tue 07/07/2020

family relationships

Bette Howland: Blue in Chicago review – the city on trial, with the writer as witness

You feel at times, while reading the collection Blue in Chicago, that Bette Howland might have missed her vocation. In another life, Howland – until recently almost completely lost to literary history – could have made a name for herself as a...

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Back Roads review - nice cheekbones, not much else

Back Roads has languished largely unseen since its completion in 2017, and one can see why: lurid to the point of absurdity, this adaptation of a 1999 novel by co-screenwriter Tawni O’Dell is preposterously self-serious and doesn’t augur well...

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A White, White Day review - white heat

This Icelandic film begins in the titular land of steam, as rain and mist envelop an erratic car which soon tumbles to its doom. The wife of rural policeman Ingimundur (Ingvar Sigurdsson) was driving, and the mystery of her death and open, infinite...

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The Best Films Out Now

There are films to meet every taste in theartsdesk's guide to the best movies currently on release. In our considered opinion, any of the titles below is well worth your attention.7500 ★★★★ Debut thriller will have you avoiding airports for goodA...

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Theatre Lockdown Special 11: Shakespeare-as-rave, a starlit Old Vic, and, yes, those singing nuns

Might we be nearing light at the end of the lockdown tunnel? It definitely seems that way, with the news in recent days that social life beyond the home may be resuming soon, at least after a fashion. All the while, theatrical offerings continue to...

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Alan Bennett's Talking Heads, BBC One review - still lives run deep

The eyes have it in Alan Bennett's Talking Heads, which is in no way to discount this venerable writer's gift for words. Time and again in this vaunted series of dramatic solos, ten of which have now been remade alongside two new ones, a character...

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The Day After I'm Gone review - a subtle portrayal of a grieving father and his teenage daughter

Yoram (Menashe Noy), a vet in a Tel Aviv safari park, knows how to treat a sick jaguar (startling to see such a magnificent beast in an oxygen mask) but he has no idea how to comfort his troubled 17-year-old daughter Roni (a powerful Zohar Meidan)....

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Banana Split review - likable if essentially timid romcom

Is friendship mightier and more durable than sex? That's the proposition put forward by the engaging if ultimately cautious Banana Split, the Los Angeles-set romcom in which two teenagers become friends unbeknownst to the long-haired himbo boyfriend...

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Days of the Bagnold Summer review - wry suburban drama

Simon Bird's feature film debut as a director is a gentle, warm-hearted look at a mother and son's strained relationship as they are forced to spend the summer holidays together when the teenager's dad cruelly cancels a trip to see him and his...

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Theatre Lockdown Special 6: A prolific playwright, a timeless play, and speeches galore

Can we really be entering a third month in lockdown? Indeed we can, and culture, thank heavens, shows no signs whatsoever of leaving us in the lurch. This week's lineup of highlights offers a typically electic bunch, ranging from two sizable...

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Midnight Your Time, Donmar Warehouse online review – intimate and quietly moving

During lockdown, some of the best online theatre has been shows that are specially created for this digital format. Much better than dull records of dramas that might have worked well on stage, but now seem sadly moribund and exceedingly slow on the...

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Cuck review - tediously nihilistic

Deep from the heart of Trumpland comes Cuck, a deeply unpleasant film about a totally repellent character. Directed and co-written by Rob Lambert, the film opened simultaneously last autumn in the States with Joker, with which it shares an...

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