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Paper Monitor

09:46 UK time, Tuesday, 24 April 2007

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Is it wrong to buy newspapers solely on the basis of what they're giving away with it? Paper Monitor's mind is usually on higher things than mere gewgaws so early in the morning. But it's almost impossible to ignore the current wave of giveaways.

The Daily Telegraph, for instance, is on a Dr Seuss (correct pronunciation here) kick, offering books, CDs, stickers and heaven knows what else. (Signal to readers: You're the kind of folk with children or, more probably, grandchildren and you want to give them generally improving but not stuffy literature. Subtext to those readers: The Daily Telegraph is generally improving but not stuffy.)

The Guardian is offering nicely-produced pamphlets of great speeches from history, with the paper's reports which were originally published at the time of the speech. (Signal to readers: You're the kind of discerning reader with a healthy appetite for pure politics, good on you. Subtext to readers: The Guardian is the "authorised version" of history as it happens.)

mailfilms.jpgThe Daily Star is offering free driving lessons. (Signal to readers: Boys, this way. Subtext to readers: This is like Nuts, only every day.)

The Daily Mirror is offering a free Frank Sinatra CD. Plus 10% off clothes at Asda. (Signal to readers: Roll up, roll up. Subtext to readers: Basically we'll do anything.)

Yet it's our old chums the Daily Mail which have really caught the eye. Paper Monitor will be the first to admit that an encyclopedic knowledge of films is not a virtue possessed (that's what IMDB is for). But the paper is near the end of a 14-day-long DVD giveaway, and still there hasn't been a film that Paper Monitor has actually heard of, let alone seen.

The criteria for selection appears to be a film which has the kind of name films usually have (eg Reversible Errors, today's disc), but definitely featuring a star/author/direction who you have heard of, allowing some degree of promotion (eg Frederick Forsyth's Icon, The Glory Boys with Rod Steiger, Sam Peckinpah's The Osterman Weekend).

The exception to this was last Wednesday when the paper offered a free DVD of Goldeneye. But it was starring Charles Dance rather than the more conventional option of Pierce Brosnan. Further inquiries made clear that this of course wasn't the world famous film GoldenEye (NB: written with a capital E) in which Bond meets Xenia Onatopp and Sean Bean. No, it was Goldeneye, with no middle capital, which IMDB lists as a "fact-based biography of James Bond author, Ian Fleming".

All these films may well be excellent viewing experiences. In fact as a special feature, anyone who has seen any of the above-mentioned films is hereby invited to add a comment below to fill the rest of us in. But as to what signal the Mail's promotion is sending to its own readers, Paper Monitor has no idea.


  1. At 11:24 AM on 24 Apr 2007, C Falconer wrote:

    Re "Goldeneye" - I suspect the lure here is Charles Dance - thinking-woman-of-a-certain-age's crumpet
    (or so I am lead to believe)

  2. At 12:33 PM on 24 Apr 2007, Adrian Jones wrote:

    I wish I'd spotted Goldeneye in the Mail. I've never seen it but did see some of the filming, around the corner of the student accommodation I was in at the time.

    Apparently they wanted somewhere that looked like a bomb had just hit it. Whitechapel was an ideal choice then.

  3. At 02:07 PM on 24 Apr 2007, Robert Phillips wrote:

    Regarding: Daily Mail's Goldeneye trap.
    I once flicked over to watch "The Running Man" ( one evening. I waited half an hour for some film from the 1960's to finish only to find it was actually "The Running Man" ( It was a pretty good film, but I felt cheated.

  4. At 04:33 PM on 24 Apr 2007, Candace wrote:

    The Glory Boys has Anthony Perkins in it so may be worth a look. He was not himself that day.

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