mon 25/05/2020

Spain

Camino Skies review - NZ documentary brings no surprises

A documentary about six middle-aged Antipodeans, four women and two men, walking the 500 mile pilgrims’ path through France and Spain to the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela sounds uplifting, inspiring, even fun. Just the ticket, perhaps, when...

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Camarón: The Film, Netflix review – the life story of an influential and passionate cantaor

The scenes at flamenco legend Camarón de la Isla’s chaotic, thronged funeral which open this lovingly-made documentary give some idea of the singer’s popularity and the shock at his death at the age of just 41 in 1992. He began singing...

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The Platform review - timely, violent and effective

Horror has always been a good vehicle for satire, from John Carpenter’s They Live to Jordan Peele’s Get Out. Some metaphors opt for the subtle precision of a surgical knife, and others the hit you over the head. The Platform on Netflix is the latter...

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Fire Will Come review - slow-burning Spanish beauty

This lovely, contemplative Cannes prize-winner has something to teach us in testing times. Filmed in director Oliver Laxe’s grandparents’ Galician village, it observes convicted arsonist Amador’s return from jail to the fire-prone landscape he’s...

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Joanna Trollope: Mum & Dad review - redemption in Spain

In common with her literary forebear, Joanna Trollope’s light hand refrains from the introverted angst so common in contemporary novels. Her immensely readable, witty renderings of English middle-class life have entertained and enlightened over...

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Albert Costa: The Bilingual Brain review – double-talking heads and what they tell us

Those of us who have to toil and sweat with other languages often feel a twinge of envy when we meet truly bilingual folk. That ability to switch codes, seemingly without any fuss, must confer so many benefits. More than ever, bilingualism blossoms...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Coates, Dvořák, Martinů, Peñalosa

 Eric Coates: Orchestral Works, Vol. 1 BBC Philharmonic/John Wilson (Chandos)One reason to love Eric Coates and his music is discovering that his compositional routine involved waiting “until he was properly dressed in the morning, complete...

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Carmen, Welsh National Opera review - intermittent brilliance in a gloomy, unclear environment

You can love Carmen as much as you like (as much as I do, for instance), and still have a certain sympathy for the poor director who has to find something new to say about a work so anchored in a particular style and place. For all its musical and...

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Pain and Glory review - masterful meditation on age and art

The Almodovar who made his name as an all-out provocateur in the Eighties considers that wild art’s becalmed far side, in this quietly wonderful meditation on where it’s left him. Antonio Banderas leads familiar faces from throughout his career with...

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Don Giovanni, Longborough Festival Opera review - Mozart in the urinal

One of the features of the converted barn that forms the theatre at Longborough is a trio of statues that tops the front pediment of the building: Wagner, flanked by Verdi on the right and Mozart on the left. No one could question Wagner:...

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Ballet Flamenco Sara Baras, Sadler's Wells review - storming opening to flamenco festival

Crowned queen of the percussive heel and the trouser suit, Sara Baras has the audience on its feet long before the final number of her show Sombras (Shadows). The Spanish superstar is a familiar presence at Sadler’s Wells, having fronted its annual...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Jeanette

Jeanette’s “Porque Te Vas” is a prime example of a type of Europop which – beyond a brief flirtation around 1968 to 1971: think Clodagh Rogers – Britain had little time for. It’s not quite schlager, but still has the tell-tale martial rhythm. The...

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