspected terrorist who claims to have planted nuclear bombs in three US cities. Despite a strong cast including Samuel L Jackson, Carrie-Ann Moss and Stephen Root it was released direct-to-video and lost money. Recently released documents show that ...
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Just When I Thought I Couldn't Hate Game of Thrones Any More...

Just When I Thought I Couldn’t Hate Game of Thrones Any More…

There are many reasons to dislike Game of Thrones - the endless hype, the gratuitous sex and violence in lieu of a meaningful plot, the experience of having to listen to fans of the show blather on long after you've told them you don't watch the show and aren't interested.  ...
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Don't Shoot the Looters - Military Script Notes on Deep Impact

Don’t Shoot the Looters – Military Script Notes on Deep Impact

Deep Impact is one of a pair of twin films released in 1998 that were based around a giant meteor colliding with earth. The film and its twin, the more successful Armageddon, were both supported by NASA and the Department of Defense. Inevitably, this meant script changes to fit in ...
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ClandesTime 177 - Ice Station Zebra

ClandesTime 177 – Ice Station Zebra

While it is now considered a Cold War classic Ice Station Zebra was a flop when it was first released. This week, I review Ice Station Zebra and analyse the development of the film, how it differs quite radically from the book, and why the DOD rejected an early version ...
Read more
Armando Iannucci

Subscriber Podcast #29 – Media Breakdown: Armando Iannucci at Chatham House

On this month's subscriber-only podcast I break down a 2016 interview with British political satirist Armando Iannucci by Chatham House, a.k.a. the Royal Institute of International Affairs. Topics include the EU referendum, the election of Donald Trump, the re-emergence of both Left and Right wing populism, how to combat fake ...
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Official Skripal Story Changes Yet Again, This Time with Added Ducks

Official Skripal Story Changes Yet Again, This Time with Added Ducks

According to the New York Times, the official story we’ve been told about the Skripals isn’t true, and wasn’t true when the UK government told it to us ...
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The Pentagon Worked on Every Major Military Movie for Over a Decade After WW2

The Pentagon Worked on Every Major Military Movie for Over a Decade After WW2

The post-WW2 period was the zenith for military and war movies - over 200 were made in the 1950s, and the same in the 1960s.  According to an entry in the DOD's Hollywood database they provided support to every major military movie for over a decade, putting an entire genre ...
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Veteran of Sadr City Ambush Exposes The Long Road Home as Shameful Propaganda

Veteran of Sadr City Ambush Exposes The Long Road Home as Shameful Propaganda

One of the veterans of the ambush in Sadr City in April 2004 has revealed that National Geographic's film The Long Road Home is a shameful piece of propaganda that butchers history and ignored offers of help from the squad who were actually in the firefight in order to present ...
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Pentagon Contracts Show US Army Subsidized Production Of National Geographic’s ‘Long Road Home’

Pentagon Contracts Show US Army Subsidized Production Of National Geographic’s ‘Long Road Home’

Production assistance agreements released by the Defense Department show the United States military used taxpayer money to subsidize part of the production of the National Geographic series, “The Long Road Home,” and a companion documentary ...
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Keanu Reeves Trains With Former SEAL/CIA Contractor for John Wick III

Keanu Reeves Trains With Former SEAL/CIA Contractor for John Wick III

In what appears to be little more than a promo for the third John Wick film, a recently-released video shows star Keanu Reeves being trained by former Navy SEAL and CIA contractor Shawn Ryan.  A veteran of the war on terror, the video shows Ryan teaching Keanu how to walk ...
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How the Hell is Project Blue Book so Boring?

How the Hell is Project Blue Book so Boring?

UFOs.  Probable extraterrestrials.  Investigation and revelation.  Nazi scientists.  A military cover-up.  With all these elements in place the History Channel's Project Blue Book should be an exciting, unpredictable replacement for The X-Files.  Instead it is a dull-as-dishwater procedural that lacks tension, drama and political relevance.  ...
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