fri 30/09/2016

England

The Girl with All the Gifts

Not having read Mike Carey's source novel, I enjoyed the luxury of settling down with my bag of Warner Bros promotional popcorn having no idea where this story was headed. And for the first third of the movie, this was a real bonus.Who were these...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Psychomania

Fusing genres to come up with unique takes on familiar tropes can be risky. The unwieldy results may be an unappetising mess. Mother Riley Meets the Vampire, where Arthur Lucan and Bela Lugosi fought for space in an unfunny 1952 fusion of comedy and...

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The Entertainer, Garrick Theatre

For the final show in his year-long stay at this West End address, Kenneth Branagh has chosen to revive and star in John Osborne’s 1957 play. By doing so, he finds himself once again treading in the footsteps of Sir Laurence Olivier, who originally...

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DVD/Blu-ray: A Kind of Loving

In John Schlesinger’s A Kind of Loving (1962), draughtsman Vic (Alan Bates), still reeling from a drunken binge and a fight with his typist wife Ingrid (June Ritchie) and her mother (Thora Hird), staggers into the railway station of their grim...

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Swallows and Amazons

If one was going to write the recipe for a classic British children’s film, it would probably include the following: adapt much-loved novel; hire fresh-faced young actors and well-worn comedians; budget for steam trains chugging over viaducts;...

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The Impossible Gentlemen, Pizza Express Jazz Club

"Jazz,” said Keith Jarrett once, “is there and gone. It happens. You have to be present for it. That simple." For an audience, it produces a never-to-be repeated event: yes, you were there, and you didn’t miss it. One of the pleasures of seeing a...

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Half A Sixpence, Chichester Festival Theatre

Watching Cameron Mackintosh’s joyful revision of this Sixties musical, it’s possible to believe for a moment that all the world needs now is love sweet love and a shit-ton of banjos. With a new book by Downton Abbey behemoth Julian Fellowes, new...

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The Kingdom, Three Choirs Festival, Gloucester

The last time but one that the Three Choirs Festival was in Gloucester the main offering was Elgar’s oratorio The Kingdom, and there’s a kind of inevitability about the same work turning up again, same place, same occasion, six years later. After...

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CD: Bosco Rogers - Post Exotic

Anyone looking for some psychedelic pop to at least give the illusion that we might now actually be in the middle of summer could do much worse than try out the debut album by Anglo-French duo Bosco Rogers. Their 21st century twist on the Monkees’...

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The Legend of Tarzan

Accustomed as we now are to superheroes who can change size and shape, fly at nuclear speeds, levitate ships and vibrate themselves through walls, a bloke wearing pedal-pushers and jumping out of trees might be considered a bit of an under-achiever...

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Adult Life Skills

There are often times as adults, that we feel ill-prepared for dealing with situations that arise. There is no equivalent of a Brownie’s badge for “taking responsibility” “progressing the career ladder”, “finding your life partner” or “coping with...

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Hobson's Choice, Vaudeville Theatre

Harold Brighouse's time-honoured English comedy from a century ago survives, its virtues mostly intact especially once attention shifts away from the snarling patriarch of the title, Henry Horatio Hobson (a padded Martin Shaw), to the generation of...

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