Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool

Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool is the film adaptation of a memoir by English actor Peter Turner about his two-year affair with veteran Hollywood actress Gloria Grahame. This movie, starring a luminous Annette Bening opposite the excellent Jamie Bell… Continue Reading →

Gun crazy: Donald Trump and the politics of denial

‘Fortunately somebody else had a gun that was shooting in the opposite direction … otherwise it would have been much worse.’ On Sunday 5 November 2017, 26 people were murdered at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas by… Continue Reading →

Designs on Britain – from Shanks’s Pony to Chopper bikes

If you’ve never visited the Jewish Museum in Camden Town, London, you’re missing out on one of the capital’s best small museums. Following the 2014 exhibition on Abram Games, Designs on Britain celebrates the work of several more Jewish émigré designers… Continue Reading →

Call Me by Your Name

Critics have fallen head over heels for Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me by Your Name. Usually I’d be suspicious of any movie that was being lauded as “ravishing”, “triumphant” and “sublime”, but this time the hype is justified. I saw this… Continue Reading →

BFI London Film Festival 2017: Journey’s End

If you like war movies that are big on spectacle and gung-ho action, with a bit of romance thrown in, then Journey’s End may not be your cup of tea. Set in the trenches of northern France towards the end… Continue Reading →

BFI London Film Festival 2017: Battle of the Sexes

I was looking forward to the BFI London Film Festival screening of Battle of the Sexes, the movie about the 1973 tennis showdown between feminist heroine Billie Jean King and chauvinist jackass Bobby Riggs. I love tennis, I love the… Continue Reading →

The day I met Barry Norman

When I was growing up I used to tell people that my career ambition was to be Barry Norman. At the time, I was a teenage pupil at a north London school for girls; Barry Norman, who died yesterday aged… Continue Reading →

Italian in London and American in Paris

Last week, an Italian waitress in a London branch of Wagamama gave me some advice about learning her native language. “The grammar is hard,” she admitted, “but the vocabulary is easier than English”. As if to prove her point she… Continue Reading →

Billy Joel: boxing clever

Since I got a portable record player for Christmas 2016 I’ve been transported back to the music of my teenage years, when Billy Joel was my doe-eyed, bouffant-haired pop idol. I bought Billy Joel’s fifth album, The Stranger, soon after… Continue Reading →

Great British Menu or great British ego trip?

Great British Menu is rapidly becoming my favourite comedy show on the Great British TV Channel otherwise known as BBC2. Last night, finals week of Great British Menu turned into Great British Blacksmith, as one of the contestants found a… Continue Reading →

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