wed 20/09/2017

prison

A Tale of Two Cities, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre review - it was the longest of times

Much loved, yes. But Dickens’s novel is probably little read by modern audiences and so a chance to see a new adaptation of this tale of discontent, riot and general mayhem set in the French revolution and spread across London and Paris in the late...

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Orange Is the New Black, Season 5, Netflix review - counterpoint in a three-day prison riot

Rippling outward from the initial story of a seemingly nice WASP woman who finds herself having to adapt in a women's prison, Orange Is the New Black quickly developed into the most multilayered, almost indigestibly rich of American TV dramas. By...

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Fidelio, Longborough Festival review - death to the concept of concepts

Opera directors must, I suppose, direct. But one could wish that they kept their mouths shut, at least outside the rehearsal studio. The condescension in Longborough’s programme-book interview with the director (Orpha Phelan) and designer (Madeleine...

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The Night Of, Sky Atlantic

On the face of it a murder mystery, The Night Of develops steadily into a panoramic survey of the American justice and prison system and attitudes to race and class. Produced by BBC Drama and HBO, it's based on the BBC's 2008 series Criminal Justice...

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Bobby Sands: 66 Days

There’s much more to Brendan J Byrne’s engrossing, even-handed documentary Bobby Sands: 66 Days than its title might at first suggest. The timeline that led up to the death on 5 May 1981 of the IRA prisoner provides the immediate context – an...

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The Fear of 13

David Sington’s The Fear of 13 is many things – blisteringly immediate, compelling, emotionally devastating – but at times it may have you pondering whether it fits into any traditional “documentary” category.Over the hour-and-a-half of its run, it...

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Storyville: Russia's Toughest Prison - The Condemned, BBC Four

The initial challenge – and there should be no underestimating the scale of it – of Nick Read’s documentary Russia's Toughest Prison - The Condemned must have been getting into a location which the great majority of its inmates will never leave....

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DVD: Starred Up

Director David Mackenzie tells us in this disc’s extras that Starred Up is his first genre film, and Fox’s low-rent sleeve art suggests that this could be another dreary, thuggish Britflick. The prison drama clichés come thick and fast, from the...

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Starred Up

Director David MacKenzie has made a prison drama for those who don’t like the genre and an ace in the hole for those who do. Starred Up is an example of how quality filmmaking captures an audience no matter what the topic – and here, that quality...

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Sifting the Evidence: the Great Train Robbery, 50 Years On

There’s a wonderful moment in Bruce Reynolds’s autobiography when he describes what became of his mate, a fellow train robber who had fled to Canada but was hunted down by the enigmatic Tommy Butler. Four and a half years after the Great Train...

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The Scottsboro Boys, Young Vic

Forever breaking into song and dance, musicals are fun, fun, fun. They are primarily what folks go to for uplifting entertainment, are they not? Actually, many of the best aren't anything like that simplistic. Opening at the Young Vic last night,...

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The Love Girl and the Innocent, Southwark Playhouse

Southwark Playhouse's new production of The Love Girl and the Innocent is London’s first in over 30 years, and there’s a reason Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s play rarely reaches the stage: it’s a lumpy mammoth of a script, demanding a cast upwards of 50...

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