fri 23/06/2017

literature

Neruda, review - 'poetry and politics'

Chilean director Pablo Larrain has described Neruda as a “false biopic”, and it’s a film that surprises on many levels in its presentation of Pablo Neruda, the great poet who is his country’s best-known cultural figure. It captivates for the scope...

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To Walk Invisible, BBC One

Yorkshire-born screenwriter Sally Wainwright has carved a distinguished niche for herself as chronicler of that brooding, beautiful region’s social and familial dramas. After the romance of Last Tango in Halifax and the gritty panorama of Happy...

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Alan Bennett’s Diaries, BBC Two

Gather round the fire, friends: no Santa down the chimney this Christmas Eve, but the curiously comforting Alan Bennett, with his sardonic and occasionally optimistic diaries. The latest published instalment has the slightly wry title Keeping On...

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Russia and the Arts, National Portrait Gallery

A good half of the portraits in Russia and the Arts are of figures without whom any conception of 19th century European culture would be incomplete. A felicitous subtitle, “The Age of Tolstoy and Tchaikovsky”, provides a natural, even easy point of...

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War and Peace, BBC One

So, Andrew Davies has bitten off the big one. It may have come as a surprise to some that the master of adapting the British classics for television hadn’t read Tolstoy’s classic-to-end-all-classics until the BBC mooted the idea of a new screen...

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In the Heart of the Sea

A host of pictorially arresting, even painterly images can't make a satisfying whole out of In the Heart of the Sea, Ron Howard's film that doesn't dig very deep, its penetrating title notwitstanding. Howard has always been drawn to unusual realms,...

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DVD: Murder in the Cathedral

The real achievement of this remarkable DVD release from the BFI is the fact that it brings the name of George Hoellering back to our attention as a director. His 1951 adaption of TS Eliot’s verse play Murder in the Cathedral has been virtually...

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Return to Larkinland, BBC Four

Return to Larkinland was the second of AN Wilson’s intimate portraits of poets, following his similar excursion to “Betjemanland” last year. His very particular form of exploration of the biographical genre results in a selectively detailed portrait...

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Jane Eyre, National Theatre

Last February, director Sally Cookson shrunk Charlotte Brontë’s 400-page novel Jane Eyre down to a four-and-a-half-hour play spread across two nights at the Bristol Old Vic. Now, as this co-production finally arrives at the National Theatre, it has...

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Lady Chatterley's Lover, BBC One

The major controversy of this revisionist BBC adaptation is not DH Lawrence’s naughty bits, but the lack of them. Gone are the four-letter words and personified genitals – just one half-embarrassed mention of “John Thomas” – while graphic sexual...

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An Open Book: Michael Hulls

The occupation “lighting designer” is too workaday to describe Michael Hulls. The artistry with which he casts illumination or shadow on some of the great dancers of our time make the idea of switches and bulb wattage seem humdrum. Pellucid,...

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Lady Anna: All At Sea, Park Theatre

If you were expecting a fusty, formal adaptation of Anthony Trollope – and one of his least known novels, to boot – Lady Anna: All At Sea will come as a breath of fresh air. Colin Blumenau’s production of Craig Baxter’s play, based loosely around...

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