tue 13/04/2021

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Polly Barton: Fifty Sounds review - what is lost in translation

Fifty Sounds is translator Polly Barton’s first novel, conceived as part of Fitzcarraldo’s annual essay prize. The book begins with listed Japanese words or phrases (katekanas), translated into poetic English, setting the reader up for the central...

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The One, Netflix review - the downside of scientific matchmaking

Readers of John Marrs’s 2017 novel The One should probably look away now, since Netflix’s dramatisation of the story bears scant resemblance to the book. The basic premise – that a corporation has invented a method of DNA testing which can match...

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Simple Passion review – a case of female amour fou

Pushing 40, Simple Passion’s Hélène (Laetitia Dosch) lectures Paris college students on poetry and is single mother to pre-adolescent Paul (Lou Teymour-Thion). Blessed with a bountiful Deneuve-ian mane, she’s a pale but unfallen bloom in her late...

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Malcolm & Marie review - actorly grandstanding in beautiful black and white

Do you want to spend 105 minutes trapped in a house with two people arguing, or do you already feel that your life under lockdown is quite quarrelsome and claustrophobic enough? If your answer is the former, then Malcolm & Marie is the...

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Baby Done review - romcom done right

Romcoms. We all know the tried and tested formula: immature guy, uptight girl, they meet, they like each other, hate each other, and end up in love. It’s as reliable as it is unrealistic, and sometimes it takes a film like Baby Done to remind you...

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Time review - a stunning portait of enduring love

Sometimes in fictional cinema, a character can seem so strong, so righteous, that you begin to doubt the reality of the piece. How can anyone be that good when faced with such hardship? Perhaps these thoughts make us feel better about ourselves, and...

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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.Enola Holmes ★★★★ Millie Bobby Brown gives the patriarchy what-for in...

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Sunnymead Court, Tristan Bates Theatre review - a lovely lockdown romance

The first words of Sunnymead Court, a new play at the Tristan Bates Theatre, are ominous. “We are transitioning from human experiences to digital experiences.” Oof. Thankfully, this isn’t another gloomy lockdown drama about the evils of Zoom quizzes...

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I'm Thinking of Ending Things review - only disconnect

I’m Thinking of Ending Things ends in a giddying gusher of weirdness, the steady drip of earlier oddness finally bursting its narrative banks, till a horror scene becomes a Gene Kelly ballet, and an Oklahoma! tune is sung in bitter valediction by a...

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Sleepless, Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre review - love from afar in this amiable musical

Originally due to premiere back in March, Sleepless – a musical version of the winning 1993 movie Sleepless in Seattle – now acts as a test case for the return of fully staged but socially distanced indoor theatre, AKA Stage 4 of the Government’s “...

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Matthias & Maxime review - psychology and romance make for cinematic gold

The emotional rawness of Xavier Dolan’s films reflects a rare humanity and empathy. For someone still only 31, the French-Canadian writer and director displays an uncanny sense of the passionate turmoil that animates his characters. The subtle...

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Chemical Hearts review - turn off the sound

Musings on the agonies of adolescent love fall like dead weight in this wearying if well-acted adaptation by writer-director Richard Tanne of the 2016 Young Adult novel Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland. 17-year-old Henry Page (Austin Abrams...

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