tue 21/11/2017

1950s

Blu-ray: The Incredible Shrinking Man

The Incredible Shrinking Man starts innocently with a young couple bantering on a small boat off the California coast. Before what looks like an atomic mushroom cloud wafts towards the unfortunate Scott Carey, lightly coating him in glittery fallout...

Read more...

Ferrari: Race to Immortality review - death and glory in 1950s motor racing

And so the mini-boom in motor racing movies continues, this time with a look back at the history of Ferrari and the intense on-track battles of the 1950s, a decade in which the Scuderia won four of its 15 Formula One World Drivers Championships. In...

Read more...

DVD/Blu-ray: The Wages of Fear

The opening shot sets the tone for what follows: a pair of duelling cockroaches attached to a string, tormented by a bored child. In 1953’s The Wages of Fear, we quickly sense that Henri-Georges Clouzot’s characters are similarly powerless. His...

Read more...

Insignificance, Arcola Theatre review - once-iconic play feels overwrought

Terry Johnson's award-winning 1982 play Insignificance hasn't been seen in London since the playwright directed a 1995 revival at the Donmar (though Sam West staged his own production a decade later in Sheffield). But even the intrigue inherent in...

Read more...

Breathe review - heroic but airbrushed struggle against disability

It’s a challenge to review this film without resorting to adjectives like “plucky” and “well-meaning”, and its mainstream comfiness made it a strangely cautious choice for the opening night of the recent London Film Festival. Breathe is not only...

Read more...

The Death of Stalin review - dictatorship as high farce

Like Steptoe and Son with ideological denouncements, Stalin’s Politburo have known each other too long. They’re not only trapped but terrified, a situation whose dark comedy is brought to a head by Uncle Joe’s sudden, soon fatal stroke in 1953. The...

Read more...

The Lady from the Sea, Donmar Warehouse review - Nikki Amuka-Bird luminous in a sympathetic ensemble

What a profoundly beautiful play is Ibsen's The Lady from the Sea. It stands in relation to the earlier, relatively confined A Doll’s House, Ghosts and Rosmersholm as Shakespeare's late romances do to the more claustrophobic tragedies. And with what...

Read more...

Osud/Trouble in Tahiti, Opera North - swings and roundabouts in a surprising double-bill

It was a topsy-turvy evening. Sometimes the things you expect to turn out best disappoint, while in this case the relatively small beer yielded a true "Little Great" of a production and the best singing in Opera North's latest double bill (subject...

Read more...

Sparks, O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire review - age does not wither them

It’s more than 40 years since Sparks appeared on Top of the Pops with “This Town Ain’t Big Enough for Both of Us”, one of a handful of hits from the brothers Mael, Ron and Russell, who grew up in 1950s and ‘60s LA detesting the “cerebral and sedate...

Read more...

Trouble in Mind, The Print Room review - Tanya Moodie is a treat to watch

Truth is pursued in different ways in Alice Childress’s groundbreaking 1955 Trouble in Mind, and its play-within-a-play story of rehearsals for a Broadway show fully mines the range of theatrical opportunities, for much comic as well as rather more...

Read more...

DVD/Blu-ray: Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Oh dear. I thought that this was going to be one of those exciting fantasy films that livened up TV on weekend afternoons in my childhood, and that there would be kitschy special effects and ludicrous dialogue. But no, it's not 20,00 Leagues under...

Read more...

Neil Sedaka, Royal Albert Hall review - sparkly veteran defies the decades

As pretty much everything but a plague of locusts is visited upon this grim old world, an evening in the company of Neil Sedaka is the greatest of pick-me-ups. At the Royal Albert Hall on Monday, as his UK tour drew to a close, the capacity audience...

Read more...
Subscribe to 1950s