tue 10/12/2019

Syria

The Cave review - heroic Syrian hospital workers

War crimes are war crimes, irrespective of the victims’ ages, gender, or ethnicities, and no one’s torture or murder is more abhorrent than anyone else’s. Yet because children are essentially innocent and incapable of defending themselves, and...

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For Sama review - besieged, bombed, and defiant in Syria

People who idly use the phrase “it’s like living in a war zone” when considering their domestic mess should see Waad al-Kateab’s documentary For Sama.Everyone should see it, in fact. Waad lived in a terrifying war zone – besieged East Aleppo in...

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CD: Bedouine - Bird Songs of a Killjoy

With her timeless vocals and jazz-inflected folk melodies, it feels like a bit of Los Angeles songwriter Bedouine lives in the golden age of Hollywood. It’s a dichotomy she goes as far as to address on “Echo Park”, a woozy Sunday morning wander...

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A Private War review - Rosamund Pike burns with passion in well-meaning biopic

The Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin lived such a fearless life that it's a shame this celluloid biopic isn't correspondingly brave. Sincere to a fault and bolstered by a blazing performance from an impassioned Rosamund Pike, Matthew...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Matthew Heineman on directing 'A Private War'

The release of Matthew Heineman’s film A Private War, about the tumultuous life and 2012 death of renowned Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin, has gained an added edge of newsworthiness from this week’s verdict by Washington DC’s US...

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DVD: A Moment in the Reeds

Mikko Makela’s debut feature is as sheerly concentrated a piece of filmmaking as you can imagine. The Finnish director – previously better known as an actor – manages his principle cast of three immaculately as they play out a powerful drama that...

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Under the Wire review - risking everything to tell the world the truth

She was “the most important war correspondent of her generation”, says Sean Ryan, her editor at The Sunday Times. And her colleague Paul Conroy describes her as “a complete and utter one-off – exceptionally driven, with a real sense of purpose”....

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The Jungle, Playhouse Theatre review - new territory

"I am dead," declares Okot before recounting the horrors he survived to reach Calais. Each time, he says, "I died." How many times can you die before you are truly dead? What is it that finally kills you? These are the questions at the heart of...

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City of Ghosts review - chilling but inspiring report on Syria's citizen journalists

Raqqa was once a prosperous if little-known town in northern Syria. Since 2014, however, it has served as the de facto capital of ISIS’s self-styled caliphate, and as such has been physically decimated, its population subjected to increasingly...

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Syria: The World's War, BBC Two review - anatomy of a conflict, brilliantly told

This was not a film that left you with much respect for the wisdom of politicians, but perhaps its truest line came from John Kerry, when he called the ongoing – seven years, and counting – Syrian conflict “an insult to the humanity of this planet...

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Civilisations, BBC Two review - no shocks from Schama

Lord Clark –  “of Civilisation”, as he was nicknamed, not necessarily affectionately – presented the 13 episodes of the eponymous series commissioned by David Attenborough for BBC Two in 1969; it was subtitled “A Personal View”, and encompassed...

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Human Flow review - two hours of human misery

Soaring over an expanse of blue sea, a white bird traverses the screen diagonally. Gliding unhindered through the air, it is the embodiment of freedom; by contrast, the movement of people down below is constrained by border crossings and passport...

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