You Won’t Believe This!

There’s a storm brewing on the eve of December. A new disaster is here, a new doom and gloom is coming soon!

It’s the end of the world. It’s always a bad day.


Don’t roll around in hey, whilst making pay.

Earning sleep to make your, way.

Enjoy yourself.

Good stuff.

Excellent picture of land.

At the hand, of myself.

As we slowly move toward a bleak and hopeless existence which focuses on nothing but fantasy and degrading life styles, what will you become?

20 Year Anniversary of Movies!

In 2001, the world was graced with some of the most unforgettable movies of all time. I remember the year well. Multiple world wide catastrophes were abound, unfortunately including the incident in New York. But movies can help you forget the pain and misery of life…

2021 is the 20 year anniversary of some real gems in movie and film. I believe the wizard has a great list for you! I hope you enjoy getting nostalgic. So much has happened in 20 years. I remember those days like they were yesterday, fading away, time to move on.

  1. Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone
  2. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
  3. Shrek
  4. Monsters Inc
  5. The Royal Tenenbaums
  6. The Fast and the Furious
  7. Bridget Jones Diary
  8. Planet of the Apes
  9. Tomb Raider
  10. Artificial Intelligence
  11. Spy Kids!
  12. Rat Race
  13. Zoolander
  14. Jurassic Park III
  15. Atlantis: The Lost Empire

Some real great movies here. Of course I included kids films. Harry Potter is at the top because I was so excited to see this and when I did it blew me away. It is also a rather long film for kid at 2 hours 40 mins I believe! Also hard to believe the first Fast and Furious movie was out. Who would have thought back then, that it would be the biggest, most profitable movie franchise in movie history competing only with the superhero craze of Marvel and DC comics.

I’m aware that more movies existed at the time, but I can’t list them all you know! On a side note, Spy Kids was pretty groundbreaking and fun, one of the more enjoyable movies for children. Rat Race got a mention because it’s the sort of movie you could watch anytime and many times. I don’t think any of the films are boring. Again, talking about the success of the franchises, Planet of the Apes went on to develop into a trilogy a few years later concluding in 2017 with War of the Planet of the Apes.

Keep your eyes on my feed, as I’ll be posting more Christmas movies recommendations again soon! I also have to confess that the wizard is struggling with sleep currently. Peace.

This is hilarious! Dying inside!

All of you lovely people need to hear this short story. Today, as part of civil advocacy, where I had to make an application to the court to set aside default judgment, I was nervous, stood up and managed something that could be understood. I was surprised how nervous I was, and simultaneously how well I did, I didn’t do great, but the tutors feedback indicated that I did well for a first time.

I got the law correct. The let down was not being confident enough, and not standing tall. I will do better. But for a first attempt, I say again I did better than expected. I had 8 minutes for my submissions to the judge (ma’am) and 2 minutes for a reply.

Next time we are tasked with application for summary judgment. To be honest, civil litigation has been rather fun. Throw in some drafting of defence and counterclaim and we have potential for cash income.

“Were you having trouble keeping eye contact?”

“It’s hard to keep eye contact when you’re nervous.”

The lectern from which I spoke was about a foot from the tutor… haha I find this hilarious. On a final positive note, I did better than expected. I have to remain positive.

Oliver! – British Classics

Released in 1968, set in 1830s London and one of the most loved British musicals ever to grace the screens, this gem is always going to have a special place in cinematography.

Amongst one of the longer movies of the 20th Century, musical movies that is, and among the most popular, comes a tale of a young so called orphan, Oliver! Dragged from the workhouse for boys to the coffin filled rooms of the not so nice mortician, Oliver soon finds an escape after a dark start to the film, and makes his way to the big city, London!

One of the highlights of this movie is the set design. I really enjoy that because every set, dress costume and just aesthetic feel like the 1800’s, if I knew what it was like to be alive then. I praise the movies historical accuracy, especially one of the core themes, the difference between the rich and the poor. Oliver is soon embarking into the life of crime with Artful Dodger (Jack Wild) and Fagin (Ron Moody), skillfully directed by Carol Reed. Of course, what crime life isn’t complete without a bad guy, true bad man Bill Sikes (Oliver Reed) is one of modern films more harrowing villains.

All of this is accumulating rather quickly, Oliver is learning the ropes of pick pocketing. Only when a first job goes wrong, and he is being chased by police… soon in Magistrates… soon in the home of the very gentlemen he was accused of robbing. All of this is turning the tables, we expect this poor boy, an orphan will not fit in. In fact this act of kindness really helped us to empathize with Oliver more. He’s come a long way, and the trouble is still brewing. Bill Sikes don’t like the sound of Oliver living among the rich, especially since the risk of being grassed on is so high.

But we know that Oliver is good, enjoying his new life. A lot of song and dance really cast hope for him. Only later will we know that the rich gentlemens niece, by the miraculous miracle of movie magic, is Oliver’s mother. So it is claimed, the truth is that this is never proven. But hope can and will. You get into the film, really into each scene and I don’t like it when I know it will end, but it must.

Oliver has his final showdown with Bill Sikes. Fagin and the boys are just business criminals and nothing more or less, they never cared for Oliver. Of course, it takes the sacrifice of Sikes girlfriend Nancy to save Oliver from the clutches of the evil. But she does not succeed, instead meeting her demise at his hands. Such metaphorical and allegorical plays here, a movie within a movie. The good and evil battle rages on.

It’s a classic and it’s worth watching. A journey of struggle and reward. Much to be liked and much to be remembered. Did I mention set design? Choreography? Acting? Brilliant.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

5 stars, because it’s hard to find a movie like this anymore.

Criminal Conference

I have just completed my mock conference assessment today. I was nervous about how this would go, and what I would score. I had done my preparation but there is a significant element of flexibility required. The criminal conference is one form of assessment and something that is required to pass the course. It involves talking to your client before a court appearance for example.

In the type of conference I had today, a plea before venue and allocation hearing was scheduled to take place immediately after the meeting with my client. This means I need to establish the facts of the case, to confirm whether my client has satisfied the elements of the offences, whether they have a defence, how they would like to plead (after advising them on the strengths and weaknesses of their case) and choosing a court if pleading not guilty, and if they have a choice.

It sounds simple, but the mock assessment was 20 minutes. The real assessment will also be 20 minutes. This is not a lot of time. I did manage to get through all my points in time, but, I still missed things and could have done better. I can always do better. The conference was also recorded, which is great and conducive to learning.

At the core of a conference is the barrister client relationship and being able to act in the best interests of each client. This is a barristers core duty, and one which is subject to your duty to the court. Too much legalese? The core duties are not secrets of the state, although, they are probably not known by the majority of British citizens. Rest assured that barristers are independent and regulated by the Bar Standards Board and their chambers to an extent, you won’t find an incompetent barrister for the most part… yes, some barristers are bad, that is not usual.

A criminal case will be heard in the magistrates court initially. This is 99% of criminal cases. Only the most serious of offences will go straight to the crown court. The crown court has more sentencing powers, and as such, the process is strict, can take longer (getting a hearing date could take a while), is more formal with wigs and gowns, a legally educated judge and the most important part that defendants need to know, a jury!

12 lay people, from all walks of life, not legally educated, able to decide whether a defendant is guilty or not guilty. The topic of much debate. Without a jury what will the crown court become? It is the best system that England has in place, and is a lot fairer than other countries. EU countries are not subject to common law like England and Wales. Rather, they are utilising a system of Civil law, derived from Roman law, which codifies the law… get it? The codes cover everything (supposedly) and rather than using previous case law, will instead rely on these codes for the sentence. EU law was rather enjoyable, and learning about the complications of cross border consumer law was brain stunning. I feel relieved that I achieved a decent mark in my undergraduates studies on this module.

Back to the conference. As mentioned a defendant will initially appear before the magistrates court. A bench of 3 non legally educated people, who are usually case hardened having listened to a lot of similar cases, and therefore more likely to find you guilty and sentence you. They are volunteers, yes, you heard me correctly, the 3 people about to decide your fate are volunteers from the public. You do have an automatic right of appeal though, which is a bonus, you don’t have that in crown court. The bench of 3 could instead be replaced on the day of your appearance by a district judge. These sit alone and are legal experts. Why they don’t just use these all the time is beyond me, and probably would help too.

If the client has any previous convictions, my understanding is that this will be of detriment and if it is a similar offence, could result in a much harsher sentence. As for defences, they are available and are limited in how they can be applied. If someone is charged with an assault – common assault at law which involved physical contact – they can use a defence if they committed the offence as the result of acting in self defence. You may know this, but the burden of proof remains with the prosecution to prove that the amount of force used was unreasonable. The defending barrister will have to prove that the client acted in self defence, and if they do this successfully, that is a complete defence.

Other defences are available, and essentially they are either a lack of mens rea – the mental element of the offence, and actus reus – the physical element of the offence. Most disputes in cases will focus on the mental element, as to whether the defendant intended to do something. After intention there is a whole host of other reasons for the crime being committed, such as recklessness, negligence, mistake, duress, etc. The actus or act is much easier to prove than the mental element, but again, this is something I love about English law, that it provides a fair a due process.

‘It is called Magna Charta, not that it is great in quantity … but in respect of the great importance and weightinesse of the matter.’

Edward Coke

Would you take the advise of your barrister to plead guilty or not guilty? Do you know that you don’t have to give a plea? Are you a good person of good character with no previous convictions? Although lengthy quotes from magna carter are not used by barristers in conference, they no less have to engage with the client and establish the details of their case. Without the details, you might be incompetent.

Needless to say the rest, I was told that I was competent, along with the other student. This is good I guess. The opposite would be incompetent, which would be rather embarrassing… Now I need to prepare for the full assessment and try not to mess it up, preparation is key.

Christmas Guide to Movies

I am starting to let myself become excited now about Christmas. When the Manchester Christmas markets started to go up at the beginning of November, I was rather annoyed as the populace seemingly missed Halloween.

I remember the days when we all entered in the lockdown last March. How things have changed since then. People have gone and the world seemingly spins unbothered, but society is a very different place and now peoples lives are dominated by digital engagement….hmm, doesn’t sound right.

I am only recommending a few movies, as the list of actual Christmas movies is extremely long. I am only mentioning big blockbuster movies rather than b movies or anything with production value under one hundred million dollars. I won’t be watching any until the 1st December, that is a solid promise from this English gent. A rich gent. The order also does not dictate that the movie is better than the others.

  1. Home Alone

The most loved Christmas movie of all time… I think. Home Alone 2 recaptures the magic of the first movie and is probably the better film overall! All of them are great films for the family. So no worrying about Krampus!

2. Muppets Christmas Carol

Strange movies. The 2011 Muppets movie was great! A little old though.

3. Krampus

A horror Christmas movie! It is quite enjoyable!

4. Anna and the Apocalypse

If you thought zombie movies couldn’t get any more bizarre then think again. A Christmas musical not for the faint of heart!

5. Bad Santa

Brilliant, number 2 carries on the legacy of this old foolish alcoholic well. A real tribute to the alcohol consumed in the festive season.

6. The Polar Express

Probably my favourite on the list and I haven’t seen for many years. When this movie was released it was all the hype due to the special effects on live animation.

7. A Wonderful Life

Not a completed list without this movie about a man who is shown what life would have been like without him. It’s fantasy in case you wondered, mix in drama.

8. Elf

Not to keen on this although it is one of the most popular movies ever made regardless of the fact it is based around Christmas.

9. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation

I think I have watched this every Christmas. Nothing beats Chevy Chase!

10. Trading Places

Based around Christmas time, this movie has an important message about money. Ultimately life is not about money, but you knew that didn’t you?

11. The Grinch

Great for kids, great for old people, great for me! I really enjoyed the movie as a child but dare not ruin that as an adult. Based on the book!

12. Gremlins

Yes, it’s a Christmas movie, and yes, they eat people.

13. Jingle all the way

Arnold sure looked like he was gonna pop when his cookies were being eaten, and apparently he told someone off camera that he wasn’t acting.


I sit alone on this rock

I wonder how I got here

I continually check the clock

Get me out of here

This cannot be 2021

There is so  much that has gone

Shifting perceptions

Changing norms

I am happy to say

I don't like it... at all

As I sit here today


The night breeze cool on my face

I am still a part of the human race

The scary truth

Is that it is now set

Lest we forget

Our memories

Of the good

Surpass the bad

Perhaps we can be glad

To change

Those raw feelings.