sat 25/10/2014

Tom Birchenough

tom.birchenough

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Bio
Tom has been based largely in Moscow since 1991, from where he has written for a range of publications. He has contributed to Variety since 1993, and was for many years the film critic for the main English-language publication in Russia, The Moscow Times. He has been associate producer on a number of television documentaries on Russian subjects.

Articles by Tom Birchenough

The Way He Looks

Falling in love for the first time is one of the standard tropes of the movies. Brazilian director Daniel Ribeiro gives it a new twist by making the teenage hero of his The Way He Looks (Hoje Eu...

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Storyville: Russia's Toughest Prison - The Condemned, BBC Four

The initial challenge – and there should be no underestimating the scale of it – of Nick Read’s documentary Russia's Toughest Prison - The Condemned must have been getting into a location which the...

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Cosmonauts: How Russia Won the Space Race / The Spaceman of Afghanistan, BBC Four

Cosmonauts: How Russia Won the Space Race (*****) arrived at a strange time. With its remarkable accumulation of Soviet archive material and interviews with key figures, including Alexei Leonov, the...

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Cathedrals of Culture

Back at the Venice Biennale in 2010, the German film director Wim Wenders showed a 3D video installation titled “If Buildings Could Talk”.Exploring the theme of how architecture interacts with human...

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Notes from Underground, Print Room

“I am spiteful! I am ill! You are not going to like this!” With these words Harry Lloyd opens his one-man show that adapts the Dostoevsky 1864 novella that is often hailed as the first work of...

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Human Universe, BBC Two

Brian Cox has a very beguiling way of expressing quiet wonder. He’s taken on the very largest of subjects in Human Universe, extending traditions of science and natural history broadcasting towards a...

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You and the Night

At the risk of endorsing national stereotypes, I’ll still describe Yann Gonzalez’ feature debut You and the Night as a very French film. Its appearance in Critics’ Week at Cannes last year brought...

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DVD: Goltzius and the Pelican Company

In his director’s interview for Goltzius and the Pelican Company Peter Greenaway describes the public profiles that his films have achieved over the years, dividing them into an effective A and B...

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DVD: A Jester's Tale

The name of Czech director Karel Zeman is far less-known in the English-speaking world than it deserves to be. He began working during World War Two, establishing a name for himself in the rich Czech...

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Night Will Fall

More than once in André Singer’s documentary Night Will Fall, his interviewees describe their experience as like “looking into hell”. We hear phrases like “world of nightmare”, “utter shock”, “...

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The Village, Series 2 Finale, BBC One

You may have had to search for his name in the closing credits of this final episode of series two of The Village, but all plaudits were due to its composer Adrian Corker, who gave us a great score...

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DVD: A Thousand Times Good Night

There’s war in the world outside and much conflict at home in Norwegian director Eric Poppe’s A Thousand Times Good Night. The film is centred in every sense around the poised, taut performance of...

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All Creatures Great and Stuffed, Channel 4

“Changing perceptions” is the byline that Mitsubishi gives to its sponsorship of Channel 4’s documentary slot. Animal-lovers, a constituency that surely makes up a sizable part of evening viewers,...

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Manuscripts Don't Burn

Iranian director Mohammad Rasoulof’s Manuscripts Don’t Burn will raise many questions for its viewers, not least the practical one: just how was it made at all?Rasoulof has had plenty of problems...

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Gems TV, ITV

The Bennet family had an issue. Time to get the Austenesque quips out of the way. For the Bennets in Gems TV the truth universally acknowledged was, roughly: “That a £100 million family-run jewellery...

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Andrew Marr’s Great Scots - The Writers Who Shaped a Nation, BBC Two

You didn’t have to wait for the words in the closing credits, “written and presented by”, to know that The Writers Who Shaped a Nation was a project that Andrew Marr was involved with fully. Its...

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