“Uploaded to the cloud, sounds like heaven”
On the tenth day of Christmas, Black Mirror gave to me…the sweetest romance I’ve seen in ages. Also don’t read on if you haven’t seen it yet.
Time-travelling romances always do it for me and without wanting to give too much away about San Junipero, it is a gorgeous example of the form. It’s also a rare excursion into the (largely) non-sinister for Black Mirror which gives it a welcome change of pace in terms of this third series, indeed across its whole life, and marks it as one of the finest episodes yet.
We open in 1987, in the party town San Junipero where introverted Yorkie, a bespectacled Mackenzie Davis, is making her first forays into club life and soon finds herself swept into the orbit of vibrant Kelly, the wonderful Gugu Mbatha-Raw, with whom she tumbles into a heady affair. As always, nothing is straightforward in this world though, and questions and hints and puzzles and clues point us towards the truth about what this place really is. Continue reading “12 Days of Christmas – Black Mirror 3:4”
“We’re not doing in fucking tights, with whatever those fucking old jock-strap things are called that they wear”
NOW – in the Wings on a World Stage is a behind-the-scenes look at the final instalment of the Bridge Project, a transatlantic theatrical enterprise that saw a partnership between the Old Vic, London, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York and Neal Street Production. Over each of its three years, a single Anglo-American company was brought together to perform classic plays, culminating in a production of Richard III that toured the world for over 200 years.
Led by Kevin Spacey’s Tricky Dicky (very much Frank Underwood in the making) and director Sam Mendes in their first collaboration since the Oscar winning American Beauty, NOW… is still very much a company piece, giving us a glimpse into life on the road not just for the actors but also for all the creatives, it’s fascinating to see the challenges that faced the associate director Bruce Guthrie and his stage management team as this substantial production moved from city to city. Continue reading “DVD Review: NOW – in the Wings on a World Stage”
“I thank God for my humility”
Something of a rarity for me in visiting the final show of a run, here the final iteration of the three year transatlantic Bridge Project this time taking in just the single show, Richard III. The reason I left it so late was mainly because I hadn’t got a huge amount of will to actually go and see it, Propeller’s anarchic and inventive interpretation being so fresh in my mind especially after revisiting it just as this production opened at the Old Vic, and though my Aunty Jean was most keen to see it, by the time I got round to it, it had predictably sold out. Sod’s law dictates that tickets for a couple of shows in the final week emerged last minute but she couldn’t make it, but I snapped up a £15 bargain in the dress circle to go and see what all the fuss was about.
The big selling point of Sam Mendes’ production was clearly Kevin Spacey in the title role and Spacey rises to the challenge to provide the grandest of performances. So much so that I was initially rather turned off by the overemphatic nature of his opening scenes, it felt akin to being hit by a sledgehammer of acting and left me wondering where on earth he was going to go from this grandstanding. Fortunately, he did calm down a bit to allow the depth of his portrayal to emerge: a malevolent spirit but not one born evil, but twisted that way by life and still able to keep a black humour about him, Spacey excelling with a sardonic rapidfire delivery. Continue reading “Review: Richard III, Old Vic”