thu 20/07/2017

Maggie Smith

Downton Abbey – The Last Episode, ITV

They said there'd never be an audience for a period drama about an aristocratic Edwardian family. Six series later, we're bidding adieu to a national (and indeed global) institution, as Julian Fellowes's motley band of ridiculous, ahistorical and...

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Maggie Smith: 'If there’s an old bat to play, it’ll be me'

Maggie Smith rarely gives interviews. In the week that Downton Abbey's last-ever series episode is broadcast, and she reprises on screen her role in Alan Bennett's The Lady in the Van (pictured below with Alex Jennings), theartsdesk revisits an...

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The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

The oldies are back at Jaipur's Marigold Hotel and they're looking like goodies, too, thanks to a British dame or two and an Ol Parker script that knows when to leave off the breeziness and let the occasional intimation of mortality hold sway. And...

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My Old Lady

An Off Broadway play that largely passed without notice in 2002 is now a movie poised to suffer the same fate, notwithstanding the fact that this starry three-hander marks the film directing debut of the prolific American dramatist Israel Horovitz,...

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Live from the National Theatre: 50 Years on Stage, BBC Two

These celebrations of our yesterdays can easily end up all camembert and wind. But while film people and television people will generally cock such things up, we do still have the odd cultural institution which can be relied upon to throw the right...

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Quartet

Assured, warm and comfy, Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut Quartet is a tasteful farce of froths and strops. Hoffman’s always wanted to direct and it’s not like he hasn’t tried. Dead Poets Society slipped from his hands, both starring and directing...

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The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Travel, health permitting, knows few age barriers (if it did, there would be no Elderhostel), nor does charm, so there are two reasons up front why The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel fully deserves to win over the so-called "grey pound" market and much...

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Downton Abbey: The Finale, ITV1

Defying predictions that there would be no audience for a period costume drama set in an Edwardian country house, Downton Abbey has become the TV event of 2010. Episode one notched 11.6 million viewers (including repeats and ITV Player viewings),...

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Downton Abbey, ITV1

With the BBC still in the middle of shooting their revival of Upstairs, Downstairs, ITV1 have nipped in ahead of them with Julian Fellowes's spiffing new sundown-on-the-aristocracy drama. In a battle of the stage dames, the Beeb has bagged Eileen...

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