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London Film Festival 2019 – Bad Education

Writer: Mike Makowsky Director: Cory Finley Reviewer: Maryam Philpott Thinking about your teachers as real people and considering what they really got up to at school is a strange concept so vested are they with institutional and educative authority. Having wives, husbands and hobbies is one thing, but imagine them committing major misdeeds right under your nose. Cory Finley’s new ...

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Shukshin’s Stories – Barbican Theatre, London

Writer: Vasiliy Shukshin  Director: Alvis Hermanis Reviewer: Gus Mitchell Russia is not a country primarily known for its humour. Even its most famous ‘comic’ playwright (Chekhov) wrote primarily of wasted and frustrated lives, lost, lonely individuals, and the universal pity of our self-delusions. It was with great interest and a slight wariness, then, that I sat down for Shukshin’s Stories, ...

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The Lovely Bones – Theatre Royal, Norwich

Writer: Alice Sebold Adaptor: Bryony Lavery Director:  Melly Still Reviewer: Lu Greer The Lovely Bones novel tells the story of a teenage girl, Susie Salmon, who is abducted and murdered in brutal fashion, and who also happens to be the narrator of the story. Prioritising seeing justice served over making it to ‘heaven’ after her death Susie sticks around in ...

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London Film Festival 2019 – Le Mans ’66

Writers: Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth, Jason Keller and James Mangold Director: James Mangold Reviewer: Richard Maguire Gaskets blow, brakes fail and loyalties are tested in this exciting history of how Ford pitched itself against Ferrari at the 1966 Le Mans, the 24-hour sports car race. Featuring heavyweights Matt Damon and Christian Bale, Le Mans ’66 has all the makings of ...

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London Film Festival 2019 -Waiting for the Barbarians

Writer: J.M. Coetzee Director: Ciro Guerra Reviewer: Maryam Philpott Humans have always been afraid of otherness, somewhere beyond the frontier there are wild creatures waiting to ensnare us. Just who are the monsters is a concept that fills literature and popular culture, from Orwell and Atwood to Dr Who and now J.M. Coetzee. The notion that true barbarism is the ...

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London Film Festival 2019 – The Song of Names

Writer: Jeffrey Caine Director: François Girard Reviewer: Richard Maguire In the 1990s, François Girard directed and co-wrote Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould, a game changer for both biopics and movies about music. In comparison his new film, The Song of Names, based on the novel by Norman Lebrecht, lacks verve and experimentation. Its story of a man trying ...

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London Film Festival 2019 – The Two Popes

Writer:  Anthony McCarten Director: Fernando Meirelles Reviewer: Maryam Philpott Jonathan Pryce has rather cornered the market in famous Argentinians, where he was once Juan Peron to Madonna’s Evita, now he’s playing the most powerful man in religion, the Pope in Fernando Meirelles’ new film The Two Popes. Written by Anthony McCarten based on his own play from 2017, the movie ...

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The Entertainer – Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton

Writer: John Osborne Director: Sean O’Connor Reviewer: James Garrington The country is in turmoil. The people are divided, with strong views on both sides of the argument. Parliament is split with some fervent and vocal opposition to the Government’s plans. The Rice household is equally divided – Billy Rice gets all of his news from The Sun and rants constantly ...

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