fri 25/05/2018

history

A Change is Gonna Come, Brighton Festival review - lively, winning jazz adventure

Watching this band in action is a treat. They gel absolutely and play off one another in a manner that’s easy and mellow, yet also sparks by occasionally teetering on the edge of their virtuosic abilities. The songs played throughout the evening at...

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Lessons in Love and Violence, Royal Opera review - savage elegance never quite glows red-hot

A rope is mercy; a razor-blade to the throat, a kiss; a red-hot poker… But, of course, we never get anything so literal as the poker in George Benjamin and Martin Crimp’s elegant, insinuating retelling of Christopher Marlowe’s Edward II. The title...

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DVD: Blood and Glory

George Orwell’s maxim that sport is war minus the shooting never loses its currency. This summer it may acquire more when the football squads of the pampered west head for Russia. Historically, it applies to a small sub-genre of films about the...

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DVD: Queerama

Last year, the BFI commemorated the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality with the release of Queerama, part of its Gross Indecency film season. Now available on DVD, the documentary from Daisy Asquith eschews standard...

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Agnès Poirier: Left Bank review - Paris in war and peace

There are too many awestruck cultural histories of Paris to even begin to count. The Anglophone world has always been justly dazzled by its own cohorts of Paris-based writers and artists, as well as by the seemingly effortless superiority of...

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Returning to Haifa, Finborough Theatre review - a bumpy journey into the Arab-Israeli past

This year the state of Israel marks its 70th birthday. Which means it will also be the year Palestinians remember the Nakba, the catastrophe, the mass dispossession. With that in mind, the Public Theater in New York commissioned this adaptation of a...

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Ursula K Le Guin - Dreams Must Explain Themselves review - enraging and enlightening

Essay collections are happily mainstream now, from Zadie Smith to Oliver Sacks, with more and more bits and bobs coming from unexpected quarters. These patchwork quilts from remarkable writers can be significant, nowhere more so than with those from...

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Roma Agrawal: Built review - solid love

"I've been known to stroke concrete," writes self-professed geek Roma Agrawal – and from the very beginning of her memoir-cum-introduction to structural engineering, Built, where she describes her awe as a toddler at the glass and steel canyon of...

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Great American Railway Journeys, Series 3, BBC Two review - edutainment despite shortage of trains

Michael Portillo has barely been off a train since leaving politics, taking journeys blending scenery and history: it must be a relief receiving plaudits for edutainment instead of the abuse habitually heaped on politicians.Herewith the third...

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Britannia, Sky Atlantic review - Druids, sex and sorcery

What did the Romans do for us? On the evidence of new drama Britannia, they pillaged, murdered and tortured, but also found themselves mesmerised by the psychedelic Druid magic that hovered over our ancient land like fairy dust.Creator Jez...

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Darkest Hour review - Winston airbrushed for the 21st century

The Great Man theory of history is applied by Darkest Hour director Joe Wright to his star Gary Oldman as much as their subject Winston Churchill. Oldman’s performance is the sole, sufficient reason to see a film in which little else finally lingers...

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Hamilton, Victoria Palace review - rich, radical and ridiculously exciting

“Are you aware that we’re making history?” demands Alexander Hamilton in the show that has finally made the lesser-known Founding Father an international household name. And whether its creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda, knew it when he wrote that line or...

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