sat 16/11/2019

New York

Vampire Weekend, O2 Academy, Birmingham review – clean-cut Americans fail to ignite

By the time Vampire Weekend reached Birmingham on their latest UK jaunt, they had unfortunately managed to mislay their support band, the colourful Songhoy Blues. This was a great shame, as the Malians would surely have added a bit of colour to the...

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Brittany Runs a Marathon review - believable body positive parable

Brittany (Jillian Bell) is the unhappily overweight life of the party, numbing her lonely life with booze and acerbic one-liners as she nears 30. Bad medical news makes her obsessively turn to running, eventually entering the New York marathon, with...

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Thomas J Campanella: Brooklyn - The Once and Future City review - out of Manhattan's shadow

For visitors to New York, it’s all about Manhattan, its 23 square miles of skyscraper-encrusted granite instantly familiar, its many landmarks – enshrined in movies and music – must-sees on the itinerary of first-time tourists. The other...

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Good Posture review - charming coming of age comedy

Dolly Wells’ directorial debut employs her best friend Emily Mortimer as reclusive writer Julia Price, having paired up previously in a TV satire of their professionally uneven relationship, Doll and Em. Mortimer cameos this time, as posh...

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Jessye Norman, 1945-2019

She was recording Carmen in Paris, and the Radio France auditorium was packed with the press, asking such dazzling questions as "have you been up the Eiffel Tower yet?" and "what do you think of the French men?". I thought, given the statuesque...

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Big the Musical - sweet if wildly overstretched

The work isn't finished on Big, if this stage musical of the beloved 1988 Tom Hanks film is ever to, um, make it big. A Broadway flop in 1996 where it was among the last shows directed by the late, much-admired Englishman Mike Ockrent, the material...

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Hustlers review - strip club crime pays

When did Dorothy (Constance Wu) really want to be a stripper? Maybe it’s when she looks with love at Ramona (Jennifer Lopez) during her strutting set piece dance, as she descends to a carpet of cash. If that’s the equivalent of Ray Liotta’s gangster...

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Torch Song, Turbine Theatre review - impressive return for Harvey Fierstein's seminal gay drama

London’s latest theatre opening brings a stirring revival of Harvey Fierstein’s vital gay drama, which premiered as Torch Song Trilogy in New York at the beginning of the 1980s, the playwright himself unforgettable in the lead, before it opened in...

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Falsettos, The Other Palace review - affecting search for the new normal

William Finn and James Lapine’s musical – which combines two linked one-acts, March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland, set in late 1970s/early 1980s New York – picked up Tony Awards in 1992 for its book and score, and was nominated again in...

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DVD: Are You Proud?

Ashley Joiner’s expansive documentary Are You Proud? opens with the testament of a redoubtable nonagenarian remembering his experiences as a gay man in World War II. Though followed by the admission that he had to live his later life as a lie, it’s...

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Napoli, Brooklyn, Park Theatre review - lacking substance

According to their mother, Luda (played by Madeleine Worrall, pictured below), each of the three sisters (pictured top) in Napoli, Brooklyn, bears one of their father’s admirable traits. Tina (Mona Goodwin), the oldest, who left school early to...

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Men in Black: International review - lacklustre sequel missing original stars

The best joke in Men in Black: International happens before the film starts, when the iconic Columbia Pictures lady in a toga whips out a pair of familiar dark glasses. It’s a nifty, witty gag that doesn’t outstay its welcome, which is more than can...

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