mon 24/06/2019

war on terror

Deep State, Series 2, Fox review - covert conspiracies in Africa

Last year’s first season of Deep State featured cloak and dagger exploitations of chaos in the Middle East by the capitalist West and its intelligence services. Judging by its opening episode, this second iteration is about to do something similar,...

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On Her Shoulders review - half-life of a campaigner

In September 2014, after three months of captivity, Nadia Murad escaped ISIS control in Mosul, Iraq. Since then, she has dedicated her life to travelling the world and telling everyone who will listen about the plight suffered by her Yazidi people,...

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Pity, Royal Court review - whacked-out and wearing

The apocalypse arrives as a series of collegiate sketches in the aptly-named Pity, the Rory Mullarkey play that may well prompt sympathy for audiences who unwittingly find themselves in attendance. Less provocative by far than this same writer's...

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Sicario: Day of the Soldado review - violent, explosive and nihilistic thriller

The issue of immigrants being smuggled across the Mexican border into the USA is currently live and inflammatory, and this second instalment of the feds-versus-drugs cartels saga hurls us right into the centre of it. This explosive thriller is...

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Building the Wall, Park Theatre review - the nature of nightmare

Writer Robert Schenkkan’s Building the Wall imagines modern America in the not-too-distant future. The date is 22nd November 2019 and following an attack on Times Square in which 17 people were killed, martial law has been imposed. Demands for...

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The Deminer review - life on the edge in Iraq

Major Fakhir is a deminer, responsible for disarming hundreds of mines around Mosul every week. His American counterparts know him by a different title: Crazy Fakhir, a man who rides the edge of his luck, constantly in imminent danger. Yet to him,...

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Below the Surface, Series Finale, BBC Four review - tense and twisty to the bitter end

In the previous couple of episodes, some light began to seep into the subterranean gloom of the Copenhagen kidnappers, or at any rate onto their identities and motivations. The military theme with which Below the Surface opened, with Philip Norgaard...

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Lisa Halliday: Asymmetry review - unconventional and brilliant

Lisa Halliday’s striking debut novel consists of three parts. The first follows the blooming relationship between Alice and Ezra (respectively an Assistant Editor and a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer) in New York; the middle section comprises a...

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Ugly Lies the Bone, National Theatre

Theatre increasingly uses digital delights to enhance audience enjoyment. And you can easily see why. Visual effects that mimic the experience of plunging into virtual reality inject a much-needed wow factor into otherwise quite mundane stories. And...

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Homeland, Series 6, Channel 4

The big surprise of this new-season opener of Homeland was that black ops specialist Peter Quinn (Rupert Friend) didn't die at the end of series 5 after all, despite the fact that we last saw him apparently moribund in his hospital bed, having...

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Snowden

As an old Sixties lefty brought up on paranoia-infused thrillers like The Parallax View or All the President's Men, Oliver Stone loves ripping open great American conspiracies. However, in contrast to his earlier labyrinthine epics Nixon and JFK,...

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Conspiracy Files: The Trump Dossier, BBC Two

So we’re less than a week away from America’s choice. Many in the States have presented it as a kind of Sophie’s Choice – an unbearable outcome no matter who they choose. On the one hand they have a racist, sexist, braggart bully who has been named...

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