Film Mistakes That Might Not Be

There are plenty of articles and videos and even TV programmes dedicated to showing you mistakes in films. There are plenty; even big budget Hollywood films with entire job roles dedicated to continuity and accuracy, perfection is an incredibly high standard to demand. Mistakes get made and there’s nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, there are some mistakes in films with enough evidence to point to them being deliberate and clever details.

Bear in mind there are some spoilers ahead!

Pulp Fiction’s bullet holes

A pivotal scene in Pulp Fiction involves a man springing out of a bathroom and unloading a gun at Jules and Vincent. Unharmed, they shoot him and look in amazement at the bullet holes behind them. The mistake is, the bullet holes were there the whole time!

This works perfectly, though. Some are even behind where the two were standing so couldn’t have been misses. It makes much more sense that the gun fired no bullets and the characters simply hadn’t looked at the wall behind them yet.

It’s Tarantino; he wasn’t a huge star at this point so mistakes would be easy to make and hard to fix, but also he’s known for complicated points and being a film genius who might put in small details like that. Either way, it’s amusing to think of Jules’ religious epiphany about a bullet-bending miracle actually being caused by a lack of bullets entirely.

The Shining’s geographical weirdness

Kubrick is famous for not making sense and not giving a single damn about it. The Shining is no different, with most of the plot’s event happening without much explanation. While people are content to argue about WHY Jack/Johnny goes mad in the first place and needing multiple close watches to even understand the title, the geography often gets called a mistake.

The maze that is a major part of the end is huge and right beside the hotel doesn’t show up in earlier shots of the hotel. The window’s in the Torrence’s suite mean the room has to be a corner room, but lo and behold when Danny climbs out of the window we see that is isn’t. The huge ballroom cannot feasibly fit into the hotel.

Considering the other impossible geography such as rooms that would overlap and windows in impossible places, they’re almost certainly deliberate. The main goal of The Shining was clearly not to scare the viewer in a way they can logically think through, but to give an incomprehensible sense of wrongness. The impossible layout could be a series of oversights but still gives a strong feeling of the Overlook Hotel’s paranormal qualities.

Inception’s borrowed totem

In Inception, the team have personal ‘totems’ to help them know when they’re in a dream and when they’re in real life. No-one else can touch the totem or know how it works; this ensures it works differently in dreams than it does in real life. Cobb tells the viewer (via telling Ariadne) that his totem is the spinning top, and it belonged to his wife Mal before she killed herself. The mistake is that his totem won’t work because it’s not really his, and it’s clear that it falls over in the real world and spins forever in dreams.

This, of course, could be a mistake he is making in-universe, but it could be a deliberate diversion. Cobb is clearly paranoid; he checks his totem more than any other character and is continually worried that what he thinks is real life is a dream. For someone who misses his wife so much, it makes sense that he’d keep as much as he can of her, and for someone so paranoid it makes sense he’d keep not only the way his totem works a secret but even what it is.

So if Mal’s spinning top is a red herring and his totem is secret – adding another layer to Cobb’s character – what is his totem? It could be his wedding ring, which isn’t always visible; it could be Mal herself, as her being dead means she can only show up in dreams; it could be his children’s faces, which he doesn’t see until the very end. It could even be something he hides from the audience…

Jurassic Park and the Inaccurate Dinosaurs

Firstly, while the dilophosaurus is from the early Jurassic period and the brachiosaurus is from the late Jurassic period, the velociraptor, triceratops and tyrannosaurus are all from the late Cretaceous period. This millennia time gap aside, the dinosaurs don’t even look like the ones they’re supposed to be. Worst is the velociraptor, which is styled after the bigger, earlier deinonychus. While whether or not tyrannosaurus had feathers is still a hotly debated topic, the fact that these supposed scientists don’t blink at the blatant misnaming of species is odd.

Even the Jurassic dinosaurs are overtly uncharacteristic, brachiosaurus rearing up when it’s always been known they wouldn’t have been able to or dilophosaurus spitting venom despite that idea being a complete invention of the film. Further than this, DNA degrades over time and would, even in ideal conditions, only last a maximum of six million years. The enormous extinction event that killed the late Cretaceous dinosaurs was… sixty-six million years ago, long enough for perfectly maintained DNA samples to degrade to nothing eleven times other.

The theory is that the dinosaurs being cloned is a big fat lie, not from the movie makers but the park owners in universe. Cobbling together the DNA of various current animals, they created brand new animals that matched the publics idea of what certain dinosaurs would be. Easily named, big ticket dinosaurs like tyrannosaurus and triceratops. The scientists aren’t even there to check the safety of the park, but to check the believability! If the awe-inspiring idea could stop real palaeontologists from putting the facts together, the park’s creations would definitely trick the public.

Many films’ fainting henchmen

There are so many film mistakes that are henchman in group fights just falling down unhit. The background actor or stunt actor, skipped in the fight or in the wrong place, knows they need to die but won’t be hit and just fall over. There’s one in a Batman film, for example, as well as smaller budget films where there isn’t time to reshoot. There’s at least one in the Bond franchise.

While this is obviously not a deliberate decision but a best-of-a-bad-situation compromise by an actor, it might be that the character themself is falling down without being hit too. Consider being a henchman at the edge of a fight, slowly realising that you’re all fighting a legendary hero or surprisingly amazing fighter. Your coworkers are being smacked unconscious or even killed, and you have no chance or doing any better. You just fall down when you hope the hero isn’t looking, and hope to claim being knocked out by the hero later, if you even have a boss to answer to later.

This is referenced in Austin Powers when his father fights the henchmen and tells one, who hasn’t even got a nametag, that he should just lie down without a fight. He does. It’s a funny scene and, with the sheer amount of self-aware action films being made, there must be at least one film with a deliberate falling-unhit henchman for this reason.

Are there any others you’ve noticed or been told are mistakes, that you have a theory or explanation of them as not mistakes? Do you know a film where a henchman character falls down without being hit and it’s clearly supposed to happen? Do you just want to rant and rave about one of the films I mentioned? Leave a comment.


5 Things Cinema Staff Want You To Know

1: No, we cannot and will not let young people into age-restricted film without ID

The film is a 15; you can tell me you’re fifteen all you like and beg me to allow you in, but if you haven’t got ID then I won’t let you in. It’s the law, and if I let an underage person in I could be fined or even go to jail. Your wheedling might be because you’re a Secret Shopper testing our practises, or someone who sees might report me.

If you’re plenty old enough and feel offended that you get IDed, take a look around. Some people look much younger than they really are and other people look much older than they really are. If there’s any doubt of your age, even a tiny part, staff are required to check ID. If you’re old enough, bring something with your photo and date of birth; you can just take a photo of your passport!


2: Take your rubbish with you, or at least don’t stuff it in hard to reach places

The ushers have to clean up after you when you leave. It’s one thing to sweep up tonnes of spilled popcorn and pick up all the drink cups and popcorn buckets after a popular film, especially a children’s film, but it’s disgusting to pick up your dirty tissues and time consuming to tug large items from under chairs.

When you’re leaving a screen, take a millisecond to consider the human being cleaning up after you. If the ice cream cup is the same size as the seat’s cup holder, how is the usher supposed to get it out? If you push your rubbish under your chair, the chair folding up will make it harder to reach. If you have sweets wrappers and a popcorn bucket, it saves a lot of time if you drop them in it rather than presumably tossing them out like ticker tape. We love the people who pick up their rubbish and bin it, we like the people who stack their rubbish up in clear view, and we hate the people who make our job harder for no reason.


3: Don’t complain about paying too much for the popcorn and drinks if you aren’t even going to eat and drink them

Everyone complains about the price of the concessions, and the two arguments of why they’re expensive and how they aren’t compulsory are for another article. So, they’re expensive and people like to complain; enough people still buy them and are annoyed if there’s a delay or an item has sold out.

However, staff know from cleaning the screens that almost half the people buying popcorn and drinks don’t finish them; a ridiculous amount of cups and buckets just sit there at the end of the film, untouched. It’s annoying to know people fuss at the till about the cost of concessions and then just put them on the floor and leave them. Just stop whining and eat up.


4: When it’s incredibly busy, there’s nothing that can be done about the crowds or queues

When a popular film comes out, the school holidays start or its discount day, it’s going to be incredibly busy. There’s nothing that can be done about that, so if it’s too busy for you your best option is just to go home and come back another time. Somehow, people don’t seem to notice the sheer amount of people or somehow can’t comprehend that the reason they’re there is the same reason everyone else is too.

For some reason, people seem to think we’re hiding staff out the back doing nothing, or that staff are purposefully low, and have a go at the staff they’re served by as if the queues are deliberate. It’s incredibly annoying for people to walk through a massive crowd, queue for more than ten minutes and then be incredulous that the popular film they want to see is fully booked.


5: It really does make a difference to us how rude or nice you are.

A pair of small children who picked up all the booster seats in their screen not once but twice in one day were the talk of the cinema; such a lovely thing to do made all the ushers’ days and we made sure to thank them. A man who argued about age restrictions and shouted at the manager he made me call made an already stressful shift even worse. The seniors’ special is the best day to work, as they’re quite friendly and chatty.

This is another case of remembering that staff are humans. People don’t work in retail or customer service for fun, they do it because those are the jobs going, jobs pay money, and money can be exchanged for goods and services. Before you act like the cinema staff are you personal servants or even robots, think about how you would feel if you worked shifts in a high energy role and had to keep a happy friendly face on. There’s no need to for to take out your day’s problems on the poor person who sells you popcorn and the ticket to the current superhero movie.

101 Tips For Home Chores


  1. Most people know to wash white, black and coloured clothes separately, but washing each colour separately (or even by shade as well!) keeps your clothes brighter for longer.
  2. Put pillow cases and duvet covers on easily by starting with them inside out, then putting your hands in to each top corner. Hold the corners of the pillow or duvet, and shake the case right side out onto it without letting go of the corners.
  3. Get your sports injury or menstrual blood stains out by soaking your clothes in vinegar before washing as normal.
  4. Never lose socks in the washing machine again by washing them in one of those mesh bags for washing ‘delicates’ in.
  5. Jeans, designed to only need occasional cleaning, don’t need fabric softener and last longer without it – there are often denim settings for doing separate jean washes.
  6. If you’re the type to avoid washing your jeans, vodka elements odours and putting them in the freezer keeps them cleaner and darker longer.
  7. Sitting or crouching in front of the washing machine, if you can still see the back of the drum it’s not overfilled.
  8. Hanging t shirts, jeans and sportswear to dry prevents them getting wrinkled and saves ironing things that just need to be smooth.
  9. Clean your washing machine by putting a mixture of two parts vinegar, half a part bicarbonate of soda in as detergent on an empty, hot cycle.
  10. Hang brightly coloured items inside out to prevent colour fading.
  11. Avoid outdoor line drying if you have asthma or hay fever, as pollen and other things stick to the fabric.
  12. Dry items that might stretch, like sweaters, on a flat surface.



  1. Getting out of bed with some leg kicks not only wakes you up, but straightens the duvet out for making your bed.
  2. Fill your drawers like a filing cabinet rather than stacking things, to help you find things easier and quicker, and prevent making a mess by looking for certain items.
  3. Open the window while you tidy, even if it’s cold, to get fresh air circulating in the room and prevent that musty feet smell that can build up.
  4. Sit on the bed to change the duvet covers; there’s space for the duvet so there’s space to change the covers properly.
  5. To remember to change your sheets once or twice a month, line it up with the first of the month, payday or another monthly event, or any fortnightly event.
  6. It’s best to change your duvet and pillows with the seasons, so having a box under the bed with the light summer set, heavy winter set and regular autumn/spring set to swap makes it easy to wash (and remember) each change.
  7. Sort any clothes on the floor, bed or side into dirty and clean, with the clean pile sorted by type. Putting it all away at once, when you’ve finished, will make the task feel quicker and easier than putting things away as you find them.
  8. Dust plastic and wooden surfaces, and hoover fabric surfaces regularly to keep dust and dust mites at bay, as this is the room you’ll be breathing in for up to 8 hours straight.
  9. When you sort out your wardrobe, be ruthless. Get rid of everything that doesn’t fit, that you don’t like, and that has damage that you won’t or can’t fix. Bin things you know people wouldn’t want, and take the rest to charity shops, boot sales or friends and family that would want them.
  10. Make your storage part of your décor. A neat shoe rack at the end of the bed looks like a feature, not clutter; keeping things in a hang-rack on the back of the door looks nicer and is easier to use than a pile of things on a bedside table; putting your jewellery on an upright display shows them off far better than a box or tray full of bits and pieces.
  11. Keep a hamper or basket in your room and throw clothes you don’t want in it as soon as you decide it. Putting them in the wash with regular clothes or putting them back in the drawer to sort later just means you’ll forget you decided to get rid of them.
  12. Keep your mattress fresh by patting it down with a sponge, and laundry detergent in water. Dry it with a blow drier to stop it getting musty.
  13. Organise your bedside or getting ready table and keep it minimalist. This means you don’t accidentally keep things that are broken or out of date, and helps you find what you need quickly.



  1. Keep your toilet brush holder half-full of soapy water, so the brush is cleaned every time it’s moved or used.
  2. Avoid smudgy, smeared mirrors by rubbing them dry with newspaper.
  3. Wrapping vinegar soaked kitchen or toilet roll around metal taps to make wiping that grime and cloudiness off easy.
  4. Pouring cola down drains can help to unclog them when they’re draining slowly.
  5. Wiping your tiles off with a squeegee after a hot bath or shower to stop moisture build up and mould.
  6. Likewise, keep a spray bottle next to your bath or shower to give them a quick spritz after every use.
  7. Fill a plastic bag with lemon juice, tie it around the showerhead and leave overnight to get the residue off.
  8. Power clean the bathtub or tiles by attaching a scrubbing brush to an electric drill.
  9. Kitchen storage works fantastically in the bathroom; spice racks are great for your lotions and shampoo bottles, and those multilevel cake stands are fantastic for vertical storage.
  10. One way to clean the scum from your bathtub is by sprinkling salt on a grapefruit and using that to scrub the stains away.
  11. Get that mirror clean and perfect with black tea. Brew some nice strong black tea, multiple bags worth, and use it as your cleaner liquid. Go ahead and have a nice cuppa, too.
  12. Save one of your old toothbrushes to clean all kinds of things around the house.
  13. Give your no-slip bath mat a good clean by unsticking it and running the bath with laundry detergent. After a good soak, hang it to dry.



  1. If you have wooden chopping boards, get the ingrained dirt out by rubbing them with coarse salt and scrubbing the salty board with a lemon half.
  2. Lining the grill or toaster oven with tin foil before using it stops it getting dirty as quickly. Roll it up and take all the fat, spillage or other food mess with it to the bin or recycling.
  3. Clean the blender by ‘blending’ soapy water, rather than try to clean the sharp blades normally.
  4. Clean cheese graters by grating some raw potato, and just rinsing it off afterwards.
  5. Make it easier to clean food out of your microwave by heating a cup of water and chopped lemon first.
  6. You use the washing up sponge clean the plates you eat off of and cutlery you eat with, so give it a quick minute in the microwave to kill off dangerous germs.
  7. Designate a space next to your sink or near your dishwasher for dirty dishes, to make washing up and dishwasher loading quick and easy.
  8. Before you do your big shop, clear out the fridge and cupboards of old food and wipe down the shelves to make a clean space for your new food. It also helps you know what you need to buy!
  9. Even if you don’t feel like washing up right after your meal, run the water and put the pans and trays in to soak, wipe down the surfaces and scrape off the plates, so there’s less work when you do wash up.
  10. Don’t fret about cutting yourself cleaning up broken glass, use a piece of bread to safely pick up the tiny sharp shards.
  11. Empty the dishwasher or clear the draining board while you brew your morning tea or coffee. It’s time you’d just be standing and waiting, and it’s better to find a clean cup and tidy than to get one from the cupboard and leave the clean dishes to pile up.
  12. It’s easy to forget how dirty the tea towels get when they dry off our plates, but remember that they get warm and damp with every use. Swap them out every day if you can, to keep your cutlery clean.
  13. If you have a dishwasher, set it going before you go to bed. It’ll mean there are clean, dry dishes in the morning and not take any time out of your day.


Living Room

  1. You can buy microfiber cleaning cloths in high numbers for low prices. Don’t just use them to clean your specs, but wipe down your phone and computer screen too!
  2. If you have a ceiling fan, a pillow case is a nice easy way to dust the blades.
  3. To get rid of cobwebs on the ceiling or dusty ceiling lampshades, a regular broom will do the trick. If there are more fiddly parts, tie a fluffy tea towel to the broom.
  4. If you can’t realistically remove the sofa and chair covers to wash them, use carpet cleaner or a shampoo setting on the vacuum cleaner.
  5. Books, DVDs and the like can seem like clutter. Arranging them neatly in a good space, like next to the TV or beside the sofa, makes them seem more like they’re on a shelf.
  6. Using throw blankets and rugs makes cleaning quicker, as you can just pick them up and wash or shake them, leaving the carpet and upholstery underneath cleaner.
  7. If you have children, incorporating storage boxes and larger toys into the room’s furniture keeps tidying up to the same room.
  8. Baskets are the best thing to add to your living room. Suddenly the last few weeks’ worth of magazines are a tidy collection, the evidence of your stationery addiction is a useful stationery box, and your annoying amount of remote controls never go missing.
  9. Keep carpets clean if you have them by creating a ‘shoe space’ between the front door and the living room, and designating house shoes or slippers to keep your feet warm.
  10. Take everything off the shelves, dust or wipe them clean, then clean everything as you put it back. This not only gets everything very clean, but gets the shelf more organised and reveals anything that’s broken or unwanted.
  11. Keep a recycling bin in the living room so you can throw newspapers and magazines in there as soon as you’re done with them, to stop them piling up.
  12. Plump up cushions whenever you stand up to keep them fluffier and give the room that just-tidied look.
  13. Sprinkle baking soda over the carpet half an hour before vacuuming to get it extra clean. A spritz spray of vinegar or vodka helps with odour, too.



  1. Keep your long term documents such as birth certificates, passports and contracts in one folder, by person, easy to find when needed and not cluttered by other documents.
  2. Keep everything you need for budgeting and tax in one place, easy to go through and in date order, so you can work quickly and without confusion.
  3. You only need bank statements, receipts and similar for 3 months, so go through them every few months and throw away old documents to stop them piling up.
  4. Clean keyboard with sprayed air. There are cans designed for this, with narrow plastic nozzles, but anything that sprays clean air like a bellows will blow dirt and dust from your keyboard keys. One thing that works is a condiment bottle.
  5. Empty out all your pens, check them on a piece of scrap paper, and bin every one that doesn’t work. Put the working ones back in a pen holder, and find a new home for anything else.
  6. If you have an overly cluttered desk take everything off of it, sort it though it all, and find desk and non-desk places to put everything. Even having neater piles of things on your desk will make it feel less cluttered.
  7. If you have a craft or art table, arrange it with the ‘in reach’ system. Lay everything out around a clear work space in the middle, with the most used things loose beside it and storage containers in height order.
  8. Take everything that isn’t work related out of the area; you wouldn’t sleep in the bath or cook in the living room, so don’t bring non-work activities into your office.
  9. Sort any physical work things into a classic “In” “Current” and “Out” filing system, so you don’t forget to do things, misplace finished things, or have too many projects on the go at once.
  10. If you use a lot of post it notes and make endless lists, collate them in a to-do notebook or even download an app or programme to type up your notes and lists in.
  11. Keep screen cleaner and a microfiber cloth by your computer screen, and clean it regularly. Use that time to clean your phone, glasses, and other screens too.
  12. Empty out your school bag or work bag every weekend, and repack it. It will mean you always have the things you need, won’t forget important things in your bag for weeks, and stops your bag filling up with unneeded items.



  1. Tape is great for picking up cat hair, saving time and preventing fluffy sofas and clothes.
  2. Sprinkle baby powder on your dogs matted hair to loosen it up so you can brush it out.
  3. Get fur and other fluff out of the carpet by using a squeegee, the thing you dry windows and mirrors with.
  4. Avoid ammonia based cleaning products, as its urine-like smell can stress pets out and cause them to spray and mark their territory.
  5. Dab out ‘accidents’ with equal parts water and white vinegar, then spray a little dishwashing liquid on the area.
  6. Vacuum pet beds before washing, and add baking powder to the washing machine to neutralise the odour
  7. Wash your pets’ collars with some pet shampoo and hot water.
  8. Use a spray-cooking-oil to make it easier to wash bowls out.
  9. Wash your dog sooner rather than later to stop the dirt on them getting all over the house. Use this time to trim their nails if they need it and remember to dry them off properly.
  10. Change any litter areas as soon as they’re pooped in, and keep air freshener nearby to stop smells lingering. Sprinkling baking soda in there reduces smells, too.
  11. Soak collars and toys in a pet shampoo and water mix to give them a deep clean, then rinse them off and leave to dry.
  12. Keep pet supplies near a designated space. Keep the food near the bowls, the litter near the trays and the spare bedding by the cage. This way they won’t get lost or spread unwanted pet mess into other spaces of your house.



  1. First thing first, get yourself in a motivated mood; put on music that makes your feel productive, roll up your sleeves, wear a headband or do anything else that makes you feel like you’re in cleaning mode, and don’t be doing anything else at the same time.
  2. Dust and even mop the floor with socks! Cheap fluffy socks make for great floor cleaners, picking up dust when dry and making a no-bending down mop. You will have to change them after mopping, though.
  3. Put some baking soda in your trainers after you wear them to freshen them up, pouring it out just before putting them on again.
  4. Get your trainers shiny white again by using some toothpaste to clean them.
  5. Take out the trash when you leave the house in the morning. You’re leaving anyway, so it takes an extra chore off the list.
  6. Clean your hairbrushes and combs with liquid dish soap mixed with water.
  7. Acetone-based nail polish remover is perfect for getting glue off of scissor blades and other non-painted things that might get all gummed up.
  8. Keep on top of your housework by setting aside a regular time to tidy. Ten minutes every day, half an hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays, an hour every week; however you sort it out make sure you keep at it to stop mess and dirt building up and overwhelming you.
  9. When you’re throwing things away, remember the William Morris quote, “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
  10. Separating the ‘get rid of’ pile into bin, donate and sell type piles makes it easier to get rid of things. It’s not a case of keep or throw away, it’s a case of keep, donate, sell, or throw away.
  11. Keeping any bags or boxes that you need to take to the dump or charity shop in the way of your routine means you can’t forget about them, and you’ll have to take the time to take them there to stop them annoying you.
  12. Leave any sentimental items aside until last; trying to tidy up your gifts or photo albums is sure to distract you, and you’ll stop and look through, so do it after the other stuff!
  13. Take a step back when you’ve finished and admire the difference you’ve made. Appreciating the fruit of your effort and the way a cleaner tidier home makes your feel more motivated to do it more often.

Roger Deakins Needs to Get an Oscar for Blade Runner 2049 because it’s About Time He Got One

Roger Deakins is a prolific and obviously amazing cinematographer and Director of Photographer. His IMDb page is a long, long list of films that are visually stunning and effective. He’s won 3 BAFTAs and been nominated for 5 more, won a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society of Cinematographers and 4 Best Cinematography awards from the British Society of Cinematographers, and won countless more awards (see them all on his IMDb). He’s been nominated for a whopping twelve Oscars, all for his outstanding cinematography, and not won a single one.

Shawshank Redemption was beaten by Legends of the Fall in 1995, Fargo to The English Patient in 1997, No Country For Old Men to There Will Be Blood in 2008. Okay, so he also lost out to the visually brilliant and still praised Titanic, Inception and Life of Pi, but we’re talking about a career full of masterpieces and no Oscar statuette on his mantelpiece.

The films he was a part of are all a treat for the eye, including the gritty, old feeling True Grit, the bright and somehow simultaneously muted The Big Lebowski, and the above mentioned Shawshank Redemption, who’s visuals cemented the sheer reverence it commands.

His latest offering to our eyes is the worth-it sequel to paradoxically massively popular cult classic Blade Runner. Keeping its predecessor’s rainy neon city scenes, there is a real feeling that this is the same place, many years later. Deakins not only makes the film feel visually matched to the first, which he was not involved with, but brings his own touches. The rainy, high tech city contrasts but compliments the dusty, abandoned opulence in the desert.

Now, the Oscars are all decided individually; not only are the nominees’ awards histories not supposed to be a factor in the award decisions, but the other award categories are not supposed to be a factor. Whilst a cinematography Oscar is going to depend purely on comparing this film to whatever other ones are nominated, public opinion does take everything into account. Remember when Leonardo DiCaprio finally won an Oscar?

Of course, Directors of Photography are not as visible to the average moviegoer. You see the actors’ faces in each film. The Director is the big name in the credits, too. The DoP, however, might be making the huge visual decisions but isn’t a role that non-filmmakers are as aware of. It’s easy to think through all the films you’ve seen Harrison Ford’s face in, and directors with multiple hit films under their belts are well known as mini-genres; Tarantino, Spielberg, the Wachowskis… But, if it isn’t the kind of thing you’re specifically interested in, you probably can’t name another director of photography.

Remember, a quick run-through of Deakin’s resume includes Barton Fink, The Secret Garden, The Shawshank Redemption, Fargo, The Big Lebowski, O Brother Where Art Thou, A Beautiful Mind, The Ladykillers, The Village, Jarhead, No Country For Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford, True Grit, Rango, Skyfall, Sicario and Hail Caesar!. There are seventy-seven films under his cinematography section on IMDb. And he hasn’t won a single Oscar.

With its October release, Blade Runner 2049 has missed the 2017 Oscars, so there’s a wait for the next nominations. Hopefully, it won’t be too far off to include it. Regardless of how many amazing films come out before then, and how many other Oscars it gets nominated for, this film should get cinematography. Deakins ought to have at least one Oscar on his mantelpiece

…And a Bunch of Things You Can Do Instead

[The follow up to this article, Everything Wrong With Gender Reveal Parties…]

1. Throw a birth announcement party

Instead of revealing the baby’s supposed gender, just reveal the baby. Throw a big party announcing the due date, or the day your caesarean is scheduled, or when you hit the nine months mark and are still waiting for the baby to decide it wants to be born.

Have cake and balloons, and tell people what names you’re thinking of – hell, you can even announce the expected sex at the party as long as it’s not the main focus of the party. You can theme the party around birth instead of gender, with tiny food or stork related decorations.

2. Have a christening/naming ceremony/other cultural or religious ceremony

Christian tradition has the Christening or baptism soon after the baby is born, ensuring that the taint of ‘original sin’ is blessed off of the baby’s soul and that the Church family is committed to help raise the baby properly. Some cultures have baby naming ceremonies, where people witness the baby being officially named. If your religion or culture has a ceremony like this, consider looking into it.

If you aren’t that involved in your religion or culture, this would be a good way to get back involved in it, and to connect with community. Instead of starting your baby’s life off with some damaging gender role enforcement, you can start them off by introducing them to their heritage.

3. Throw a name reveal

You want to reveal something, so reveal the name! Have a shortlist of names and get your guests to guess what name you’ve chosen. Give each name a colour and you can even do the balloon or cake reveal with the colour of the chosen name! The bonus is, you can even use whichever colour balloons you like. If the name is along a theme like flowers; Rose, Lily, or Daisy; or the Gospels; Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John; you can base the party on that theme.

The name is the most important thing about your baby, after all, and the main thing you have control over. Making the hype about the baby’s name rather than its genitals also makes the hype about your choice, and about the person you want to mould your child into.

4. Have a baby shower

More common in the US than the UK is the baby shower – a pre-birth party getting the parents baby-related presents. It’s good to be prepared, so throwing a baby shower is a great alternative to a gender reveal party, and as it’s a present ‘shower’ the focus is on buying you grocery priced gifts like nappies and childproof locks rather than expensive gifts and rather on you throwing a big fancy party.

And, if your plan would have been to have a baby shower as well as a gender reveal party, turn the baby shower into the big party; hopefully as you host a more scaled up party your guests might scale up their helpful presents from a pack of nappies to a changing bag, a changing matt or even just a multipack of nappies.

5. Throw mum a party

Mum, or whoever is actually the pregnant one, is the one doing all the physical work. While all of these baby parties focus on the baby and whatever fact about it you’ve chosen to celebrate, it might be worth throwing her (or him/them/etc) a party instead.

Throwing a party for the one that’s pregnant is just as supportive as the baby shower parties, in that there are gifts and things. The difference is that, especially as pregnancy is hard work and is followed by having a baby which is hard work, the presents are not about childcare. Instead of asking for nappies and talking about birth weight, the gift list is bath bombs and things, and the theme is giving mum a relaxing time.

6. Have a zeroth birthday party

Throw a birthday party for baby! Just like birthday parties don’t have to be on the exact day of a child’s birthday, this can be on a Saturday before the due date, or a Sunday after the birth. Instead of having a reveal of balloons or a surprise colour cake or anything like that, have birthday events. The day your baby is born is their birthday after all!

Like any birthday party, it can be as big or as small as you like, and at its most basic just involves a cake and some party hats. At zero years old, your baby doesn’t even have any friends to invite, so just have your friends and family like any other party, except they bring their children.

7. Throw a fake gender reveal party

The activist’s choice! If you’re feeling pressured to throw a gender reveal party and you really don’t want to, use it as an opportunity to make a point or a joke. The big reveal can be purple or white, the big announcement can be “The sex is… not something we’ve chosen to find out yet!” or you could even have a surprise lesson on the problems with enforced gender.

This is a bit of a risk – if guests are too invested in your reveal, they could be offended or upset that you’re ‘attacking’ their gender role beliefs and the party could get awkward. On the other hand, if the people in your life are against gender reveals and the gendering of babies, you might upset people before you even get to reveal your joke. It’s something that would be fantastic to see had happened, though.

8. Have a meet-the-baby day

Like an open house, take a relaxed weekend day to let people come and go, meeting the new baby. This casual all-day way of having a party means less stress and more party. You can just have some light snacks and drinks, people won’t all be there at once, and the atmosphere will be laid back.

It takes the focus of revealing anything about the baby and feels very mature and calm. There’s no need for a big cake, but you can have cake. It’s low key – there’s no pressure to do any particular thing. You sit around and people come to you, all nice and slowly, lasting all day.

9. Throw a “Wetting the Baby’s Head” party

A British tradition, this one doesn’t even really involve the baby. Typically an activity for the dad, it involves going out for a drink to celebrate a successful birth. In this day and age, however, it can be for both parents. After all, everything is going to be about the baby for a good few months, so one night out is probably a welcome break.

Leave the baby at home with a relative and have a nice drink at the pub; it doesn’t have to be alcoholic for those breast feeding or just wanting to avoid a hangover when they have a crying baby. For many people having kids, the social pressure to do certain things isn’t just damaging the child, it’s damaging them. Take a break and have a night out, you’re having a baby and you deserve it.

Everything Wrong With Gender Reveal Parties…

1. You don’t know if your baby is a boy or a girl

Yes, yes, yes, you’re sick of trans people and ‘woke’ cis people pointing out that gender isn’t the same as birth-assigned sex. But it isn’t! What you’re revealing isn’t whether your baby is a boy or a girl, but what genitals your baby has and the category they will be put in because of it. As adults, male and female look different, but before puberty, the only difference between ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ is the shape of their genitals. And that’s a creepy reason to throw a party.

Your child could grow up to be transgender, and the more importance you place on determining gender from genitals the more trouble you’re going to have with that.

2. Assumed gender is not the main fact about your baby

People always ask if your baby is a boy or a girl as if that’s the only thing that matters about a baby. The health of the baby, the health of the mum, weight, appearance, what you’re going to name them, whether they have any birthmarks etc; these are also facts about a baby you could be asking or announcing.

To be quite honest? You had a baby, and a new person now exists. That’s the main fact here, not what supposed gender they are. There is the amazing feat of birth, the fact that everyone has yet to meet this baby and while be excited they were born, and the sheer fact that they’re a human being not a one in two option. But yet, the gender is the big reveal.

3. It revolves around silly gender stereotypes

These parties are never just the announcement and then unrelated partying; the reveal is visual and the party that follows is connected to the gender announced. It’s a baby, and people are very complicated, so how do people and products reveal gender in these parties? Stereotypes. Using the dull pink or blue, or having some stereotypical interests the child might or might not have based on their gender.

None of the adults in your life has personalities based on one or two interests that are shared by everyone that’s the same gender as them. None of the women in your life only wear pink and none of the men only blue. Why is the baby being shoved into one or two gendered traits or revealed as pink-themed or blue-themed?

4. Enforcing gender roles is damaging to all children

It isn’t just transgender people who are damaged by enforcing gender on them; gender roles limit all children and cause them to limit themselves. It isn’t just saying that girls do A and boys do B, which pressures girls into A and boys into B, it pressures boys away from A and girls away from B. There is a serious lack of women in STEM careers, and it stems from gender stereotyping. If sports are for boys, girls feel like they can’t do it before they even try, and the idea that it’s for boys is ‘proven’ by the lack of girls who like sport. Likewise, if boys who don’t like sport are made to feel less than and pushed into taking part, and the idea that it’s for boys is ‘proven’ by all the boys who play sports.

It might not seem like a big deal, but putting one gender role on a child is just shutting off the other options from them. These gender reveal parties tend to have really narrow roles for boys and girls, and separating children into two groups and assigning things to one or the other is damaging for any child.

5. The gender roles for baby girls are misogynistic

All the pink… but it’s not just pink, it’s the activities and interests that people use to represent ‘girl’ in gender reveals. It’s always almost an aesthetic thing; a feminine item of clothing that is decorative, an accessory, something to make you look more attractive. To the gender reveal, a girl is a pretty thing, and a pretty thing only.

This narrow view is basically the dictionary definition of misogyny – women are capable, skilled and valuable as more than aesthetically pleasing objects. Women should be allowed to be unattractive.

6. The gender roles for baby boys are toxic

The pastel blue is the last soft thing in the gender stereotypes for boys that aren’t scarily violent. While girls are represented by aesthetic things, boys are represented by weapons or war. Guns, camo, army clothing… boys are trained to be aggressive from birth, and this is a huge part of a problem called “toxic masculinity” where men feel unable to express any emotion other than anger.

This not only makes them push joy, sadness, and worry inside them to eat them up, it causes them to define their interactions with other people via violence. Men should be able to have and express feelings, and this starts by not categorising boys as bullets.

7. It’s just one more pointless thing you feel pressured to spend money on

It’s a well-known fact that having a baby is an expensive decision. Eighteen years plus of expenses, with some very pricey necessities right when they’re born. Preparing your home, cots, clothes, nappies, pushchairs, food, medical bills, pregnancy clothing, the list goes on and on. Not to miss an opportunity, however, society has decreed you must have multiple parties and events where people have to buy you presents and you have to pay to host a good party. Pregnancy announcements with professional photoshoots, baby showers with pre-birth gifts, and gender reveals with huge reveal displays… and all before the baby is born.

The announcement needs to be in the form of a visual display, with a professionally made cake that’s pink or blue inside, a fancy box filled with helium balloons or a jack-in-the-box style confetti popper. These things are priced to match the supposed ‘need’ and replace a simple spoken announcement – the party itself replaces a card or even text to family and friends.

8. It only works if you pretend intersex isn’t a thing

Of course, these sex reveals rely on the belief that your newborn baby will one hundred percent have easily identifiable genitals and their hormones will develop in the expected way, with expected reproductive organs etc. It’s estimated that one in a hundred children are born intersex, and many of those will have “ambiguous genitals”. Even if the ultrasound technician can see genitals that they can categorise, this doesn’t rule out intersex conditions.

Intersex children may have ‘normal’ genitals of one sex category but the full appearance otherwise of the other sex category. One in a hundred may seem like a small chance, but when nearly 700,000 babies born each year in the UK, that’s nearly 7,000 intersex babies every year, or an average of 19 a day. Intersex people are real and cannot be ignored for your comfort.

9. It adds to the culture of ‘corrective’ genital surgery

Not only do intersex babies get born despite the insistence that all babies are either 100% male or 100% female, they are a much-mistreated group. For the babies that are born with ambiguous genitals, a sad truth is the idea that it’s abnormal means unnecessary surgery is done to ‘fix’ them. These babies often grow up with no idea they are intersex until puberty because they have been made to appear non-intersex and obviously this aesthetic surgery doesn’t magically make them non-intersex and their hormones and reproductive systems are still those of an intersex person.

In an era where religious people are criticised for circumcising their babies, and there is much debate on whether non-life-threatening medical issues should be dealt with via surgery when surgery on babies is so risky… The idea that performing such severe surgery on children to pretend they aren’t intersex is horrifying, and it all stems from this need to announce children as ‘boys’ or ‘girls’ before they’re even born.

[Follow up article: …And a Bunch of Things You Can Do Instead]

The Anatomy of a Cat

For vet trips and other medical situations, obviously the medical terminology for your cat’s body parts are the best words to use. But this is the internet and we’re all cat ladies, our actual genders irrelevant. Cats are ridiculously adorable floofs and we have a need for these far more appropriate terms for their body parts.


Scritch Place: the space behind a cat’s ears, which is the best place to scritch your cat.

Ear Floof: all of the lovely long hairs inside your cats ears, presumably to make them extra cute.

Mane: the longer fur around your cats cheeks, just like a lion’s mane.

Boop: the soft, skin-coloured part of your cat’s nose, which is a perfect little button to press and say “boop”.

Blep: any part of your cat’s tongue that is currently sticking out of their mouth, especially if their mouth is closed.

Toofs: the super-cute little fangs that your cat shows you when they yawn.

Toe Beans: your cat’s toe pads, looking like little cattwojelly beans.

Peets: the cute little feet of your cat, made of soft pads for their sole and toe beans.

Sassy Pants: the extra fluffy floof that is your cat’s thighs, and looks like a pair of pantaloons.

Belly: the whole underside of your cat, all soft fluffiness and highly tempting to rub vigorously.

Nope: any part of your cat’s underside that they attack you for petting, named for your cat’s attitude to you touching it.

Bingo Wings: just like the sassy pants, the fluffy thigh/upper arm part of your cat’s front legs, like the loose skin older people often get but much cuter.

Bib: most easily identified on tuxedo cats, who have white fur there, the part of your cats chest that’s still visible when they sit up tall.