Holy Blood, Holy Grail

holy-blood-holy-grailHoly Blood, Holy Grail – Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln
Dell – 1983 (First published 1982)

I finally bit the bullet and read Holy Blood, Holy Grail. This very stupid pile of shit is perhaps best known today as the blueprint for Dan Brown’s the Da Vinci Code, but it was a best-seller on its release and has had a huge effect on the formulation and popularization of conspiracy theories ever since. I never expected it to be any good, but I thought that I should read it to familiarize myself with modern grail lore before beginning some of the more dubious texts on that subject.

The main idea here, and we’ve all heard this one before, is that Jesus had a kid. The authors claim that Jesus was actually married to Mary Magdalen and that this pair had a child. Personally, I see absolutely no reason for the historical Jesus to have remained celibate. We don’t know where he was or what he was doing during his 20s. What do most people do in their 20s? They go out and ride whatever they can get their hands on. It would have been weird if Jesus was a virgin. I don’t need the evidence in this book to convince me that he might have had kids. I would be more interested in sensible reasons to believe that he didn’t. And less than 50 pages of this 450+ page book are actually spent discussing the evidence for a horny Jesus. The other 400 pages are taken up with the authors making complete idiots out of themselves.

So one of the authors, I can’t remember which one, read a book on his holidays one year in the early 70s. This book was about Berenger Sauniere, a priest in the south of France who had suddenly became rich in the late 1800s. There were all kinds of rumours about Berenger having found treasure of some kind, and the lad reading the book thought this was pretty interesting and decided to do some research on the mystery of the priest’s wealth. He went over to France and started looking for clues. While he was over there, somebody gave him an anonymous tip-off that there was a dossier of curious documents in a library in Paris that might contain information pertaining to this mystery. Sure enough, he goes to the library and there, in this dossier, are a bunch of cool documents that keep mentioning a weird sounding secret society. Convinced that he’s onto something big, the lad makes some photocopies, goes back to England and starts mashing his pieces of the puzzle together. A few weeks later he gets another call from his anonymous informant who tells him that a few more very interesting documents seem to have shown up in the secret dossier in the library. Our boy is on the next ferry over to France, and what do ye know, when he gets to the library, the dossier is looking thicker. This happens a few times over the next few years, and by the end, his friends and he have managed to piece together the peculiar history of the Priory of Sion, a mysterious secret society that has links to the Merovingian and Carolingian Dynasties of Medieval France, the Knights of the Round Table, the Cathars, the Knights Templar, the Rosicrucians and the Freemasons.

The authors use all the evidence from the secret dossier and a generous dollop of imagination to argue that the Priory of Sion is a secret society devoted to protecting the bloodline of Jesus Christ in the hopes that they will someday be able to reinstate his descendants as the rightful rulers of civilization.

The problem here is that the Priory of Sion is completely fake. It was made up by Pierre La Plantard, a dodgy Frenchman who believed that he was the descendant of some medieval French Kings. Him and his friends had been the ones putting the documents into the secret dossier all along. The whole thing was a load of absolute bollocks. Now, Pierre’s claim was that he was of Merovingian descent, but the authors of Holy Blood, Holy Grail were claiming that he was the direct descendant of Jesus Christ. He got a bit embarrassed about this and renounced the book. His mates that were involved the hoax came forth and acknowledged that they made up the whole thing. (As far as I can tell, the authors’ response to this was to maintain that their claims were true and to claim that La Plantard was lying about having lied.)

pierre-le-plantardPierre La Plantard (AKA Pierre Christ)

I knew that the Priory of Sion was made up before I read this book, and that made it a fairly excruciating experience. The ‘evidence’ presented in here is taken from novels, legends, the bible and hearsay, and the authors’ reasoning is absolutely infuriating. You’ll see their approach criticized in any review of this book; it really is terrible. It made me recall that of the protagonists in Eco’s Foucault’s Pendulum. (And I would find it very surprising if that novel, written in 1988, was not written partly in response to this book and how it had been received.) Leigh, Lincoln and Baigent accept any tangential idea that pops into their heads as long as it can not be immediately disproved. I have adopted a similar approach below to prove that Adolf Hitler was a descendant of Count Dracula:

Transylvania was under Austrian Hapsburg Rule between 1699 and 1867. This would have meant that things and people from Transylvania would sometimes have found their way back to Austria.

Count Dracula, Transylvania’s most infamous resident, although made famous in an 1897 novel, was actually based on a real person, Vlad the Impaler. Vampyrism is probably not a supernatural condition but some kind of hereditary disease, and so Vlad’s descendants would also have been vampires if he was one, which he probably was.

Did the bloodline of Dracula find its way into Braunau am Inn, the birthplace of Hitler?

Well that would explain a lot. We know that Hitler’s mother was born of peasant stock and had a thing for older men. (Hitlers dad was 23 years her senior.) Would she have been able to resist the charms of a tall, dark stranger with a mysterious foreign accent? I think not. If Vlad, or one of his descendants, had shown up on her doorstep, she would have let them drain her right then and there. Ok, I know at this point our argument might seem a bit tenuous, but if we continue with this line of reasoning, a lot of things begin to make a lot of sense.

Ok, so Hitler’s mother was definitely drained by a vampire, thus becoming a vampire herself. She got pregnant with a vampire baby. She tried to pass it off as her employer’s, but this baby had dark hair, like his real father.

Hitler was certainly responsible for a lot of bloodshed. Think about it dummy: Vampires love blood! Was his body ever found? No; he flew off into the night!

At this stage, anyone with an ounce of sense will agree that Hitler is a vampire and probably still alive. It would be utterly ridiculous to claim otherwise.

I did that in about 10 minutes, and I reckon it’s probably more entertaining  and no less sensible than the work of Leigh, Baigent and Lincoln.

Holy Blood, Holy Grail is a pile of shit, freshly emitted from a large hairy anus. At least the Da Vinci Code was superficially entertaining. This is just embarrassing. I wouldn’t recommend it.

This post marks two years of this blog. I’m going to become a dad at some stage in the next month, so things on here might be a bit slow for a while. Make sure you like the facebook page for future updates. Thanks for all the interest.

Illuminati Confirmed! – New World Order (The Ancient Plan of Secret Societies) – William T. Still

nwoNew World Order (The Ancient Plan of Secret Societies) – William T. Still
1990 – Huntington House Publishers

After a very boring introductory chapter, this book contains about 70 pages of tolerably silly conspiracies, but then it gets very, very boring. Just from the cover, I expected something similar to  Ed Decker’s Dark Side of Freemasonry, and I wasn’t far off. This is a book of conspiracies from the point of view of a conservative Christian author.

As far as these things go, it was fairly well researched. William T. Still is clearly a nutjob, but he’s competent enough to provide his references. The book contains nothing I haven’t come across before, but it was novel to see how the author managed to link the Atlantean origins of secret societies, William Shakespeare’s true identity, and the Freemason’s involvement with the Jack the Ripper murders. Still is the kind of wacko that Umberto Eco was making fun of in Foucault’s Pendulum.

truman
The central idea behind the book is that the Illuminati is a Luciferian/Satanic cult dedicated to exterminating religion, taking over the world, and bringing about the reign of the Antichrist. If America doesn’t adopt conservative politics and good old-fashioned family values, the country is going to allow itself to be taken control of by a small group of the super-wealthy who don’t care about anyone but themselves. The scary thing about this book is that you know that the people who read it and have taken it seriously are the exact same people who are going to vote for Donald Trump.

The Illuminati has recently reentered the public consciousness. Nearly every teenager in North America has seen the ‘Illuminati Confirmed’ memes. Why now? Maybe it’s because the idea of a small, faceless group of the super wealthy being in charge of America is actually less frightening than the faces of the small group of the super wealthy that clearly are running the country.

I WANT TO BELIEVE – Alien Encounters and The UFO Phenomenon

cool-ufo
A little over a year ago I did a post on three books from the Time Life Mysteries of the Unknown series. I decided to come back to the series and to read both of its books on aliens. The UFO Phenomenon was published first, and Alien Encounters repeats quite a lot of the same information, but there is a slight distinction in the subject matter. The UFO Phenomenon deals fairly specifically with… UFOs, while Alien Encounters looks more at abductions and contact. I was again impressed by the quality of this series. These books are lovely; they look and feel great, and they are surprisingly in depth. If you can find a complete set for a reasonable price, make sure to pick it up.

covers
UFOs exist. There have definitely been, and presumabably still are, things in the sky that have not been identified. That these objects harbour alien beings from other planets is far less certain. I try to keep an open mind about this kind of stuff. I have no problem believing in the likelihood that there is life on other planets, but the idea that those lifeforms could reach Earth is too much for me to accept. My knowledge of space travel is extremely limited, but I understand that the closest planets that could possibly support life are simply too far away for their inhabitants to ever bother coming here.

The UFO book was cool; I have read lots of other books about ancient alien theories and specific alien encounters, but I didn’t know much about the history of UFOs. It was interesting to see how the flying saucer turned an American cultural icon

billy-meier
I sometimes ponder over how modern technology has affected the acceptability of evidence of alien life on/around Earth. Nearly everyone has constant access to a camera these days, and there is no excuse not to document the spacecraft that are abducting us. At the same time, any form of digital media is susceptible to quick, easy and convincing editing. Not only that, but our skies are now so full of drones and other human made machines that we soon won’t bother to question what’s in the sky… This indifference will leave us vulnerable to external threats… In fact, the more I think about it, the more likely it seems that the aliens deliberately gave our governments their technology in an attempt to lead us into this complacency. We’re falling into their trap! Fuck it. All eyes to the skies!

tomatoman
The above picture is of a famous alien corpse known as Tomato Man. (I have digitally enhanced it for full effect.) The original photo looks like a burned pile of rubbish to me. Some people have wondered how the glasses frames right underneath the alien’s shoulder got mixed up in the debris of an crashed spaceship.

One of most fascinating things about UFOs and aliens are the people that worship them. One particular group, the Unarians, pop up a few times in these books. I had seen some bizarre videos about the Unarius Academy of Science on youtube years ago, and their appearance here convinced me to research them further. It turns out that they don’t believe in imagination. All imagined thoughts are actually memories of past lives. All science fiction is true. Star Wars is real.

The Unarians were led by a lady named Ruth Norman who claimed to be the latest reincarnation of the entity who had previously lived as the Archangel Uriel, Isis, Peter the Great, queen Elizabeth the first, Johannes Kepler, Buddha, Zoroaster, Emperor Charlemagne, Quetzalcoatl, the Dalai Lama, King Arthur and many other aliens and mythical characters. Ruth preached that the space brothers (friendly aliens) were going to descend to Earth and teach us their ways, but she died before this happened.

urielUriel, the Legend.

There’s a decent documentary on the Unarians called Children of the Stars that can be viewed here. It doesn’t criticize or question their beliefs; it merely presents them. The documentary goes on a bit too long, but it’s worth watching just to see how mental these people are. Here is the trailer if you are only a little interested, and if you’re super interested, here is Jello Biafra’s documentary on the same group of people.
There’s definitely similarities with the Church of Scientology (although the Unarians deny that they are a religious organization), but unlike L. Ron Hubbard, Uriel genuinely seems to believe her own nonsense. I think she was pretty cool.

rael
This silly looking gobshite also appears in the book. I noticed his interesting necklace and decided to google him. When an image popped up of the same lad in a white suit, I realized that I had seen him before. His name is Claude Vorilhon, but he calls himself Raël, and he claims to be the messenger of the Elohim (alien creators of humanity).

He appeared on the Late Late Show when I was a kid. I remember being very unimpressed by him talking about how Jesus had been an alien. (My, how the times have changed!) The interview stuck in my head, and I’ve only recently thought of looking him up, but I didn’t know his name. Once I discovered his name, I did another quick search and I found footage from one of his earlier appearances on the same show! Normally I dislike when talkshow hosts needlessly talk down to their ‘weirdo’ guests, but I have to say, Gaybo’s swarminess is actually pretty funny here. Apparently Raël wasn’t too upset by it anyway; he went on to appear on the same show two more times. (Unfortunately those episodes are not currently online.)

proof-of-alien-existenceA 5 year old drew this, and some people took it as evidence that aliens abducted him.

Reading these books, I wondered how often they were consulted by the writers of the X-Files. The Mysteries of the Unknown series were released between 1987 and 1991. The first episode of the X-Files was written in 1992. I find it hard to believe that some of the ideas for the show weren’t lifted directly from these pages. Just reading over the titles in the series, I’m able to think of specific episodes that refer to the content of nearly each book. In saying that, each of these books presents a fairly comprehensive overview of its topic, and if the X-Files writers weren’t taking their ideas from here, they were certainly getting them from more specific texts on the same topics. All of the mythology episodes (at least up to season 6) could easily have stemmed from the ideas in the two books I have just reviewed. We’re talking alien abductions, disinformation, alien human hybrids, implants, government conspiracies… all that great X-Filesy stuff.

Also, speaking of influencing hit TV series; check this out. There’s a small section at the end of The UFO Phenomenon that called to a mind a more recent science fiction show:
strangerthingsStranger Things, anyone?

I’ll leave you with this. It’s an image of some unfortunates being tormented by demons. It was included in a section on the book proposing that aliens could be the modern equivalent to demons. The similarity being drawn here is that aliens, like demons, have been known to probe their victims. Check out the demon in the bottom left corner. Observe his calm demeanour.

bold“In and out, I’ll lance her clout, Hi-Ho! Hi-Ho! Hi-Ho! Hi-Ho!”

Unseen Beings, Unseen Worlds – Tom Dongo

1Hummingbird Publishing – 1994

This is a real piece of work. Somewhere in the introduction or the first chapter, Tom Dongo claims to be an extremely skeptical individual who is unwilling to accept anything that he hasn’t been able to prove to himself. He then goes on to write a book about his personal experiences with remote-viewing, aliens, the astral plane, demons, telepathy, reptilians, ghosts, channeling, and banshees. One has to wonder what counts as proof in his mind.

I’ve read lots of books about stupid topics that were written by what seemed to be relatively intelligent authors. (I would have imagined that the sillier the topic, the smarter the author would have to be to convince a publisher to put out their work.) Take Preparing for Contact as an example. It is utterly stupid, but the author managed to sculpt all of that stupid into an impressively cohesive whole. Psychic Discoveries Behind the Iron Curtain is a truly moronic nightmare, but the authors had clearly done a huge amount of scholarly research. Unseen Beings, Unseen Worlds lacks any traces of cohesion or intelligence. The author is an ignorant, arrogant fool of a man who has absolutely no ability to make sense. This is proof that anyone can write a book; it’s just a bunch of ridiculous ideas that popped into the head of a stupid weirdo.

2Ned Flanders… Wait, sorry, I mean Tom Dongo

Mr. Diddleyongo is of the opinion that many cases of mental illness are actually just cases of possession. He believes wholeheartedly in leprechauns. He claims that he can leave his body and travel around the universe. He often talks to spirits from different planets and dimensions. The man is a fucking imbecile.

Imbecile he may be, but stupidity isn’t a crime; the really irritating thing about Tom is the way that he talks about himself. He’s a know-it-all plonker. But, this isn’t really a book about the paranormal; it’s a book about Tom Dongo’s imagination. The ironic, and perhaps most infuriating, thing about this piece of rubbish is that the second chapter begins with the sentence; “I think I have read or am aware of just about every paranormal, esoteric, spiritual, and metaphysical book in print and many that are out of print.” The arrogance of that statement really put me in a foul mood when I read it. I would imagine that Tom’s reading was probably limited to whatever books were on the paranormal shelf in his local library.

I was going to go on and talk more trash about Tom Dongo, but after some consideration, I have concluded that he probably has some kind of mental impairment, and so it’s not really fair to make fun of him. I don’t think that a healthy, normal person would be willing to publish anything this cringe-worthy and idiotic.

3My copy is signed by the author too! Aren’t you jealous?

 

Foucault’s Pendulum – Umberto Eco

fp
Ballantine – 1990 (Originally published in Italian in 1988)

Most of the books that I review here are either too shit or too enjoyable to be clever. This one however, while it is rather enjoyable, is a rather astute piece of writing.

The plot is surprisingly simple. I’ll outline it in a way that won’t ruin the story for you: 3 book nerds, for a laugh, decide to patch together a ridiculous conspiracy theory. After a short while, they, and others, start to take their conspiracy too seriously and things get fairly messed up. That’s it. But if that’s the whole story, why is the book 500+ pages long? Well, Eco goes into detail, a LOT of detail, on the conspiracy that his characters are creating.

While the book is filled with interesting facts from what must have been an absolutely enormous amount of research, it’s not so much the conspiracies that are of interest as it is the psychology and biology of conspiracies and arcane ‘knowledge’. To put it another way, this is not a book about conspiracy theories in the same way that the Da Vinci Code is; this is a book about how conspiracy theories work. (Eco, when asked if he had read the Da Vinci Code, claimed that Dan Brown was one of the characters in this book.) While this book will satisfy readers of conspiracy fiction by mixing and matching their favourite secret societies and magicians, it will also force that reader to contemplate how silly most conspiracies really are. The way Eco engages with conspiracies only to end up making fun of them is really tactful. He never denies that they’re fun and interesting, indeed he would have had to have been a severe masochist to have thought that and written this book, but ultimately, he gives very little credence to any of them. Ah Umberto, a man after my own heart!

I really enjoyed this book. The subject matter is precisely the kind of crap that I like reading about, and the characters were great too. It does get a little heavy on the details at times, and I’d recommend having a decent understanding of who the Rosicrucians, Gnostics, and Templars were before you start. If you do decide to read it and feel like you’re getting bogged down in the details of the eclipse that occurred during the 14th birthday party of the blind translator of a coded manuscript detailing the fate of an obscure heretical sect from Southern France, you can probably just skim through those paragraphs without missing out on crucial plot details.

The book opens with the narrator snooping around the National Conservatory of Arts and Crafts in Paris. He has an appointment at midnight under the Foucault Pendulum housed therein, and he is trying to find a place to hide where he will not be noticed by the security guards as they are closing up. When I discovered that my University also houses a Foucault Pendulum, I determined to recreate that scene to the best of my ability.

I waited until the 23rd of June, the same day that the book’s narrator goes to see the pendulum in the Conservatoire. Unfortunately, I found it very difficult to sneak effectively, as there were very few people around to be suspicious of me. Regardless of this, I surreptitiously tip-toed into the building, constantly casting glances behind me in the hopes that I was being trailed. When I got to the pendulum, Disaster! Somebody else was standing there looking at it. I contemplated asking if he was there for the same reason as myself, but in the interests of my own personal safety (and dignity), I decided against doing so. I pretended that I wasn’t interested in the pendulum; I walked straight by it, exited the building, and bought a cup of coffee in a nearby cafe. I waited maybe 10 minutes and returned. The coast was clear, so I took the following video and ran for it.

I fear they may have seen me leave the campus. I am in hiding now, but I know that they will find me eventually. All I can do is wait. I might as well sit here and look out the window at the willow tree in the garden outside.

It’s so beautiful.

 

Edgar Cayce on Atlantis – Edgar Evans Cayce

20160509_204712Warner Books – 1968

This is one of the stupidest, shittest books that I have ever read. I started reading it in February, but school got busy and I gave up on it. Things have eased up a bit recently, and I saw this piece of garbage lying on my shelf, mocking me and boasting to my other books that it been victorious in clogging my bullshit filter. “No!”, I said, “I shall not be defeated!” I picked up the book with renewed vigor, and forced myself to wade through 170 pages of handicap.

Edgar Cayce was a lad from America who claimed he was a psychic. I watched a shite documentary on him once, and I wasn’t very impressed. He would pretend to be asleep and then diagnose people’s diseases. He also gave people information about their past lives and that kind of crap. Somehow, I have amassed a small collection of books about him, but after reading this one, I imagine it will be quite a while until I read any more of them.

20160509_204445.jpgMy Cayce Collection

God, even thinking about explaining what this book is about is making me feel embarrassed. Reflecting on the fact that I knowingly spent several hours of my life reading a book by an idiot about an idiot for a bunch of idiots is making me think that I ought to find a new hobby.

So the idea here is that 12,000+ years ago, Atlantis was an island inhabited by spirits. The spirits wanted to interact with the physical stuff on the island, so they entered into living bodies. Or maybe they created the bodies; I can’t quite remember. Either way, these living bodies were not quite human; some had animal parts. Then, after a bit, some of the weird creatures turned greedy and a split occurred. Half of them remained sound, but half of them turned bad. The bad ones were called the ‘Sons of Belial’, and the good ones were called …something else; I’ll be fucked if I’m reopening the book to find out. So the two factions went at each other, and Atlantis was destroyed. The lads took off, probably in their nuclear powered flying machines, and a bunch of them ended up in Egypt.

When they got to Egypt, there were so many Atlanteans that the Egyptians didn’t know what to do. Somebody came up with the idea of bringing back RaTa. Now, RaTa, for those of you who weren’t aware, was a high priest who had been banished from Egypt. Anyways, RaTa was a bit of a genius too, and he managed to help the Atlanteans assimilate into Egyptian culture. This is how probably how the Egyptians learned about pyramid power and all of that shit. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention; RaTa, the diplomat, outcast, high-priest and all round hero of the story, was actually a previous incarnation of Edgar Cayce himself.  I can’t remember if the book ever mentions why he had been banished from Egypt. I personally suspect that it was for molesting young boys.

This book is a piece of dirt, fouling up my bookshelf. I started off reading it on the toilet, but I found that it gave me constipation. I’ll never read it again. Edgar Cayce was a stupid bastard.

Communion – Whitley Strieber

2016-02-02 22.22.00

Avon – 1988

Wow, what an utterly ridiculous book. Although the accounts herein are presented as fact, this book is often listed as fiction. Fiction or not, it’s not a plot driven book, and I feel that the most appropriate way to review it will be to paraphrase the entire text:

“My name is Whitley Strieber, and this book is an account of my abduction experiences. Twice in the year of 1985, I was taken from my bed by a gang of little men who then took me to a weird room in a crystal in the sky and stuck an ugly pipe into my crapper. That’s right folks. I was abducted, and the things that took me decided to jam a piece of their technology into my rectum; the alien contraption punctured my wrinkled rim and ruptured my shite-filled poobag. The dirty little bowsies were collecting a sample of my gick! [You might find it peculiar that anyone would want Whitley Strieber’s shit, but in fairness, Communion has sold 2 million copies!] Oh yeah, there was another weird lifeform in the crystal too. It looked like an insect, and it raped me. Well, I say rape, but I was actually pretty hard at the time! Can you blame me?

After this happened, I decided not to jump to any conclusions. I did however, start hanging out with Budd Hopkins, the UFO abduction expert. He recommended that I go see a hypnotherapist. I took heed of this good advice, and the hypnotherapist proved to me that I had actually been abducted a bunch of times throughout my life. He reminded me of the time that I built a rocket engine in my bedroom when I was a little kid. The aliens had told me how to make it, but afterwards they decided that I shouldn’t have that information so they burned down my parents house. How did I forget that? Silly me!

I’ve used the word ‘aliens’ a few times, but I’m not actually sure that it’s  spacemen who are abducting me. I’ve no real reason to believe that they’re from another planet. They might just be elves or fairies. Whatever though, they probed my asshole and I got the shag; I hope they come back soon!

At this point, I don’t really have much else to say, but I feel like I can probably write another 150 pages or so. I suppose I’ll just fill up space with eventless interview transcripts and a ton of mystical speculation. Fuck it, yeah, I’ll just make allusions to mythical figures and tarot cards, and my book will get really popular with brainless, new-age morons. They’ll ignore the fact that nothing in this book is remotely compelling, and they’ll all think that I’m really smart.”

That’s pretty much the entire book, although I’m not quite sure I’ve captured the arrogance of Strieber’s tone. It really surprises me that something this utterly trashy could be taken seriously by anyone.

I also watched the film version of Communion with Christopher Walken playing Strieber. I have to say that this was one of the few cases in which I far preferred the movie to the book. The film has pretty bad ratings according to what I have seen, but I thought it was as good a movie as could possibly be made of this rag. There’s something really awkward about the whole film, and the special effects are bizarrely bad. It mostly follows the book’s plot, but it gets fucking weird towards the end. The most bizarre scenes almost feel like a satire on the most bullshitty parts of the text. In fact, part of the reason that I liked the movie so much was that it felt like it was making fun of the book; you could watch the film and argue that it depicts nothing more than a dysfunctional family’s bizarre descent into hysteria.

There’s a story that Strieber saw Walken’s depiction of him and told the actor that he was playing the character too crazy. Walken allegedly responded, ‘If the shoe fits…’ I have liked Christopher Walken as an actor for a long time, but if that story is true, he is truly a king amoungst men.

The book was shit, but I enjoyed reading it. I have the sequel, Transformation, and I’m sure I’ll get around to reading that one too. If you do read the book, make sure to watch the film. I’m not sure if the film would be as enjoyable if you hadn’t read the book, but if you’ve made it this far through my review, you have all the information you need. (Although I still think it might take reading the 350 pages of the book to be able to really savour the embarrassment that the film must have caused Strieber.)

School is a nightmare at the moment, and posts will definitely be slow for the next couple of months, but I have some serious gems coming in the post that you are going to want to read about.