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26 / 02 / 2023
Fantasy F1:
We've had 13 seasons of Forwardcharm Fantasy F1 ... and I think, finally, it's time to call it a day. I just don't have the energy for this kind of malarkey anymore. Thank you all for playing, it's been great fun. Enjoy your year!

20 / 11 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twenty-second and final race in Abu Dhabi are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. That's it for this year, see you back here next year to find out if I could be arsed doing it all again.

13 / 11 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twenty-first and penultimate race in Brazil are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. The FINAL race is in Abu Dhabi NEXT WEEKEND.

30 / 10 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twentienth race in Mexico are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Brazil in two weeks.

23 / 10 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the nineteenth race at Austin are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Mexico NEXT WEEKEND.

09 / 10 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighteenth race at Suzuka are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austin in 2 weeks.

02 / 10 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventeenth race at Singapore are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Suzuka, NEXT WEEKEND.

I've slightly changed the weightings of Alfa/Alpine/Haas to reflect their current performance.

11 / 09 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixteenth race at Monza are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Singapore in 3 weeks.

04 / 09 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifteenth race at Zandvoort are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monza, NEXT WEEKEND.

28 / 08 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourteenth race at Spa are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Zandvoort, NEXT WEEKEND.

31 / 07 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the thirteenth race in Hungary are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Spa in about a month, at the end of August.

24 / 07 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twelfth race in France are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Hungary NEXT WEEKEND.

10 / 07 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eleventh race in Austria are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is France in 2 weeks.

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.

03 / 07 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the tenth race at Silverstone are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Austria NEXT WEEKEND.

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.

20 / 06 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the ninth race in Canada are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Silverstone in 2 weeks.

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.

12 / 06 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighth race in Azerbaijan are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Canada NEXT WEEKEND.

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.

I've slightly increased the weightings of the Mercedes pair as their woes seem to be continuing.

29 / 05 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventh race in Monaco are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Azerbaijan in 2 weeks.

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 / 05 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixth race in Barcelona are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monaco NEXT WEEKEND.

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 / 05 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifth race in Miami are (finally) in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Barcelona in 2 weeks.

24 / 04 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourth race at Imola are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Miami in 2 weeks.

I've slightly reduced the weightings of Norris / McLaren because they're doing particularly well at the moment.

10 / 04 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the third race in Melbourne are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Imola in 2 weeks.

27 / 03 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the second race in Saudi Arabia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Melbourne in 2 weeks.

I decided not to change the weightings again for now. Let's see how the next couple of races go.

20 / 03 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The results from the first race in Bahrain are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Saudi Arabia NEXT WEEKEND.

I have made some quick changes to the weightings - Haas seem much stronger than I expected and McLaren/Aston much weaker. I might tweak them again after Saudi.

13 / 03 / 2022
Fantasy F1:
The 2022 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 the night of Friday 18th March to qualify for the first race in Bahrain.

12 / 12 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the final race in Abu Dhabi are in, and we have our 2021 winner! Check the results or see where your team finished.

05 / 12 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the penultimate race in Saudi Arabia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. The next and final race is Abu Dhabi NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 10th December.

21 / 11 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the twentieth race in Qatar are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Saudi Arabia in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 3rd December.

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.

14 / 11 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the nineteenth race in Brazil are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Qatar NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 19th November.

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.

07 / 11 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighteenth race in Mexico are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Brazil NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 12th November.

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 / 10 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventeenth race in Austin are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Mexico in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 5th November.

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 / 09 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixteenth race in Russia 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 22nd 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.

26 / 09 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifteenth race in Russia are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Turkey in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 8th 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.

12 / 09 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourteenth race at Monza 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 24th 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.

05 / 09 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the thirteenth race at Zandvoort 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 10th 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.

29 / 08 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
That was a weird one. The results from the twelfth "race" at Spa are in, and somebody got a MASSIVE score... possibly the highest we've ever seen in one week. Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Zandvoort NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 3rd 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.

01 / 08 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
Well that was exciting, wasn't it? The results from the eleventh race at Hungary are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. We are in the summer break now, the next race is Spa in four weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 27th 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.

18 / 07 / 2021
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 30th 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.

15 / 07 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
Bit of a problem with these new sprint races. Qualifying is now on the Friday. I don't really want to mess with the rules mid-season so we'll carry on having teams locked on Friday night, which means you can already see the qualifying results. But the scores are based on the GRID, not the qualifying, so effectively it's the result of Saturday's sprint race. We'll run with that for now and see how it goes. So cutoff for edits for Silverstone is still midnight GMT on the night of Friday 16th July.

04 / 07 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the ninth race at the Red Bull Ring are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Silverstone in two weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 16th 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.

27 / 06 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the eighth race at the Red Bull Ring are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is the second of the Austria double-header NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 2nd 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.

20 / 06 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the seventh race at Paul Ricard are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is the first of an Austria double-header NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 25th 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.

06 / 06 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the sixth race at Azerbaijan are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Paul Ricard in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 18th 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.

23 / 05 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fifth race at Monaco are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. **NOTE** Leclerc still gets points for his grid position even though he didn't start the race, because the rules say we go with the grid on f1.com. Next race is Azerbaijan in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 4th 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.

09 / 05 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the fourth race at Barcelona are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Monaco in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 21st 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.

02 / 05 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the third race at Portimao are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Barcelona NEXT WEEKEND. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 7th May.

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.

18 / 04 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the second race at Imola are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Next race is Portimao in 2 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 30th 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.

The weightings for Alpine have increased because they've been a bit shit.

28 / 03 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The results from the first race in Bahrain are in! Check the results or see where your team finished. Second race is Imola in 3 weeks. Cutoff for edits is midnight GMT on the night of Friday 16th 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.

21 / 03 / 2021
Fantasy F1:
The 2021 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 the night of Friday 26th March to qualify for the first race in Bahrain.

 

 

Broken Flowers

Broken Flowers

Cast: Bill Murray, Julie Delpy, Sharon Stone, Alexis Dziena, Jessica Lange, Tilda Swinton, Frances Conroy, ChloŽ Sevigny.

Written and directed by Jim Jarmusch.

Story: An ageing lothario travels around the US in search of his son.

Running Time: 1hr 46 minutes.

UK Certificate 15.

 

Broken Flowers is a slow, subdued affair that wouldn't catch your eye if it was on in your living room. In a cinema though, it comes alive and turns into a carefully crafted chronicle of an episode in a hangdog's life. Good job Bill Murray was free then.

If looks could kill, you wouldn't nick Julie Delpy's sandwiches. The beginning is less than impressive. We're beyond the day that we're forced to watch the credits - something minor should be happening to divert those of us - the majority - who don't care who the director or lesser players are. The very first scene has the mail-woman delivering Bill Murray's significant pink letter - it would have been far more effective to follow her for a minute or two while the credits played, rather than the dull white screen with postmarks floating by. However, once we're introduced to Bill Murray's Don "with-a-T" Johnston, we're transfixed. Director Jim Jarmusch knows exactly how to use Bill Murray's minimalist skills and the camera lingers on him, as if waiting for him to spring into action at any moment. This, of course, never happens - which sounds like it it would drag like a paralysed pekinese, but thanks to Bill Murray's inexplicable watchability, in fact has the opposite effect, the time flying by like a collie from a cannon.

Alexis Dziena and Sharon Stone, hoping that if they stare long enough, Bill Murray will say something. As Bill Murray travels the country searching for the son he's just learned of, he meets up with a bevvy of big names, many of which are playing against type and are largely unrecognisable. Sharon Stone and Tilda Swinton (the barge woman from Young Adam and Angel Gabriel from Constantine) are particularly anti-stereotypical (and extremely effective), while Jessica Lange (The Postman Always Rings Twice) creates a totally believable kooky "animal communicator" in a marvellously memorable scene. Only Six Feet Under's matriarch Frances Conroy stays within her usual parameters, but still to great effect. Jarmusch coaxes excellent performances from the whole cast, including Jeffrey Wright's beautifully subtle detective novel fan who helps Bill Murray track down his lost son. The finely judged performances plus the careful, mildly amusing script and the skilful direction combine to make Broken Flowers one of the sleeper hits of the year - and there's nudity in it too! I shan't spoil the moment as you need to be surprised by it - but it's by the unknown 21-year old Alexis Dziena and is well worth the entry price!

Broken Flowers is not for the masses - it's slow and reflective with no excitement whatsoever - but it's better than Lost in Translation and will easily hold your interest if you're into subdued movies like Solaris or Sideways. I liked it a lot.

I enjoyed this film: 4/5

I think the average moviegoer will enjoy it: 3/5

Testosterone Satisfaction Rating: 2/5 - one very impressive moment of nudity by Alexis Dziena, some effing.

To enjoy this film you should: not need fireworks for your kicks.

 

Broken Flowers is on general release in the UK now.

 

Your comments

The comments printed here are not necessarily the views of Forwardcharm!

 

If you're a Bill Murray fan and expecting the comic performances of Groundhog day or Ghostbusters or the gangster send-up in Mad Dog and Glory, think again. Imagine the droll performance as Hoffman's sidekick in Tootsie, but even more so. Murray's minimalistic acting in this film is really to convey his character as a burnt-out Don Juan. That said, although the film appears slow-moving and the storyline simple, the 1hour 46minutes goes very quickly as you are drawn into his quest for the mysterious writer of the pink letter, and one is left with a thought-provoking conclusion. The film is also supported with an impressive list of stars in the cast.
Herb

 

I'm off to see this film again tomorrow? Why? because I went to see it last week without having read any reviews. Had I done so, I would have realised that it's not a mystery movie. Doesn't mean that I didn't enjoy it - I did - a lot, but free from the pressures of expecting the mystery to be solved, I can enjoy it 100% for what it is. Like Sideways, watching this movie is the equivalent of luxuriating in a warm bath. The performances are understated,to say the least, and the cinematography just superb.

As to the start of the film - I can't help wondering whether there is a clue there in the location of the mailbox where, presumably, the pink letter was posted....
mark piper