sat 27/11/2021

childhood

Blu-ray: Sweet Thing

The independent filmmaker Alexandre Rockwell has flown under the radar since he made his name with the Cassavetes-vibed 1992 New York comedy In the Soup. He recently explained that his career was sabotaged by Harvey Weinstein, who was jealous,...

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The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Duke of York's Theatre review - pure theatrical magic

This show has been a long time coming. Neil Gaiman had the first inklings of The Ocean at the End of the Lane when he was seven years old and living near a farm recorded in the Domesday Book. Several decades later, he wrote a short story for his...

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Blu-ray: Celia

Ann Turner’s 1989 feature debut Celia is one of the great coming-of-age films, an enthralling tale of pre-pubescent angst set against a backdrop of post-war Australian social and political history.Contemporary distributors did not know how to...

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Blu-ray: Running Against the Wind

There’s much to enjoy in Running Against the Wind: Jan Philipp Weyl’s contemporary Ethiopian epic is a visual treat, with excellent performances from its two young leads. And how often do we get to see a film in Amharic with English subtitles?We...

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10 Questions for novelist Mieko Kawakami

Mieko Kawakami sits firmly amongst the Japanese literati for her sharp and pensive depictions of life in contemporary Japan. Since the translation of Breasts and Eggs (2020), she has also become somewhat of an indie fiction icon in the UK, with her...

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Josie Long, Brighton Festival 2021 review - giddy post-lockdown spin on pregnancy-based show

Introduced by Brighton Festival 2021 Guest Director, poet Lemn Sissay, Josie Long, clad in blue denim dungarees and a black tee-shirt, initially hits the stage for a celebratory introduction. She’s here to perform her Tender show about pregnancy and...

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Berlinale 2021: Petite Maman review – magical musings on the parent-child relationship

Hot on the heels of her 2019 triumph Portrait of a Lady on Fire, Céline Sciamma’s fifth feature continues a perfect track record; this is yet another gorgeous and perceptive film, told from a determinedly female perspective but with a wisdom...

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To Olivia review - Keeley Hawes rises above brainless biopic

Sure, Roald Dahl wrote Charlie and the Chocolate Factory but is that any excuse for a film quite so saccharine? He of all challenging and complex men, with a temperament to match, seems an odd subject for the sort of weightless, paint-by-numbers...

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Roald and Beatrix: The Tail of the Curious Mouse, Sky One review – twinkly tale for troubled times

They say "never meet your heroes". That may be true, but it forms the premise of a new TV drama concerning two of the world’s most famous children’s authors – Beatrix Potter and Roald Dahl – who encounter each other at opposite ends of their life....

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Small Axe: Education, BBC One review - domestic drama concludes groundbreaking film series with quiet power

The fifth and final film in the Small Axe series is titled Education. At first, it appears this refers to the education of the central character, 12-year-old London boy Kingsley Smith, impressively played by Kenyah Sandy, who’s transferred to a...

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Blu-ray: The Painted Bird

Václav Marhoul’s The Painted Bird (Nabarvené ptáče in Czech) comes with a lot of baggage, a critics’ screening at the 2019 Venice Festival punctuated by mass walkouts but finishing with a ten-minute standing ovation. Then there’s the supposedly...

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The Witches review – new take lacks magic

 A long shadow looms over Robert Zemeckis’ new take on Roald Dahl’s classic 1980s book The Witches, starring Octavia Spencer, Anne Hathaway and newcomer Jahzir Bruno. That shadow is cast by Nicholas Roeg’s strange and terrifying 1990 adaptation...

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