Begins a week of LATE SHOW’s looking at the future. This programme argues that the 21st century is going to be just like the 14th. For example Alan Minc has argued that there will be no political order at all and areas of countries will be outside state control, run by crime syndicates the modern equivalents of medieval robber barons.
Pure dystopic/apocalyptic 90s mentality. Chaos, drugs, AIDS, Ebola, unifying theories in physics, internet, computer graphics, PC games, early GUIs etc etc and parallels drawn between the world to come and middle ages. Continue reading
Pithy half-hour documentary concerning New German Cinema (when it was on fire), focusing on and featuring interviews with “the big five”: Werner Herzog, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Wim Wenders, Volker Schlöndorff & Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Most notable being the rare interview with a young Herzog, and behind-the-scenes footage of him at work.
Horizon: Eat, Fast and Live Longer
Michael Mosley has set himself a truly ambitious goal: he wants to live longer, stay younger and lose weight in the bargain. And he wants to make as few changes to his life as possible along the way. He discovers the powerful new science behind the ancient idea of fasting, and he thinks he’s found a way of doing it that still allows him to enjoy his food. Michael tests out the science of fasting on himself – with life-changing results.
Making its debut with Romeo and Juliet on 3 December 1978, and concluding nearly seven years later with Titus Andronicus on 27 April 1985, the BBC Television Shakespeare project was the single most ambitious attempt at bringing the Bard of Avon to the small screen, both at the time and to date.
Producer Cedric Messina was already an experienced producer of one-off television Shakespeare presentations, and was thus ideally qualified to present the BBC with a daunting but nonetheless enticingly simple proposition: a series of adaptations, staged specifically for television, of all 36 First Folio plays, plus Pericles (The Two Noble Kinsmen was considered primarily John Fletcher’s work, and the legitimacy of Edward III was still being debated).
The scale of Messina’s proposal, far greater than that of previous multi-part Shakespeare series such as An Age of Kings (BBC, 1960) and Spread of the Eagle (BBC, 1963), required an American partner in order to guarantee access to the US market, deemed essential for the series to recoup its costs. Time-Life Television agreed to participate, but under certain controversial conditions – that the productions be traditional interpretations of the plays in appropriately Shakespearean period costumes and sets, designed to fit a two-and-a-half-hour time slot. Continue reading
Complete 7-part, 290-minute BBC miniseries plus BBC interview – John Le Carre – The Secret Centre
Complex but compelling, this miniseries is based upon one of John Le Carré’s greatest works and serves as a grand summing-up for the late Sir Alec Guinness, one of Britain’s greatest actors. Guinness literally is Smiley: Le Carré said that Guinness served as a template for the character’s cunning and mournful rectitude. In anyone else’s hands, Smiley might have seemed a blank and lifeless character, but Guinness’ matchless ability to play within a scene while seeming to think well beyond it is magnetic. Guinness was the great everyman and underplayer of the generation that gave us such great British Shakespearean actors as Olivier, Richardson, and Gielgud. He’s helped, too, by sharp dialogue lifted almost word-for-word from the book and terrific supporting performances (particularly an entirely silent but amazingly communicative Patrick Stewart, who has a cameo as Karla), which almost entirely obscure the fact that the miniseries largely consists of people sitting in rooms talking. It’s a literate treat that brings to life the gray morality and conflicting loyalties of the Cold War. Be advised: viewers can get lost in the intricate plot if they don’t pay close attention.
– Nick Sambides, Jr. Continue reading
From the DVD case:
Charlotte Coleman stars as Jess, the adopted daughter of a strict evangelist played by Geraldine McEwan. With an upbringing spent learning the bible and praying for ‘heathens in hot countries’ she unnerves both classmates and teachers when she begins school. Later in life she meets Melanie and friendship soon turns to passion. When her mother and the local pastor learn the truth about their relationship they take extreme measures to save her from these ‘unnatural lusts’.
This highly acclaimed production was adapted by Jeanette Winterson from her own best-selling novel and won three BAFTAs including Best Serial and Best Actress. Continue reading
John Simm stars in this adaptation of Dostoyevsky’s tragic masterpiece – a profound drama of redemption and a thrilling detective story of the soul. Continue reading