sun 25/06/2017

royalty

King Charles III, BBC Two review - royal crisis makes thrilling drama

Actor Oliver Chris, who plays William in Mike Bartlett’s ingeniously-crafted play about the monarchy, was doing some pre-transmission fire-fighting by going round telling interviewers he couldn’t see what anybody (eg the Daily Mail) could find to...

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Henry IX, UK Gold, review - 'return of sitcom classics'

It has been a long, long time since Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais wrote a new sitcom; in their heyday they created The Likely Lads and its sequel, Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads?, Porridge and Auf Wiedersehen, Pet, all of which have become...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Ludwig

No-one has ever matched costume drama to psychological depth quite like Luchino Visconti. Much of it has to do with what Henry James termed a "divided consciousness": as a nobleman who became a communist in World War Two and was relatively open...

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When Snowdon starred in Peter Sellers' home movie

On screen, two hoodlums in macs and homburgs debate the best way to waste a victim. One of them, played by Peter Sellers, proffers a revolver. The other, who from under his hat has something of Herbert Lom about his profile, pulls on a cigarette and...

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Portrait of the Artist, The Queen's Gallery

Born in Rome and taught by her artist father, Artemisia Gentileschi (1593-1652) led a colourfully energetic life. As an adolescent she was raped by her father’s assistant  – an episode which unusually, then as now, actually came to public trial...

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The Crown, Netflix

Peter Morgan can't get enough of Her Majesty. Ten years ago he wrote The Queen (with Helen Mirren starring), in 2013 he brought us the stage play The Audience (Dame Helen, again), and now he's written all 10 episodes of this first series of Netflix'...

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Victoria, Series Finale, ITV

One down, eight childbirths to go. The young Queen Victoria was delivered of her first child at the climax of this moreish opening series, and the bells of Windsor tolled for joy. ITV, debutant scriptwriter Daisy Goodwin and biographical consultant...

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Versailles, Series Finale, BBC Two

So much has happened since the first of June when Versailles flounced on to our screens with its flowing locks and flashing cocks. The British people have voted to widen the Channel, the Conservatives have a new leader, Labour doesn’t have one and...

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Versailles, BBC Two

In the middle of the last century the worst thing that could be said about a working-class housewife was that she had “run off with a black man”. Well, the Queen of France, no better than she ought to be, has had it off with a black man (in fact her...

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The Windsors, Channel 4

There’s little chance, I would guess, that the Windsors were gathered on the sofa to watch The Windsors last night. The show, thankfully, is not another attempt to oil up the collective fundament of the British royal family (and goodness knows...

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Kings of War, Toneelgroep Amsterdam, Barbican

Banished from the Barbican are the hollow kings of the mediocre RSC Henrys IV and V. In their place comes a whole new procession of living, breathing monarchs in a vision that's light years away from bad heritage Shakespeare. Doyen of Dutch-Belgian...

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Richard II, Shakespeare's Globe

The earthy contact with groundlings that Shakespeare’s Globe offers in its stagings makes a comical but telling context for Richard II, a play largely about political point-scoring between kings. The people whose interests lie so remote, in reality...

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