When eyewitnesses were asked to describe 9/11, 7/7 or the tsunami that flooded parts of Japan, many shook their heads and said, ‘It was like a film.’
The disaster scenarios of so many Hollywood flicks (and Japanese ones too!) have so infected our minds that insane events now look less like reality and more like frames of celluloid.
Russell Square is not the scene of a disaster film. It is a place of tranquility, a moment of the day when I can truly say I feel peace. But imagine this. As I walk from one side to the other, I am a camera tracking on a dolly through the trees, surreptitiously grabbing snippets of action in the distance. Who are those people walking their schnauzer in the undergrowth? What conversations go between those high-collared power couples on the cafe terrace? Is that fountain just a cover for a vast underground network of aliens ready to usurp humans as the rulers of our planet?
Sometimes, it’s simply down to the way the light filters through the trees. I think, if I was a cinematographer I would be creaming myself right now. Film infects every part of our lives. It influences our conversations. It makes drama of nothing.
Oh, and here’s a tasty modernist morsel found opposite Russell Square. I couldn’t resist…