fri 22/11/2019

actors

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil review - fantasy follow-up falls flat

Angelina Jolie is back again with those cut-glass cheekbones and ink-black wings, reprising her role as the self-proclaimed ‘Mistress of Evil’, in Joachim Rønning’s nauseating sequel to the 2014 live-action spin on Sleeping Beauty. As the...

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Mephisto [A Rhapsody], Gate Theatre review - the callowness of history

You wonder about the title of French dramatist Sam Gallet’s Mephisto [A Rhapsody], an adaptation for our days of Klaus Mann’s 1936 novel about an actor unable to resist the blandishments of fame, even if they come at the cost of losing himself....

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Noises Off, Garrick Theatre review - sublime chaos in Michael Frayn's meta-farce

“Doors and sardines. Getting on, getting off. Getting the sardines on, getting the sardines off. That’s farce. That’s the theatre. That’s life.” Michael Frayn’s laugh-til-you-weep backstage comedy transfers from the Lyric Hammersmith (where it...

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Ian McKellen On Stage, Harold Pinter Theatre review - a master relishes the joy of theatre

Reviewing Ian McKellen's show is, in one sense, like appraising the Taj Mahal or Mount Everest: he too is an awe-inspiring phenomenon. In another sense, Sir Ian is not like that at all, going out of his way to be available to the adoring patrons...

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David Harewood: Psychosis and Me, BBC Two review - actor confronts his painful past

In the week that the Jeremy Kyle show has been yanked permanently off air after the death of one of its vulnerable guests, the timing couldn’t have been better for the BBC to show how sensitively the old-school broadcaster handles contributors with...

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Obituary: Bibi Andersson 1935-2019

"One talks, the other doesn’t" is about as crude a description as could be of the Swedish masterpiece, Persona. Profoundly experimental even today, Ingmar Bergman’s film was at base about the intense, vampiric encounter between a mute actress...

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DVD: Mifune - The Last Samurai

Akira Kurosawa’s 1950 early masterpiece Rashomon was a revelation for post-war western screen audiences, winning the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival that year and becoming a standard-bearer for the new generation of Japanese film. Its lead...

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CD: Jessie Buckley - Wild Rose OST

Reviewing the soundtrack for a film you’ve not seen is a tricky act. It’s like reviewing a book based on its pictures – you’re missing the context of the music’s purpose. But then, not all soundtracks are created equal, and Wild Rose is one designed...

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Q&A Special: Actor Bruno Ganz on playing Hitler

There is nothing quite like the Iffland-Ring in this country. The property of the Austrian state, for two centuries it has been awarded to the most important German-speaking actor of the age, who after a suitable period nominates his successor and...

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The Mule review - good ol' boy rides again

Baggage can weigh a movie down. The Mule comes with quite a bit of baggage, and not just the kilos of coke stashed in the car’s trunk. Clint Eastwood’s fifty plus years as a screen icon turned director, his dodgy love life and libertarian politics...

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Destroyer review - Kidman shines in middling crime drama

Destroyer. It’s an apt name. Like the film, it's grandiose and blunt. Nicole Kidman is almost unrecognisable (a requirement when aiming for nominations) as Detective Erin Bell, a damaged survivor of an undercover heist gone wrong. When her target...

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'I'll show the lot of you!' Richard E Grant's Oscar nomination

Richard E Grant has captivated the internet. The actor greeted the news of his nomination for an Academy Award by returning to his first rental when no one had heard of him. There he whooped with childlike delight, and then shared the whole thing in...

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