fri 24/01/2020

adaptation

Uncle Vanya, Harold Pinter Theatre review - a superlative company achievement

Uncle Vanya must surely be the closest, the most essential of Chekhov’s plays, its cast – just four main players who are caught up in its fraught emotional action, and four who are essentially support – a concentrated unit even by the playwright's...

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The Personal History of David Copperfield review – top-drawer Dickens

Armando Iannucci’s move away from the contemporary political satires that made his name, first signalled by his bold, uproariously brilliant Death of Stalin, continues apace with a Dickens adaptation that feels quietly radical. It’s not just...

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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.1917 ★★★★★ Sam Mendes makes his most personal film to date – and one...

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Dracula, BBC One review - horrific, and not in a good way

“Bela Lugosi’s dead,” as Bauhaus sang, in memory of the star of 1931’s Dracula. But of course death has never been an impediment to the career of the enfanged Transylvanian blood-sucker. Filmed and televisualised almost as frequently as Sherlock...

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The Red Shoes, Sadler's Wells review - the ultimate stage movie

Matthew Bourne’s tally of hits is such that many of his dance-drama interpretations of old ballets and films were labelled “classic” as soon as they appeared. Yet The Red Shoes, Bourne’s 2016 tribute to the 1948 film, is arguably the one that most...

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Jumanji: The Next Level review - raising their game

Two years ago Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle dusted off the Robin Williams vehicle from the Nineties with entertaining results, improving on the original with astute casting, a goofy script and special effects that didn’t take themselves too...

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The Ocean at the End of the Lane, National Theatre review - terrifying, magical coming of age story

This scary, electrically beautiful adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s book about living on the faultline between imagination and reality is a fantastically alternative offering for the festive season. While the parameters of the story are dark, it’s an...

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Three Sisters, National Theatre review - Chekhov in time of war

Inua Ellams’ Three Sisters plays Chekhov in the shadow of war, specifically the Nigerian-Biafran secessionist conflict of the late 1960s which so bitterly divided that newly independent nation. It’s a bold move that adds decided new relevance...

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DVD/Blu-ray: The Holly and the Ivy

British cinema has done so badly by Christmas that the revival of a film that parses the nature of the festival while mining its potential for sparking family strife is cause for celebration. Long neglected, The Holly and the Ivy (1952) has been...

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Motherless Brooklyn review – tic tec

Edward Norton has wanted to adapt Motherless Brooklyn since Jonathan Lethem’s acclaimed novel was first published 20 years ago. His film (as producer, writer, director and star) is an obvious labour of love, an evocative, entertaining, old-fashioned...

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Charlie's Angels review - feminism-lite action comedy

“Badass” – as applied to dynamic women – and “girl power” may be the kinds of exhausted clichés that are reductive in the #MeToo and Time’s Up era, but the new Charlie’s Angels movie revitalises the attitude they describe in a way that’s neither...

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Ophelia review - tragic no more

Ophelia is one of Shakespeare’s most iconic yet underdeveloped dramatic roles. A sweet and naïve girl, she’s driven mad by Hamlet’s wavering affections and her father’s death. She was often the subject of paintings, yet rarely of novels until the...

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