wed 27/05/2020

21st century

Women Make Film: Part Two review - two steps forward, one step back

The second half of Mark Cousins’ documentary on films by women filmmakers starts with religion; it ends with song and dance. This is a second seven-hour journey through cinema. It reconfirms Women Make Film as a remarkable feat of excavation and...

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Single: Bob Dylan - Murder Most Foul

A combination of chopped-up newsreel and fever dream, “Murder Most Foul” is Bob Dylan’s most striking piece of work in years. This is the author of “Desolation Row” populating a 17-minute song with a lifetime of remembered cultural fragments,...

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Album: Sufjan Stevens &. Lowell Brams - Aporia

Sufjan Stevens is an immensely creative musician – a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and composer. His work ranges from sophisticated dreamy pop that has influenced many, not least Bon Iver to grandiose and sometimes disturbing soundscapes. He...

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I and You, Hampstead Theatre review - now streaming online, this YA play is oddly pertinent

The way that theatres and other arts institutions have leapt into action over the past week, providing a wealth of material online and new ways to connect with audiences, has been truly inspirational. Yesterday, the Hampstead Theatre re-released on...

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Nathalie Léger: The White Dress review – masterfully introverted

Nathalie Léger’s The White Dress brings personal and public tragedy together in a narrative as absorbingly melancholic as its subject is shocking. The story described by Léger’s narrator – a scarcely fictional version of herself – is of the...

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Feel Good, Channel 4 and Netflix review - a fresh, bingeable comedy that digs deep but feels mild

“I am not intense.” That declaration arrives early in Feel Good, the new Channel 4 and Netflix romantic comedy fronted by comedian Mae Martin, who plays a fictionalised version of herself. Over Mae’s shoulder, we see a literal trash fire. She’s lit...

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Dark Waters review - an ominous drama with plenty of backbone, but not enough flesh

Watching Dark Waters, the latest film from director Todd Haynes (Carol, Far from Heaven), I kept thinking — what’s the opposite of a love letter? The film is based on the work of Rob Bilott, a real-life lawyer who uncovered a corruption scandal so...

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Sex Education, Series 2, Netflix review - the teen sex show we deserved

Netflix’s Sex Education has returned to our screens and streams. The show made waves last year for its refreshing take on the teen comedy-drama. It took on abortion, consent and female pleasure — subjects strikingly absent from our actual high...

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Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium, Whitechapel review - ten distinctive voices

“From today, painting is dead.” These melodramatic words were uttered by French painter, Paul Delaroche on seeing a photograph for the first time. That was in 1840 and, since then, painting has been declared dead many times over, yet it refuses to...

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The Haystack, Hampstead Theatre review - a chilling surveillance state thriller

With counter-terrorism an urgent concern – and specifically how best to find, track and use the data of suspected threats, without sacrificing our privacy and civil liberties – it’s excellent timing for a meaty drama about the surveillance state....

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CD: El Khat - Saadia Jefferson

Israel isn’t generally kind to the Jews who have come from somewhere other than eastern Europe and Russia. Music has provided one of the avenues through which this despised and often culturally Arab minority has been able to make itself recognised....

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Dear Evan Hansen, Noël Coward Theatre review - this social outcast will steal your heart

Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical Dear Evan Hansen is an institution in the States, running on Broadway since 2016 and currently on its second year of a national tour. It also made a star...

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