review structure

Mean Streets, Directed by Martin Scorsese

By Dan Schneider There is a scene in Martin Scorsese’s seminal 1973 film, Mean Streets, that is key to understanding not only the characters that…

American Rust

By Brenda Stones This debut novel comes loaded with accolades; already the book covers and the author’s websites are stashed with tributes: the next Steinbeck,…

Being Cross with Trump

By Luke Douglas-Home You may have seen it at one of the many documentary festivals it has wowed, in Sheffield, Edinburgh, Birmingham or Toronto. You…

Wuthering Heights

By David Birch The tagline of Andrea Arnold’s Wuthering Heights—‘Love is a force of nature’—is almost too good. As a selling-point, it is best not…

Letter from an Unknown Woman

By Timandra Harkness It is a glorious film, but you could not make it now. And that is not just my opinion. My preview screening…

My Name is Khan

By Cheryl Hudson My Name is Khan broke global box office records as the largest grossing Bollywood movie worldwide in its opening weekend, including in…

Hamlet

By Matt Trueman Rory Kinnear’s Hamlet is a marked man; most definitely ‘the observed of all observers’. The Elsinore he inhabits is a surveillance state.…

Alice in Wonderland, directed by Tim Burton

By Dolan Cummings Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland sees Lewis Carroll’s Alice returning to ‘Underland’ at the age of 19, falling down a hole in…

Ilustrado, by Miguel Syjuco

By Mike Jakeman Ilustrado, winner of the 2008 Man Asian Literary Prize and the debut novel by a young Filipino writer, Miguel Syjuco, begins with…

Tosca, ENO, Coliseum, London

By Sarah Boyes Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924) is a notoriously popular composer. Popular, in terms of sheer numbers of admirers during his lifetime and enduring resonance…

Romeo and Juliet, Rose Theatre, London

By Miriam Gillinson A white mist unfurls onstage. Two armies filter forward—it is hard to make them out through the fog—and begin to mime a…

Up in the Air

By Dennis Hayes Jason Reitman’s Up in the Air is one of those rare films that deals with contemporary working life. It focuses on the…

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest

By Angelica Michelis The final part of Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy starts exactly where the second volume has finished: Lisbeth Salander, the plucky and unusual heroine…

The Ghost Writer

By Mark Carrigan Given the likelihood that its director Roman Polanski may never make another film, it is difficult not to approach The Ghost Writer…

The Importance of Being Earnest

By Jane Turner The Importance of Being Earnest was the first and is also sadly, the last play to be performed in the basement of…

The New Old World

By Chris Bickerton Perry Anderson’s The New Old World is a welcome addition to the many books published in recent years on the European Union…

Macbeth

By Matt Trueman Imagine if you could bathe in Macbeth. Or cut it into lines and snort it. What about painting your house Macbeth? ‘OK,’…

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