fri 25/05/2018

Northern Ireland

Come Home, BBC One review - a drama of family disintegration, divided loyalties

A woman walks out on her husband and their three kids – two teens, one five-year-old - after 19 years of marriage. She doesn’t want custody. What could be so wrong with the man that she’s driven to such drastic action? Eleven months later, Greg (...

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Derry Girls, Channel 4 review – bring on series two!

When first announced, Derry Girls seemed a strange prospect. Derry during The Troubles wasn’t an obvious choice for a sitcom; neither was writer Lisa McGee, whose only previous comedy outing London Irish was slammed for negative...

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Art UK, Art of the Nation review - public art in a private space

Art fairs are vaguely promiscuous. So much art, so many galleries, so very many curators. They’re a glut for the eye yet curiously anodyne — the ranks of white cubicles could belong to a jobs fair, except there’s a Miró round the corner. And it’s...

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66 Days, BBC Four review - Bobby Sands strikes again

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

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The End of Hope, Soho Theatre review - initially bold but not quite enough

In David Ireland's new hour-long two-hander – a co-production between Soho Theatre and west London's Orange Tree – two strangers, Janet and Dermot, meet for a casual hook-up arranged over the internet. The glitch, or at least...

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DVD: Every Picture Tells a Story

James Scott’s filmography is wide-ranging, including the 1982 short film A Shocking Accident, based on the Graham Greene story, which won an Academy Award the following year, and other works on social questions. But these documentaries, several...

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DVD/Blu-ray: The Crying Game

Does a review of a 25-year-old film need a spoiler alert? Much of the success of The Crying Game – its 1992 release earned both six Oscar nominations and huge box office returns (although not enough to save its producers from bankruptcy) – is...

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My Mother and Other Strangers, BBC One

This new wartime drama launched on Remembrance Sunday is a curio. The setting of My Mother and Other Strangers is rural Northern Ireland in 1943, where it’s green and wet and a long way from the conflict. Into the midst of the fictional Moybeg on...

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The Nest, Young Vic

Do we see enough in the UK of continental European drama in translation? No. Is what we actually get the best? Probably not in the case of popular German playwright Franz Xaver Kroetz's The Nest. Still, it's rendered into pithy, convincing...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: The Undertones

Although the reformed Undertones, with Paul McLoone replacing original singer Feargal Sharkey, have been a popular live draw since 1999, John Peel’s anointing of “Teenage Kicks” from their debut EP as his favourite recording suggests this is what...

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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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Strange and Familiar, Barbican

The Barbican has built a steady reputation for almost unclassifiable large-scale art exhibitions, particularly in architecture, design and photography: they have been underestimated pioneers, often working in areas themselves under-scrutinised. Thus...

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