wed 28/01/2015

Reviews

Inherent Vice

Nick Hasted

Thomas Pynchon and PT Anderson: too good to be true? News that the director of There Will Be Blood and The Master was adapting America’s greatest and most hiply profound living novelist certainly sounded like a heavenly equation. Better yet, Anderson had chosen Pynchon’s most consistently funny and approachable novel, Inherent Vice, in which the author had effectively passed around a convivial and especially mind-blowing joint to his fans, as a reward for braving the heaving banquet of his...

Dara, National Theatre

Aleks Sierz

The history play has roots that go deep into our culture. We love to see stories that are kitted out in fancy dress, and long to savour a past that resonates with our present. In the case of Dara, which is adapted by Tanya Ronder from an original by Shahid Nadeem first performed five years ago by Ajoka Theatre in Pakistan, we time-travel back to Mughal India in the mid-17th century to confront once again the problem of militant Islam. But is there more here than contemporary issues clothed in...

Touched by Auschwitz, BBC Two

Tom Birchenough

There’s been a pronounced sense of finality at this year’s 70th anniversary commemoration of the 1945 liberation of Auschwitz. No closure, of course...

Hello/Goodbye, Hampstead Theatre

Marianka Swain

If the London property boom continues post-election, the fight for living space may well develop into all-out war. But what begins as skirmish in...

Richard Alston Dance Company 20th Anniversary...

Hanna Weibye

Testament to the work of Richard Alston Dance Company (RADC) over the 20 years since its foundation was not just the première-filled celebratory...

Taken at Midnight, Theatre Royal Haymarket

Heather Neill

Penelope Wilton triumphs as a mother who defies the Nazis in fighting for her lawyer son

Ghostpoet, Village Underground

Katie Colombus

New album sees this rap artist moving forward both lyrically and with his crossover sound

Big Hero 6

Emma Simmonds

Charming Disney animation gives way to superhero spectacle

Blind Date, Jermyn Street Theatre

Marianka Swain

Chirpy romcom offers big-hearted courtship, but lacks contemporary bite

Mr Selfridge, Series 3, ITV

Adam Sweeting

Despite the ravages of the Great War, the retailing saga bounces back looking fighting fit

Julian Cope, Glee Club, Birmingham

Guy Oddy

An intimate evening with the Arch Drude and cheerleader for 'the psychedelicised'

Jan Garbarek Group, Stormen, Bodø

Kieron Tyler

The saxophone titan's many sides revealed as he opens north Norway’s Bodø Jazz Open festival

Rubens and His Legacy, Royal Academy

Florence Hallett

Study of the Old Master's reputation visits a neglected corner of artistic practice

Holocaust: Night Will Fall, Channel 4

Tom Birchenough

Memories of the Holocaust, and Alfred Hitchcock's attempts to sum up its visual testimony

Reissue CDs Weekly: Tyrannosaurus Rex

Kieron Tyler

Marc Bolan’s confident advance to superstardom is tracked over his first three albums

Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, October Gallery

Tim Cumming

From Throbbing Gristle to pandrogyny: Genesis Breyer P-Orridge reflects

Beyond Clueless

Ellin Stein

Charlie Lyne's enjoyable documentary celebrates the teen movie but lacks rigour

Classical CDs Weekly: Henry Mancini, Georg Breinschmid, Beethoven

Graham Rickson

A giant among film composers, virtuoso bass playing and rousing romantic overtures

PJ Harvey: Recording in Progress, Artangel at Somerset House

Mark Kidel

The musician in full creative swing: a voyeur’s delight

Ex Machina

Nick Hasted

Human nature is tested to destruction in Alex Garland's Artificial Intelligence thriller

Bear Winter

Stuart Houghton

If you go down to the woods today... tomorrow... and the day after

Surviving the Holocaust - Freddie Knoller's War, BBC Two

Tom Birchenough

Testament of character and endurance told with disarming modesty

Cucumber, Channel 4

Matthew Wright

Russell T Davies' new series turns observational comedy into melodrama

Leiferkus, LPO, Jurowski, RFH

Matthew Wright

Jurowski’s high-concept operatic pairing flickers brilliantly

James Dillon's Stabat Mater, London Sinfonietta, Volkov, QEH

Gavin Dixon

Grand scale, fresh approach to a familiar Latin hymn

Andrea Chénier, Royal Opera

Alexandra Coghlan

An exceptional cast make this revolutionary romance a must-see

A Most Violent Year

Matt Wolf

Period crime drama packs a quietly potent punch

The Changeling, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

David Nice

Ill met by candlelight: Hattie Morahan shines in nasty Jacobean tragicomedy

Latvian Radio Choir, Kļava, St John's Smith Square

Gavin Dixon

Not enough choir, too much choreographed perfection for a true John Cage happening

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