sun 09/08/2020

Vietnam

Da 5 Bloods review - Spike Lee takes on the black GIs' experience in Vietnam

Spike Lee’s ambitious tale of five American veterans returning to Vietnam to settle unfinished business, should have opened out of competition at Cannes last month. He was set to become the first African American film-maker to head the festival jury...

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The Last Full Measure review - exceptional performances elevate middling Vietnam war drama

It’s impossible to deny the sincerity with which Todd Robinson has approached the true story of William H. Pitsenbarger, a US Air Force Pararescueman who was killed in action while rescuing over 60 injured soldiers during one of the bloodiest...

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Danger Close review - the Vietnam war from an Australian perspective

The battle of Long Tan in Vietnam isn’t well known to the casual observer, but it has entered the military folklore of Australia and New Zealand. On 18 August 1966, 108 men of Delta company, 6th Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment found...

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Summer Rolls, Park Theatre review - racism laid bare to mixed results

There’s a moment in Summer Rolls, at the Nguyen family dinner table, when a veil is briefly pulled back on the ugly racism so many Asian immigrant communities must endure in the UK. The treasured son, Anh, who has been rejected for jobs despite his...

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Ocean Vuong: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous review – the new avant-garde

Ocean Vuong’s debut novel is written as a letter to his mother, who cannot read. She cannot read because, when she was five, her schoolhouse was burnt to the ground in an American napalm raid. “Our mother tongue, then,” writes Vuong, is the “mark of...

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Matthew Sweet: Operation Chaos review - paranoia and insanity in the Cold War

In 2017 the documentary series The Vietnam War told the story, from soup to nuts, of America’s misadventure in south-east Asia. It now seems the comprehensive history may have missed some nuts out. Not that anyone would question the sanity of a...

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Best of 2017: TV

Young people will laugh incredulously when you tell them that once upon a time, there was only one television channel in Britain. Now we've lost count, and as even the Queen pointed out in her Christmas broadcast, many of her subjects would now be...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Indochine

The end of empire has rarely looked more cinematically beguiling than in Régis Wargnier’s Indochine, the visually lavish 1992 drama written for Catherine Deneuve, who gets the film’s epigraphic line about “believing that the world is made of things...

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Gallery: Philip Jones Griffiths' Vietnam

The most celebrated reportage to come out the Vietnam War was Michael Herr’s Dispatches, rightly acclaimed as the most visceral journey into the dark heart of America’s first military defeat. But unlike all wars before it, Vietnam was a genuinely...

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CD: Hanoi Masters - War Is a Wound, Peace Is a Scar

The music of melancholia takes on varied forms on different continents: the religious spirit and anger of the blues contrasts with the edgy rebelliousness of Greek rembetika, and the spiritual longing and melismatic vocal whirling of the Turkish...

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Dogfight, Southwark Playhouse

It is no mean feat to turn an audience against idealistic, painfully young marines heading for the nightmarish hell of Vietnam, but Dogfight comes perilously close to achieving that undesirable goal in the manner of their introduction. The band of...

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Miss Saigon, Prince Edward Theatre

The heat is on in Saigon, and 25 years after its world premiere, Cameron Mackintosh has just turned up the thermostat. Boublil and Schönberg's celebrated take on Puccini's Madam Butterfly has always been my favourite of their collaborations (though...

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