sat 25/05/2024

Catholicism

theartsdesk Q&A: Marco Bellocchio - the last maestro

The last of the old maestros is standing tall. Marco Bellocchio was a Marxist firebrand when he made his iconoclastic debut with Fists in the Pocket (1965). Now aged 84, he makes intellectually and emotionally muscular, hit epics about abused...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Padre Pio

Faith and damnation frequently collide in Abel Ferrara’s films, drawing fiery performances from often starry casts. The New York master who made The Driller Killer and Bad Lieutenant now lives in Rome and, like his Pasolini, Padre Pio is a political...

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The Miracle Club review - unchallenging but enjoyable Irish drama

If I had to condense the Catholic faith of my upbringing in one sentence, I would say that it essentially comes down to two things: we're all sinners, but we are all capable of redemption. (Theological experts may take a different view.) That boiled...

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Under the Black Rock, Arcola Theatre review - political thriller turns soapy

“Darkly comic thrillers” (as they like to say) set in Ireland tracking how families, or quasi-families, fall apart under pressure are very much in vogue just now. Whether The Banshees of Inisherin will garner the Oscars haul it hardly deserves...

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The Two Popes, Rose Theatre review - sparkling with wit and pathos

It can’t have been an easy pitch. “Popes. Both foreign, yes. German and Argentinian – sorry, can’t change either. Eighty-something and the other’s a decade younger. Mainly just talking about their pasts and their different approaches to Roman...

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Treason The Musical In Concert, Theatre Royal Drury Lane review - plenty of musical gunpowder but not enough plot

A semi-staged concert performance of a musical is a little like a third trimester ultrasound scan. You should see the anatomy in development, the shape of what is to come and, most importantly, discern a heart beating at its centre. But you can’t...

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Sister Act the Musical, Eventim Apollo review - the West End meets the Westway

If jukebox shows occupy one end of the musical theatre spectrum and Stephen Sondheim's masterpieces the other, Sister Act The Musical is somewhere in-between.We get songs we know (Alan Menken's score, heard first on the West End and then, in 2011,...

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Last Easter, Orange Tree Theatre review - over-performative and strangely off-putting

Last Easter has become a lot more relatable since it was forced to postpone this run at the Orange Tree Theatre, originally scheduled for 2020. It’s about a group of theatre-makers – an actor, a drag performer, a prop-maker, and a lighting designer...

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Finding The Way Back review - alcoholism on the rebound

Gavin O’Connor has made a career out of sturdy films that make grown men cry. His best was Warrior - a hulking, tear-jerking tale of male fragility and addiction. His latest Finding The Way Back is a potent, raw drama that...

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Camino Skies review - NZ documentary brings no surprises

A documentary about six middle-aged Antipodeans, four women and two men, walking the 500 mile pilgrims’ path through France and Spain to the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela sounds uplifting, inspiring, even fun. Just the ticket, perhaps, when...

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Madonna, London Palladium review - a fiesta of the surreal and the fiercely fabulous

The first time I heard Madonna, I was 8 years old at a school disco. Horrified parents, who came to pick us up as we jumped up and down yelling along to “Like A Virgin” in a fluorescent flurry of topknots, puffer skirts and lace gloves, subsequently...

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Berlioz Requiem, Spyres, Philharmonia Orchestra, Nelson, St Paul's Cathedral review - masses and voids

Asked to choose five or ten minutes of favourite Berlioz on the 150th anniversary of his death (yesterday), surely few would select anything from his giant Requiem (Grande Messe des Morts). This is a work to shock and awe, not to be loved - music...

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