Ben Wheatley's Train Delay Playlist

Posted by
Ralph Jones

We rang up the High Rise and Free Fire director to find out what he’d distract himself with if his train was stuck at the platform, refusing to bloody move!


“It’s called, rather rudely, krautrock. It’s basically motoric beats; it sounds like driving music. Certainly the Neu! albums were the groundwork for new wave in the UK, and are essentially the blueprint for a lot of modern music here, including electronica.”

TV SHOW: Halt and Catch Fire

“It’s quite geeky; it follows characters who are close to the development of computing from the late Seventies through to the dawn of the internet – which doesn’t sound too thrilling, but it’s beautifully written. There’s not a car chase or a shoot-out or a murder, and yet it’s incredibly dramatic about the development of portable computers and networking.” 

FILM: Escape from New York

“Being a director is about soaking up culture from every area and then wringing it out, hopefully, into a new piece of work. I’ve been getting back into sci-fi. I’m a massive John Carpenter fan. When Escape From New York came out in the Eighties it was a high-concept sci-fi movie, but now I think it could just about come true. America is in chaos and Manhattan has been turned into a high-security prison. The president’s plane crashes on the island and they have to send in Kurt Russell, playing a character called Snake Plissken, to go in and save him. It’s high-end stuff.”

WEBSITE: Dangerous Minds

“It’s a cornucopia of links. It’s quite old-school now. It’s probably run by people my age. They are brilliant at digging around in culture and finding weird nuggets.”

BOOK: Scala Club Cinema

“Scala was my favourite cinema as a kid and it closed in the Nineties after they got sued for showing A Clockwork Orange. This book, about the history of Scala, has every programme that it ran from the Seventies to the Nineties. It filled me with a) geeky glee, and b) waves of nostalgia.” 

PODCAST: Soundtracking

“Edith Bowman talks music with musicians and/or filmmakers. I was on the first episode.” 

Happy New Year, Colin Burstead will be on BBC Two over Christmas and on iPlayer for a year.

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(Image: Getty)


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Ralph Jones

Ralph Jones is a staff writer for ShortList magazine. In April 2015 he won a seven-foot throne of dildos but he’d rather you didn’t mention it. He performs sketch comedy and is on Twitter at @OhHiRalphJones

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