tue 03/08/2021

America

Bagdad Café, Old Vic review - sweet but scattershot

A gorgeous song exists in search of a show to match over at Bagdad Café, the 1987 film that gave the world the memorably plaintive "Calling You", which is threaded throughout Emma Rice's stage adaptation of the movie with understandable...

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Oleanna, Arts Theatre review - Mamet on power and tragedy

Before seeing this play, I decided to eat a steak. It seemed the right culinary equivalent to David Mamet, one of America’s most provocative and, at times, especially past times, red-blooded writers. This play, whose British premiere was at the...

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Album: Leon Bridges - Gold-Diggers Sound

The sleeve splices Little Richard and Sam Cooke in an archaic, explosive burst of ecstasy. Neo-soul star Leon Bridges’ third album doesn’t settle in the past, though. Taped far from his Forth Worth, Texas hometown in Hollywood, local clubland sounds...

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Album: Peyton - PSA

For 25 years now, LA label Stones Throw records has become one of the most reliable brands in music. It began with, and has always been associated with, the leftfield hip hop of founder George “Peanut Butter Wolf” Manak, and regular contributors...

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Album: David Crosby - For Free

David Crosby hit the headlines a few months back, another artist selling his song catalogue in order to secure his house. These days musicians must stay on the road to earn a living and sell records. It’s a punishing life, even for the young and fit...

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Carlos Ghosn: The Last Flight - Storyville, BBC Four review - the tycoon who fell to earth

The extraordinary story of motor industry executive Carlos Ghosn is a heady combination of power, money, corruption and international politics, with a Mission: Impossible-style ending that carries it over the finishing tape in dramatic style. It...

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Sex/Life, Netflix review - Mills & Boon for the YouPorn era?

Has Netflix succeeded in reshaping Mills & Boon for the YouPorn era? Though situated in a contemporary New York where empowered women run investment companies, earn doctorates in psychology from Columbia University, and deliver forceful lectures...

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Blu-ray: The Night of the Hunter

A United Artists studio executive was treated to a pre-release screening of Charles Laughton’s The Night of the Hunter in 1955. His damning response was, “it’s too arty.” The studio showed little interest in promotion and it was deemed a flop....

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Hairspray, London Coliseum review - brighter and more welcome than ever

A revival of a multi-award winning musical, with a big star or two, may look like a safe choice to re-open London’s largest theatre, the Coliseum, but there was a tingle of jeopardy in the air, exemplified when the show catches you by surprise...

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Framing Britney Spears, Sky Documentaries review - the rollercoaster ride of the former teen icon

She became one of the most successful pop stars in history, but Britney Spears has also become a paradigm of the horrors and pitfalls of life in the white heat of showbusiness. This new documentary by Samantha Stark (made by the New York Times)...

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In the Heights review - to life, Lin-Manuel Miranda-style

The general uptick of late in film versions of stage musical hits continues apace with In the Heights, which, to my mind anyway, is far more emotionally satisfying and visually robust onscreen than it was on Broadway, where it won the 2008 Tony for...

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Danielle Evans: The Office of Historical Corrections review - what happens when history comes knocking

There’s something refreshing about fiction you can easily trace back to the question “what if?” What if this or that existed? What would happen? What could? That question doesn’t have to send you down memory lane, wondering about roads not...

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