‘I LOVE ME’
Stevie Wonder on an extraordinary life in music
Harry in Vegas update
A close shave with fame
Film of a family haunting
Berberian Sound System
Alexis Petridis’s verdict
Lost in Showbiz After Harry’s Naked Romp, oﬀers for the wayward prince are ﬂooding in. Will he opt for porno stardom or join the Chippendales? By Alexis Petridis
2 The Guardian 31.08.12
Harry’s dream job? Fronting the Chippendales … trousers optional
Sharon Osbourne informed TV viewers that Harry possessed a rare wit
down and Dark Side of the Moon playing, or – as was the case with a similarly fuelled acquaintance of Lost in Showbiz during a stag weekend in Amsterdam – continually interrupted proceedings by alternately bellowing “I’M CLINGING ON TO SANITY BY MY FINGERNAILS” and howling like a wolf. Furthermore, Lost in Showbiz is impressed to the point of awe by the notion that there were people present, tripping on powerful psychedelics, at the exact moment the third in line to the British throne decided to show his penis to everybody. It can’t think of circumstances more likely to deliver a catastrophic blow to a psyche undergoing an intense hallucinogenic experience. If they are not currently being attended to in a psychiatric unit as a result – their faces locked into a horriﬁed grimace, their voices mute save for the terrible, bloodcurdling
scream they let out whenever they hear Ozric Tentacles’ Fetch Me the Pongmaster – it can only salute their sheer mental fortitude. Here, surely, are what Allen Ginsberg would have called the best minds of our generation: people with brains of purest titanium, capable of withstanding the worst the world can throw at them. But let us move from the event itself to the aftermath. Lost in Showbiz is delighted to note that for every voice carping about royal duty, there are many who not merely support the Naked Romp, but feel it is the key that unlocks a glittering future for the wayward prince: when life hands you lemons, you go to the fully stocked wet bar in your two-storey, 5,829 sq ft, three-bedroom suite and make lemonade. It applauds the optimism of Las Vegas’s self-styled “Diamonds in the Buﬀ ”, the Chippendales, who
ORIGINAL CHIPPENDALES PHOTOGRAPH: REX FEATURES
his week, like the ruminant mammal enjoying a bolus of regurgitated food, Lost in Showbiz fears it must retrace the footsteps taken by Hadley Freeman in this column last week and lead you back to Room 2401 of Las Vegas’s Wynn Encore resort. You are doubtless familiar with its two-storey, 5,829 sq ft, three-masterbedroom interior – the 72in ﬂat-screen television, the walls padded with mohair to absorb sound, something mysteriously described as “privacy controls”, which, under the circumstances, they might want to send someone from maintenance up to have a look at – but news of what took place in its opulent surroundings during Prince Harry’s recent Naked Romp just keeps on coming. First, let us examine the report – from our old friend An Anonymous Source on showbiz website Radar Online – that the spirit of the late Hunter S Thompson was unexpectedly abroad once more in Sin City that fateful evening. Apparently, among the prince’s new-found American friends were some people on drugs. Thus far, the papers seem to have concentrated on the angle that “some were doing cocaine”. Lost in Showbiz, however, is far more intrigued by the suggestion that others had ingested psilocybin, or, as AA Source put it, were “rolling on ’shrooms”. Lost in Showbiz wonders if it was one of them who was operating the cameraphone that US media claim was ﬁlming His Naked Romp, and if the reason footage has yet to surface is that it consists entirely of another ’shroomuser delightedly making the suite’s touch-screen-operated curtains open and close for 45 minutes. It also likes the idea that some members of the party may have spent the Naked Romp trying to commandeer the stereo in order to turn oﬀ Essential R&B 2012 and put on Ozric Tentacles’ Fetch Me the Pongmaster, suggesting they all stop playing strip billiards and watch The Wizard of Oz with the sound turned
On the web Participate in these important debates guardian.co.uk/lostinshowbiz
have apparently invited Prince Harry to join them onstage in their custom-designed theatre complex with adjacent boutique “hosting a variety of items that appeal to women” (neon vibrating crotchless panties, $19.95). Its applause turns to a veritable standing ovation when it thinks of Steven Hirsch, founder and co-chairman of a company called Vivid Entertainment, who swiftly dispatched a letter to Clarence House, oﬀering Harry not merely $10m, but “the opportunity to truly become the coolest prince of all time, by starring in a fun, sexy, bigbudget adult ﬁlm called The Trouble with Harry”. “We assure you the sex will be wellscripted,” he added, as if Harry might expect anything other than auteur ﬁlm-making and high quality mise-enscene from the company behind Big Tit Jack Oﬀ, The Anal Intern and the educational Penny Flame’s Expert Guide to Hand Jobs. There are voices who will doubtless suggest that any situation that commences with you taking all your clothes oﬀ in a room full of people on drugs and ends with an oﬀer to make a celebrity porno must, by default, involve some loss of dignity. Lost in Showbiz prefers to view said situation as an unexpected platform on which the protagonist’s manifold qualities can come to light. For proof, let us ﬁnally turn to Sharon Osbourne, who used a discussion on American television to inform viewers that Harry was in possession of a rare wit, which she encountered during a visit to Buckingham Palace: “I said to him, would you watch my bag while I go to the loo. And he said: ‘Fuck oﬀ.’ How fabulous. What a fabulous answer in jest.” What a week: hallucinogenic drugs, porn, neon vibrating crotchless panties, the kind of repartee unheard since The Vicious Circle drifted apart. Exhausted, but wide-eyed with wonder, Lost in Showbiz plaintively asks: where will it all end? Who among us can dare to predict where the Naked Romp will lead us next?
Shame! We’ve let Olympic glory eclipse our neglected celebs
Kerry Katona: no gold medal for her disclosures
A lone voice of sanity in a world of madness, Lost in Showbiz professes itself disappointed with Britain this summer. What a let-down this country has proved: capriciously disregarding the activities of the nation’s celebrities in order to gawp like mindless idiots at Olympians and Paralympians just because they are performing almost superhuman feats of skill, endurance and bravery. Are the British really that ﬂighty? Is that all it takes to distract attention from the latest important updates about Alex “The Reidinator” Reid’s engagement to former Celebrity Big Brother Broth star Chantelle Houghton? It “strained” thanks to her is apparently appare inability to come to terms with his cross-dressing alter ego “Roxanne”, yet cross-dre seems more interested in the country coun watching Oscar Pistorius, a man who, as far as LiS L can tell, doesn’t have any cross-dressing alter ego to speak of. cross-d Do we really believe these Olympians are superior to, say, Olym ance of Kym Marsh and former ﬁa Hollyoaks star Jamie Lomas, Ho who spent his stag night handcuﬀed to a dwarf dressed as Mr T? Let’s see how many gold medals Jessica wins while handcuﬀed to a Ennis win as Mr T before we start dwarf dressed dre where the real talent lies. talking about ab And does no one have any interest in magazine’s brilliant scoop about OK! maga relationship with Jonny Kerry Katona’s Kat KERRY AND JONNY TALK Laidler? K WEDDINGS AND BABIES screams the WEDDIN headline, which turns out to refer to headline in her column reading: two sentences sente totally just friends – I bet the “We’re to headlines will be that I’m getting headline or I want a baby, you know married o are like.” This, my friends, what people peo real gold: are we so stupeﬁed by is the rea
the interminable parade of remarkable human achievement on our screens that we’ve forgotten what quality journalism is? Priorities, people! The ratings for the new series of The X Factor are the lowest in the show’s six-year history, allowing Bradley Wiggins to crow “the Olympics, everywhere you went the country was on a high … then you see The X Factor and it’s like: ‘Oh God, everybody has got to put up with that all winter now’.” A few weeks ago, even this column turned quisling in the hands of Peter Robinson, spouting some guﬀ about how athletes represented “a whole new celebrity stratum”. LiS can only apologise and assure you that normal service is resumed: it is meaningless stories about bizarre hollow orange carapaces, baﬄingly elevated to stardom for no discernible reason, from here on in. Thank God the ﬁghtback ﬁnally seems to have begun in earnest. The scripted reality show stars and former X Factor ﬁnalists are massing, the spirit of D-day in their hearts, a rousing chorus of We Shall Not Be Moved on their lips, their spirits bolstered by the front cover of yesterday’s Sun, which rightly chose to ignore the Paralympics opening ceremony in favour of the real headline news that Cheryl Cole had sustained a nosebleed in Los Angeles. And what resources this hastily formed army has at its disposal! LiS can barely type, so thrilled is it to disclose what’s coming up. A new television series in which Jedward not only “show funny YouTube clips from around the world” but also, they proudly announce, wear “clothes that no one has seen us wear before”! My Fair Kerry, a “scripted comedy reality show” featuring “crazy antics” as David Gest attempts to teach the former Atomic Kitten star etiquette! The scintillating rumour that former The Only Way is Essex star Lauren Goodger is to star in the next series of Dancing on Ice! LiS gazes awestruck at this array of glittering jewels: what price the trivial diversions of the Olympic Park now?
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Hi, Noah! What’s it like in Belfast? I’m in Brighton. (1) Ah sorry. For the surﬁng? Not all Aussies surf. You’ve lived over here for ages. Almost 17 years. Australia feels quite foreign to me now. It’s not so much that the place has changed but it’s a diﬀerent era. You’re nostalgic for that. You’re a patron (2) of this year’s Australian ﬁlm festival. What do your duties involve? Not much, really. Having my name on it, for whatever that’s worth, and occasionally talking to people like yourself. rself. I’m doing it out of some sort of patriotic triotic sense of duty. It’s a great festival and they’re all doing it voluntarily. And d the industry is important. It’s a really good training ground, partly because the he budgets are small, so they have to o rely on a decent script and acting and plotting rather than throwing a bunch h of special eﬀects at it. Do you feel like a elder statesman n? I felt old. Being an ambassador isn’t n’t a title I’m particularly comfortable with because I’m not generally a diplomatic matic personality type. There seems to be a bit of a grisly new wave of Aussie cinema (3). Yeah, that’s probably a generational nal thing. It’s like when, say, Lock Stock ock came out here, everyone wanted to make East End gangster ﬁlms, and d one of the deﬁnitive ﬁlms for those Ausussies is Chopper. And undoubtedly y those scripts are a reﬂection of a cerertain aspect of Australia. Prior to that hat there was an era of big landscapess and horses. Is it right that before your ﬁrst ﬁlms ms (4), you wanted to join the army? That was my one real ambition, and nd I got it from reading war comics. But ut that idea faded when I became a teen een and I realised I didn’t really like getting etting up early and being told what to do. o.
PHOTOGRAPH REX FEATURES
And you play music (5) and paint, too. I do lots of diﬀerent things but I don’t on’t do them with any great ambition or plan. Just in the past couple of years ars I’ve tried to be a bit more serious. But your music is quite successful. ul. It depends how you deﬁne success. s. If it’s by making money, it’s very
30 minutes with ... Noah Taylor The actor on being an Aussie in Brighton, his love of country and western and being mistaken for Prince
By Catherine Shoard
unsuccessful but it’s almost impossible to make money from music unless you are a chart-topping global sensation or a super-cute boy band, or their manager, and you have a good line in ring tones. Your song Fuck You (6) is pretty catchy. Do you ever hear people singing it? I never have, it’s a shame. I had my ﬁrst singalong experience the other night – I did a cover of Like a Virgin and these Aussie girls joined in. So I felt like a genuine pub entertainer. It was good to have a singalong. You once said that there are four types of songs: the falling in love song; the don’tt love me song; you don son the it’s all over song; and the I want to t hop in your pants song. What’s your yo favourite? Everyone likes falling in love songs best. b est. But very chirpy love songs if you’re devastated are generally like country and unwelcome. I really li because they’re comwestern songs becaus masterpieces. Country plete literary masterp has a real discipline. Do you get recognised recognise a lot? overestimating my place in the You’ve overestimatin world. A few people tthink I’m Ben Mendelsohn (7). I was mistaken for Prince once in Africa w when I had a moustache. Did you correct corre them? I felt it wa was the right thing to do. So Sometimes someone will wil come up to me and say sa “Tomb Raider” (8) always (8),, which w makes make me feel good. Most Mos people are pleasant and I try to plea be pleasant back. I’ve p occasionally gone up occ to ssomeone and if they’ve been an the arsehole, it really ars ruins rui their work for you. you I almost met Lou Lo Reed once and I decided not to de about abo ﬁve seconds before. befo I would hate not to t be able to listen to his records any more. m It’s your birthday next week (9): can we get you a gift gi ? Cash is always alway good. As much as you like; I’m I’ not fussed.
Foot notes (1) Adopted hometown. Nick Cave is a neighbour. Was in Belfast shooting The Double. (2) The other is Geoﬀrey Rush; they played David Helfgott young and old in Shine. (3) Snowtown, Animal Kingdom, Wolf Creek, Sleeping Beauty etc. (4) The Year My Voice Broke, Flirting. (5) He’s been in loads of bands, and currently fronts Noah Taylor and the Sloppy Boys. (6) From his Live Free or Die!!! album. (7) Worked with Taylor in The New World. (8) Taylor played a computer geek. (9) 4 September; he’ll be 43.
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6 The Guardian 31.08.12
ll right, mate?” chirrups Stevie Wonder in a mockney accent last tried by Dick Van Dyke. He is tired, hardly surprising given it is 2.30am where he lives in California, but that doesn’t stop him from acting his usual playful self. Nor does it prevent him from talking at length about his 50-year career, and the events that shaped it. He’s not one to hold back. Before long, he is vividly remembering the car crash in which he nearly lost his life. It was 1973, and the sedan in which he was travelling careened into a truck. His wounds were severe. “It was on 6 August that I almost died in that car accident,” he recalls. It was a key date for another reason. “It was also on 6 August – 1988 – that my son Kwame was born. Life is funny.” Does the crash remain the signal event of his life? “It is signiﬁcant,” he replies, and it’s a typical Wonder response, “but I was blessed to come out of it. God gave me life to continue to do things that I would never have done.” Principal among these was the electriﬁcation of modern soul that he eﬀected on his extraordinary series of 70s albums. They have exerted a tremendous inﬂuence on musicians, from Michael Jackson and Prince in the 80s to rapper Drake and this year’s most lauded new R&B star, Frank Ocean. “Yeah, I like Frank,” says Wonder, who sang the hook from Ocean’s No Church In The Wild to the Odd Future sensation when he met him at a party recently. The feeling is mutual: reviews of Ocean’s 2012 album, Channel Orange, drew comparisons with Wonder’s music at its most expansive. After being consigned to MOR-soul hell following the likes of I Just Called To Say I Loved You, Wonder – who next week headlines Bestival – is hip again. Is there anybody who doesn’t like him? “Heh,” he chuckles, then pauses. “Well, there are those. But we don’t like to think about that.” No, Wonder-haters are few. Maybe he’s thinking of his early days. In Where Did Our Love Go?, a history of Motown, Nelson George noted the jealousy among staﬀers towards the 12-year-old-genius, even if detractors were soon silenced by his fabulous run of mainly self-penned hits: Uptight (Everything’s Alright), For Once In My Life, My Cherie Amour and Signed, Sealed, Delivered. In 1971, he released the transitional Where I’m Coming From, which along with Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On was the ﬁrst serious album from a label accustomed to singles. It was a brave
‘TIME IS LONG BUT LIFE IS SHORT’
He has survived car crashes, death threats and 50 years in the music industry. Ahead of his Bestival show, soul legend Stevie Wonder talks about Motown, Jacko and Winehouse to Paul Lester
departure from the Motown sound, with forays into psychedelia, baroque pop and folk-inﬂected soul. “I had fun doing that album with [ex-wife] Syreeta,” he says. “Berry [Gordy, Motown boss] said: ‘Do your thing.’” He recalls writing the song If You Really Love Me at the apartment of Laura Nyro, no stranger herself to the startling chord sequence. Fellow Motown songwriter Smokey Robinson, however, was unimpressed with his new direction after he saw Wonder on comedian Flip Wilson’s TV show. “I got a call from Smokey and he says: ‘I didn’t like your choice of material. I think it’s really ridiculous.’ I said: ‘I don’t give a “uh” what you think, or what anyone thinks!’ That was my growing-up moment at Motown.” Hooking up with Malcolm Cecil and Robert Margouleﬀ of electronic duo Tonto’s Expanding Headband, Wonder pursued a radical synthesised context for his new soul vision. His purple streak continued with 1972’s Music of My Mind and Talking Book, 1973’s Innervisions, 1974’s Fulﬁllingness’ First Finale, culminating in 1976’s doubleLP (plus additional EP) treasure trove Songs In The Key Of Life. With their dazzling melodies and blend of gritty politicised funk and elegant ballads, these albums appealed to rock and soul fans alike. He overreached himself on 1979’s Journey Through The Secret Life Of Plants, a double concept album full of
‘I’m no better than the next person’ … Wonder; (below) in 1970 Photograph by Eamonn McCabe for the Guardian
new age noodling, but he redeemed himself, critically and commercially, with 1980’s Hotter Than July. And if his recordings since have been patchily received, there is consensus among music lovers that his golden age lasted longer than anyone’s, Bob Dylan and the Beatles included. Wonder is adamant that his heyday of exploratory music-making is not over, despite the fact that his last album, A Time to Love, was issued in 2005. “I’m still experimenting,” he enthuses. “There’s a new instrument I’m learning to play called the harpejji. It’s between a piano and a guitar. I’m writing really diﬀerent songs with it – I have so many. The question is, will they outlive me? Time is long but life is short.” Does Wonder, who has just turned 62, have a growing sense of his mortality? “I don’t feel it,” he says of time’s marching. “I know it for a fact.” He feels a pressing need to achieve in non-musical spheres, and digresses to discuss gun crime, a subject on which he has been outspoken. “I’m concerned about how accessible guns are,” he says. Is he referring to the “Batman shootings” in Colorado? “No, I’m talking about in the hood,” he replies. “That [Colorado] was also very sad, but this is an occurrence almost every week in various cities. But no politician wants to confront it. The right to bear arms? What about the right to live?” Does he fear what happened to John Lennon could happen to him? “I’ve had threats,” he says, “but I don’t put that energy out there because that’s just craziness.” be b Can he feel the same connection to “the street” that he did in the 70s when “t he penned sociopolitical anthems such as Living For The City? “Of course,” he exclaims. “I travel and do stuﬀ.” an What’s it like when he and his entourage sweep through town? en “I just focus on what I’m doing,” he says. “If fans take pictures ... Every time I think about getting Ev annoyed I remember how blessed an I’ve been to have people who have I’v followed my career.” fo Is he in touch with the young man who wrote, say, Superstition? w “Oh yeah,” he replies, breezily. “I listen to him. And I make sure I feel the lis same way still.” sa Many of his best-loved songs were Nixon-era rebukes. These days, he supN ports the president. What is his view of po rappers such as Jay-Z, said to be turnra ing against “B-Rock”? in “Well,” he sighs, striking a rare note of antipathy, “those ra
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who have turned against him, it’s because they’re ignorant or it doesn’t serve their own interest, which probably has to do with money. But the reality is, your money is only as good as you’re able to help others with it.” Even before his accident, when his music was at its most supersonically joyous, Wonder spoke in dread tones of an apocalyptic future, and of the ominous present presaging it. “It’s the last days of life, of beauty,” he declared, referring darkly to “all the horrors and hypocrisy in the world”. After the crash he became increasingly aﬃrmative. But how do these times compare? Is he more optimistic now? “I’m always optimistic, but the world isn’t. People need to make a jump to a place of positivity but they put it all on one person to make it happen,” he says. “It takes everybody. And the mindset has to be diﬀerent. I mean, how do we have, in 2012, racism in the world?” Did he assume that racism would be obliterated? “It can’t be obliterated until people confront the demon in the spirit,” he says. No wonder one of his current roles is as a Messenger of Peace for the United Nations. “You need to put your heart into making a diﬀerence,” he says, proposing “an end to poverty, starvation, racism and illiteracy and ﬁnding cures for cancer and Aids” as just some of the jobs that need doing. Wonder mentions “the demon in the spirit”. How has he managed to endure when his revolutionary soul peers – Marvin, Sly Stone, James Brown – succumbed to torment and temptation? “First of all,” he stresses, “I’m no
8 The Guardian 31.08.12
Clockwise from top: recording We Are The World for USA for Africa with Lionel Richie, Daryl Hall, Quincy Jones and Paul Simon, 1985; with Barack Obama at the White House, 2009; in the early 60s
PHOTOGRAPHS AP; DAVID REDFERN; GETTY IMAGES
Bestival Follow all the action at this summer’s biggest festival on the Isle of Wight guardian.co.uk/music
better than the next person. But I’ve never had a desire to do drugs. When I was 21 I smoked marijuana, and I didn’t like the way it made me feel. When I woke up the next morning I felt like I’d lost part of my brain.” Wonder has also seen the passing of younger talents: Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Amy Winehouse ... “It’s been a heartbreak,” he says. “Obviously I knew Michael.” In 2009 he broke down during a performance of Jackson’s The Way You Make Me Feel. “I knew Whitney, too, and I understand Amy came to my concert in England a couple of years ago. I was thinking about us doing a duet – an old Marvin and Mary Wells song called Once Upon A Time. It would have been amazing.” Had he met Winehouse, would he have oﬀered her words of wisdom, or
would there have been no point? “There’s always a point,” he says. Wonder has never gone oﬀ the rails, although when I ask whether a movie version of his life would be a drama, a comedy or a tragedy, he says: “All of the above.” Does he ever consider that it’s his “disadvantages” – being born blind and black – that have made him what he is? “Do you know, it’s funny,” he starts, “but I never thought of being blind as a disadvantage, and I never thought of being black as a disadvantage. I am what I am. I love me! And I don’t mean that egotistically – I love that God has allowed me to take whatever it was that I had and to make something out of it.” Does he never allow himself an egotistical moment to survey his career? “Nah,” he says, “that’s a waste of time. I enjoy listening to the stuﬀ I’ve done, but that’s it.” Is he a genius? “No,” he says, “I was just blessed to have ideas. The genius in me is God – it’s the God in me coming out.” This summer, he met the Queen after performing at the jubilee concert in London. “She was born under the same astrological sign as me: Taurus,” he marvels. “It was wonderful meeting her.” When I suggest that, if anyone should have been bowing and scraping, it was the one who, by accident of birth, acquired enormous status and wealth, not the one who, by sheer hard graft, changed the course of popular culture, he disagrees. “That’s because you don’t believe in the power and the spirit that is intangible but is all around us,” he mildly scolds. “There has to be a higher energy power.” Nevertheless, Wonder is aware of his impact, and of those who have picked up his progressive soul baton, such as Ocean. Was he surprised that there could, in 2012, be a furore at the revelation that a rapper might be gay? “I think honestly, some people who think they’re gay, they’re confused,” he says. “People can misconstrue closeness for love. People can feel connected, they bond. I’m not saying all [gay people are confused]. Some people have a desire to be with the same sex. But that’s them.” In 1974, US rock critic Robert Christgau described Wonder as “a sainted fool”. He wrote: “I’m not saying he’s a complete fool; in fact, I’m not saying he isn’t a genius. But you can’t deny that if you were to turn on a phone-in station and hear Stevie rapping about divine vibrations and universal brotherhood ... you would not be impressed with his intellectual
‘I didn’t like the way marijuana made me feel, as if I’d lost part of my brain’
discernment.” Certainly, with Wonder, you have to suspend your cynicism. But he has to contend with being narrowcast still. “I’ve never said I was a soul artist or an R&B artist,” he responds when I venture that the music he made in the 70s was a soul version of progressive rock. “They’re just labels. When you’re soul it means black, when you’re pop it means white. That’s bullshit. If it’s good, it’s good. It’s like that old Jerry Reed song: ‘When you’re hot, you’re hot, when you’re not, you’re not.’”
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ven with a new ﬁlm to sell, Guy Maddin is not your standard-issue eager-toplease director. “So many people are baﬄed,” he says, with well-practised irony. “The movie will be crystal-clear upon your third viewing.” This is Keyhole, Maddin’s ninth full-length ﬁlm since 1988; and against all the odds it’s secured a theatrical release in the UK. Most of Maddin’s work simply doesn’t get to Britain, so resolutely has he followed his own path. If you know him at all, it is probably for his ballet ﬁlm Dracula: Pages from a Virgin Diary, or just possibly My Winnipeg, his heartfelt docu-essay tribute to his Canadian hometown. More energetic cineastes may remember 2003’s The Saddest Music in the World, Maddin’s most determined shot at the mainstream, an elaborate parody musical starring Isabella Rossellini. All share Maddin’s preoccupations: a swirl of phantasmagoric imagery and cut-up surrealism, ﬁltered through his particular brand of cinema ancestor-worship (German silents, 50s Technicolor, big-hat noir) and occasional shafts of very daft humour. Clarity of narrative and ease of access is not high on the agenda; Maddin would appear to be the closest living counterpart we have
10 The Guardian 31.08.12
LISTEN WITH YOUR EYES
Guy Maddin’s latest film Keyhole is a woozy homage to Homer and gangster movies. The avant-garde director explains his vision to Andrew Pulver uy Maddin Director G his new e) and (abov hole K ﬁlm ey
to Jack Smith, the underground legend of Flaming Creatures renown. In the ﬂesh, the 56-year-old Maddin turns out to be an avuncular, energetic talker, not afraid to discuss his elaborate concepts in detail. Keyhole, it emerges, was made as a result of “a bunch of dreams I was having that have really been haunting me”. “Melancholy dreams,” he says, “where I revisit my past: dead relatives and homes that have meant a lot to me, particularly my childhood home.” Chief among these, it would seem, is Maddin’s own father, Chas, a general manager for Winnipeg’s ice hockey team who died in 1977, and who Maddin has frequently revisited since in celluloid. Keyhole mashes together noir-gangster imagery with Homer’s Odyssey – “The Odyssey is a story witnessed through the eyes of a son who idolises his father as a great warrior, and I had a childish notion of a father as a strong alpha-male gangster” – and sets up a frankly bizarre and sketchy-to-the-point-of-nonexistent storyline of a hoodlum journeying from room to room in a seemingly haunted house. “New-age friends of mine say I should say goodbye to my father and wrap him up in a blanket and put him in the ground for ever. But I don’t want to.
Isabella Rosselli ni in The Saddest Music in the World (2 003)
PHOTOGRAPHS BFI, JONATHAN LEIBSON/WIREIMAGE
Since we all live in the past and present simultaneously, and the past makes us who we are in the present, destroying it is such a cockeyed notion.” But Keyhole’s tenuous relationship with narrative logic, or even momentto-moment comprehensibility, means it’s perhaps a tad on the self-indulgent side? “Whether I want them to or not, my movies end up disjointed and disconnected and discontinuous. I feel the only way I can get away with such loosey-goosiness, even for my own judge and jury, if it’s genuinely coming from some place honest.” He staged “collage parties” to help generate script ideas for Keyhole: “I invited the best young up-and-coming scene-grabbing artists, in various cities. I would prime their pumps with a few words – ‘electric chair’, things like that – and supplied a stack of old melodrama magazines, a stack of porn, and a few kegs of bourbon. We embarked on a very peaceful and therapeutic and yet disruptive process of snipping paper into blizzards of nipples.” Maddin says he sold a few of the collages to help ﬁnance the ﬁlm: “I should have kept them, on the oﬀchance they’d go up in value, but I needed the money pretty badly.” Money seems to be increasingly on his mind, and explains why he is cropping up so often in galleries. “I never thought about money in the past; but I decided when I turned 50 I was going to have to. I have no savings, no retirement plan, and the art world just seems wealthier. I started to be more serious about it four or ﬁve years ago, and I liked my initial sorties there.” You also get the sense that the art world is as accepting of ﬁlm-makers as cinema is of artists: Maddin mentions Apichatpong Weerasethakul, but he might just as well have taken cues from Patrick Keiller or Matthew Barney. For the past year or so, Maddin has been working on a ﬁlm “seance” project called Hauntings (or Spiritismes, when it fetched up at the Pompidou in Paris earlier this year). The idea is that Maddin and his cohorts would “contact” the ghost of a lost ﬁlm – William Wellman’s Ladies of the Mob, for example, or Mikio Naruse’s The Strength of a Moustache – and then recreate/reimagine it as if under the inﬂuence of the cosmic ectoplasm. It’s expensive, says Maddin, at half a million dollars a go, but he puts on a good show. Maddin says he tried shooting some of the seances simultaneously with Keyhole, on the same set. In practice, this meant actorly rows: Jason Patric and Udo Kier stormed oﬀ set after the latter “started screaming out as
Kaiser Wilhelm in The Beast of Berlin in one corner while Jason was trying to achieve some serene, wrathful interiority on Keyhole in another”. Maddin remains an unrepentant avant-gardist, a ﬁlm-maker committed to walking the untrodden ways, far from commercial gain. Keyhole is no excep-
Keyhole is released in the UK on 14 September
tion. “I wanted to make something viewers could let themselves go with and just listen to, like a piece of music. I don’t mean listen with their ears, I mean listen with their eyes; and feel no need to understand it, but just take it in.” It may not be to everyone’s taste, but cinema is all the richer for his trying.
31.08.12 The Guardian 11
The hip-hop crew is back – with rappers rediscovering the joy of hanging out with your friends and having a good time. Kieran Yates sorts the excitable teenagers from the black-clad computer nerds
n the past few years rap crews have been making a comeback. From all-black-wearing collectives to boys still in school, they have been popping up everywhere from the west coast to New York and this year has seen them reach eye-watering levels of mainstream success. While it might say something about a new generation of entrepreneurs wanting to gain creative control, it’s more likely just a return to what hip-hop was always ys supposed to be about – hanging out with your friends and having the best time of your life ... all to a beat. at. Here are some of the best:
Taylor Gang (Or Die) Key members: Wiz Khalifa, lifa, LoLa Monroe, Chevy Woods, oods, Juicy J. Description: The tattooededup golden boy of Pittsburgh urgh rap, Wiz Khalifa has enlisted isted the talents of Sizzurpslurping rapper Juicy J, former video vixen and fem-cee LoLa Monroe and nd Pittsburgh rapper Chevy y Woods, among others. Taylor Gang is the quintessential crew-cum-busisiness-empire dream, and d now boasts its own record rd label and clothing line. Pretty y impressive for a rapper who spends ends his day smoking copious amounts mounts of weed … Defining moment: Making ing the cover of hip-hop magazine ine the Source earlier in the year, ar, with Wiz draped in an American ﬂag. ﬂag. Key track: Wiz’s 2011 crossover ossover
12 The Guardian 31.08.12 12
single Black and Yellow. Though LoLa Monroe’s Getting To It gives Nicki Minaj a run for her money as she tells us about being squeezed like toothpaste. Slogan: “Being free and being yourself.” Beef? Wiz is dating Kanye West’s exAmber Rose, so watch this space. Anything to look forward to? Wiz’s album O.N.I.F.C is out on 18 September.
A$AP MOB Key members: A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, A$AP Twelvy, $ e y, Ty T Beats (producer of Pe$o), A$AP Ya Yams (Rocky’s manager). Description: A$AP Mob, headed by A$AP Rocky, is a collective of Roc managers, ra rappers and producers. Think Andy Warhol’s Factory after a W hip-hop makeover and relocated m to mo modern-day Harlem. The gang gan are, as may be clear from their monikers, f slightly more militant in their allegiance to the crew. Defi De ning moment: The mob descending into onstage de chaos during one of Rocky’s sets du at SXSW this year. Key track: trac A$AP’s breakout hit Pe$o last las year put the mob on the map, map but the track Bath Salt (you (yo know, that drug that makes you eat people) ma from their th collective mixtape Lord$ Never Worry is another N highlight. highligh Slogan: “Fuck Swag/Stay Trill.” ” Beef? A$AP threatened to A smack “the shit outta” Tyler “ the Creator on Twitter after he Crea apparently apparen criticised his video directing. directin Anything Anythin to look forward to?
Black Hippy members Jay Rock, ScHoolboy Q, Kendrick Lamar and Ab-Soul; (below) Pro Era; (left) LoLa Monroe from Taylor Gang
Debut album LongLiveA$AP is out 11 September and the A$AP MOB mixtape Lord$ Never Worry is out now.
Black Hippy Key members: Kendrick Lamar, ScHoolboy Q, Jay Rock, Ab-Soul. Description: LA foursome Black Hippy provide an antidote to high-gloss crews that dominate the pop charts such as YMCMB and Odd Future. Full of talent, they are in that rare position of being respected by the kind of hip-hop fans who like to lament about “a golden era”, and won’t disappoint them by selling out. Defining moment: Part of parent label Top Dawg entertainment or TDE, which earlier in the year broke
on the prestigious Pitchfork Selector, the crew are rumoured to be gearing up for a European tour. Key track: Joey Bada$$’s mixtape 1991 was released earlier in the year featuring production from MF DOOM and beats from J Dilla. The track There It Go introduced us to the word “swank” (which means “well put together swag”, apparently). Slogan: “It’s the era, no error.” Beef? None to speak of. Anything to look forward to? They have conﬁrmed that they are working on a new album.
Rvidxr Klvn / Raider Klan
PHOTOGRAPH REDFERNS; GETTY IMAGES; WIREIMAGE
Key members: SpaceGhostPurrp, Key Nyata, Denzel Curry, Ethelwulf Description: Indie label 4AD’s ﬁrst hiphop signing SpaceGhostPurrp heads up the Raider Klan. Sometimes styled with Raider hieroglyphics (just like their almost unreadable Twitter feed), their head-to-toe black uniform represents their “black hearts” (according to Purrp). Defining moment: Raider Klan
the internet (or at least the hip-hop section) by releasing something every day for a week. Key track: Lamar’s Section 80 mixtape catapulted the group on to the radar of the hip-hop elite, thanks to single HiiPower. Although Lamar is probably the best known, the squawking-voiced ScHoolboy Q is the real talent, and his release There He Go is one of the best tracks of the year. Slogan: “HiiPower” Beef? According to Ab-Soul there will “never” be a Black Hippy album. Not sure if that’s because they all hate each other, but time will tell. Anything to look forward to? Lamar’s album is out on 2 October.
Pro Era /Progressive Era Key members: Joey Bada$$, Capital Steez, CJ Fly, Chuck Strangers. Description: Headed by 17-year-old Joey Bada$$, this is basically just a bunch of excited teenage boys having a collective wet rap dream. Pro Era are 90s babies of the NY hip-hop scene, full of mischief and, thankfully, talent. The 22-strong (at last count) crew is big on teen braggadaccio and, conveniently, they all go to the same school. Defining moment: After a web TV slot
are preparing to release a clothing line, but up until now it’s been SpaceGhost’s success that has shed most light on them. Key track: SpaceGhostPurrp’s Mysterious Phonk: The Chronicles of SpaceGhostPurrp album, released last year, is a gloopy lo-ﬁ oﬀering that highlights his unique (ie, demented) worldview as he raps about his love of the female form and being a computer nerd. Slogan: No real slogan, unless you count all that stuﬀ about having a black heart. Beef? SpaceGhostPurrp has had a very public falling out with A$AP on Twitter where he opined: “I showed loved to them n*ggas last year and some shit went down, and we don’t f*ck with them no more…I don’t f*ck with you bruh.” Elsewhere, Soulja Boy has waded in, threatening to eat someone’s face or something equally ridiculous. Anything to look forward to? No news on a collaborative album as yet, but SpaceGhost’s record is out now.
ALSO ON THE RAP RADAR
YMCMB (AKA Young Money) The rap crew that forged the blueprint for how to “make it” – includes Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Birdman and a little known rapper called Drake. Most Dope Headed by rapper Mac Miller, Most Dope are a collective of Miller’s friends who follow him around giggling and rolling huge joints. Maybach Music Headed by Rozay, whose crew-cumlabel include French Montana and Gunplay.
Odd Future If you don’t know who they are by now …
31.08.12 The Guardian 13
A CUT ABOVE
So far, indie band Alt-J have come from nowhere to enjoy success without the fame. But that could all be about to change. They talk to Sam Wolfson
PHOTOGRAPH MARTIN GODWIN FOR THE GUARDIAN
arius is the head trimmer at Legend’s, a smart London barber that specialises in wet shaves. Before he came to the UK, Darius trained in Poland, learning how to perform a cut-throat shave by smothering an inﬂated balloon in foam and then removing it with a single blade. Awaiting his razor-sharp skills are four Cambridge lads sporting varying degrees of bum ﬂuﬀ. Keyboardist Gus (a little shadow above his top lip), guitarist Gwill (a coating of wispy blond pelage), drummer Thom (early-onset beard) and singer Joe (as close to clean shaven as you can get with an old disposable). They are Alt-J, and they are the most successful new British band of the year. Their album went top 20, the single is all over the radio and they are now odds-on favourite to win the Mercury music prize, even though nominations are a week away. They are playing sold-out shows in the US, and have charted in Belgium, France and the Netherlands. At a time when guitar music is in the doldrums, they have come from nowhere to buck the trend. Yet Alt-J have somehow managed to ﬁnd success without fame. The group’s ﬁrst single, Tessellate, an onomatopoeic puzzle of angular beats and pointed sexual advances, became a radio hit before anyone knew who they were. “We’ve got this far with pretty much nobody knowing anything about us,” says Gus. Gwill is ﬁrst in the barber’s chair. He is the baby face of the band, all blackrimmed emo glasses and blond ﬂoppy hair. “Gwill uses quite a lot of long words in interviews,” Joe warns me when he’s out of earshot. “He keeps talking about
our songwriting style being nomadic or rhizomatic, but I don’t think he knows what that means.” Much of my conversation with Alt-J is almost town-planning meeting in tone. Instead of answering questions, they often descend into discussions of whether they’re giving a boring answer and what another band would say. At times I think we are all part of a meta in-joke, undermining the whole charade of a music interview. “We only have two rock’n’roll stories,” says frontman Joe, trying to be helpful. “The ﬁrst one is that we were chucked out of a hotel for peeing oﬀ a balcony. Well, I wasn’t personally, but our guitarist Gwill was. In fact I was the one suggesting he just went upstairs and did it in his own hotel room, but he ignored me and just started … hosing it. The other one is we were doing a gig in Sicily and I met some people and went back to their house and I fell asleep and missed my ﬂight the next day.” Joe sighs, realising his tales don’t pack the punch he was hoping for. “We are actually pretty tame. We have a lovely collection of magazines onboard when we’re on tour.” Do they ever want to have a night of excess? “I suppose the thing is that we like to be polite,” says Joe, “and you can’t do that when you’ve just done a fat line of ket before an interview.” It was the same when they met at Leeds University. While most of their friends spent three years getting smashed and dancing to electroclash, they formed a little bubble in their student house. “Oh God, we didn’t go out much,” remembers Gus. “We weren’t socialites at all. We’d just keep working on the record.”
“We’re our harshest critics,” agrees Joe. “We’re not one of those bands that bash things out really quickly. We didn’t want to look like morons, so we spent ages on the little things.” The result of ﬁve years’ hard work is a record that sounds more like a mature “big ideas” third album than something a bunch of students recorded in their digs. Certainly there’s a pop immediacy, but it’s underpinned by complex scoring, well-crafted hooks and some esoteric lyrical ﬂourishes. One song, Taro, is about the death of 20th-century war photographers Robert Capa (who stepped on a mine in Indo-China) and Gerda Taro (who was run over by a tank during the Spanish civil war.) “It was only after reading all this that I discovered she was his love interest and they were engaged,” says Joe. “I liked those two and that story. That gripped me and I trawled through as much as I could to get a good song out of it.” Conversation dies down as the four of them relax into the shaves. “This feels like a dog licking your face,” says a mummiﬁed Joe from underneath a hot towel. Of course, if Alt-J do win the Mercury, they can kiss their nonchalance towards public persona goodbye. The hype machine will come careering through the door, wondering why it wasn’t consulted in the ﬁrst place. But in the meantime, they can continue to muddle along as they are: aﬀable, a bit posh and ﬁne with it. “I feel so relaxed,” announces Gus, smoking a post-shave menthol cigarette outside the barber’s. “I’m going to start getting shiatsu when I get back to Cambridge.”
31.08.12 The Guardian 15
t’s easy to dismiss the claims of most horror movies that they are “based on real events”. When the Lights Went Out is diﬀerent. A groundbreaking kitchen-sink horror ﬁlm, it brings rare social realist grit to the genre. We’re in Yorkshire, in 1974, and an ordinary working-class family is terrorised by the malign spirit of a medieval monk. This isn’t mere fancy. Writer/director Pat Holden based the ﬁlm on the haunting of his auntie Jean’s council house at 30 East Drive, Pontefract. The events were a sensation locally, but largely unknown elsewhere until Colin Wilson wrote about them from witness interviews. The ghoulie, which arrived brieﬂy in 1966 and then reappeared for a protracted stay two years later, caused chaos. Holden was kept away because of his young age. His mother, Rene, the model for the character Rita (Andrea Lowe) in the ﬁlm, was frequently in the thick of the paranormal action, however. “She was a psychic. She read palms, and she was interested in spiritualism and anything weird,” he says. “She went there as much as she could to provide my auntie with some support. But also because she was really fascinated by it.” The women were “tough old birds”, says Holden, women who had been through the war and now led routine lives. “My mum played bingo, she did the shopping, and went to the working men’s club with my dad … I think she found the ghost exciting.” Houseproud Jean, meanwhile, became locked in a “battle of wills”. “I’m convinced, and she was convinced, it tried to wind her up because she was so fastidious.” It threw objects, slashed photographs, created puddles of water, smashed eggs, and made banging noises so loud they could be heard by passersby. The family named the cowled,
Call the exorcist: a scene from When the Lights Went Out
16 The Guardian 31.08.12
A GHOST IN THE HOUSE
Pat Holden’s cousins were at the centre of a notorious haunting in the 1970s. Now he has turned their story into a gritty horror ﬁlm. By Stephen Applebaum
shadowy ﬁgure “Fred” and “took the piss out of it”, says Holden. “Their self-defence mechanism was humour, which I think is a very northern thing.” He could have played the whole of When the Lights Went Out for comedy. But some of the ghost’s actions were less amusing, particularly once it homed in on Jean’s children, Phillip and Diane. “The image that I always remembered was Diane being pulled up the stairs, and the handprints on her neck,” says Holden. “That stuck in my head and I always felt that it should be a climactic moment.” When Holden interviewed Diane at the house for research, she refused to go back in the lounge. “There’s a lot of stuﬀ she doesn’t like to talk about,” he says. “You could tell it aﬀected her badly.” The ﬁlm is his own imaginative recreation of what it would have been like alone in the house with the ghost – as Diane frequently was – as well as the loneliness of childhood. Both siblings are conﬂated in the ﬁlm into a new character, Sally (played by newcomer
Tasha Connor), who ﬁnds, in the ghost, a sort of kindred spirit. “I imagined this kid who is displaced and so desperate that she forms a friendship with something that is dead.” Sally clashes frequently with her father, just as Holden often felt at war with his own dad, Joe. Such discord was important to show, he thinks, as it might explain the phenomenon; a Church of England exorcist told him that ghosts are “the manifestation of some kind of tension within a family”. The ﬁlm, admits Holden, is clearly catharsis. “I have always had the feeling I’ve missed the boat. I was a little bit too young for punk. I was a little bit too old for rave. I’ve always had this feeling of never quite being in the zeitgeist. And I think it was a little bit like that with the ghost. My sister was allowed to see it. My mum got to see it. My dad wasn’t that interested. I felt like I’d missed out.” As a child, he never questioned whether the stories were true, despite the lack of documentary evidence – an audio tape of loud banging sounds is all that exists. “I was a bit surprised by that. Sometimes you do say: ‘Well, did they make it up?’ But I think it was a daily battle against this thing rather than being objective and stepping out and recording it.” He believes that the family’s reluctance to capitalise on the ﬁlm by doing lots of publicity backs up the story’s authenticity. Almost as bad as the ghost itself was the stream of curious visitors to the house. “The family said: ‘Look, if you make a ﬁlm of it we don’t want this to happen again,’” says Holden. “They did think long and hard before letting me run with it. In the end, I think they trusted me.” When the Lights Went Out is released in the UK on 12 September.
Reviews Film Pop Jazz Classical Television
Total Recall page 19
HERE COMES THE SUN
Cat Power is back from the brink with an uplifting and moving album she calls a rebirth. Review page 22
The F&M Playlist
The Rain Song Led Zeppelin A new biography of Zep oﬀers an excuse to indulge in this most bombastic of bands all over again. They still sound awe inspiring.
More Attention Krystal Klear feat Jenna G Producer Krystal Klear embraces 90s nostalgia, enlisting garage legend Jenna G on this electro house oﬀering.
Push and Shove No Doubt Title track from the band’s new album, in their words “our Bohemian Rhapsody” (in ours: lots of diﬀerent-sounding bits stuck together).
Friday Night The Busy Twist (left) Yet another instance of hipsters discovering highlife? Well, yes, but this meeting between London clubland and Ghana is super fresh.
Big Trouble in Little China DJ Yoda feat Action Bronson Former chef Bronson takes a culinary tour of Chinatown through the medium of hip-hop.
31.08.12 The Guardian 17
Berberian Sound Studio
Career-best performance … Toby Jones in Berberian Sound Studio
★★★★★ Dir: Peter Strickland. With: Tony Jones, Cosimo Fusco, Eugenia Caruso, Susanna Cappellaro. 92min. Cert: 15
Three years ago, British ﬁlm-maker Peter Strickland grabbed us with his debut, Katalin Varga, an eerie revenge drama unfolding in the central European countryside. Arresting as it was, nothing in that movie could have given us any clue to this quite extraordinary followup: utterly distinctive and all but unclassiﬁable, a musique concrète nightmare, a psychometaphysical implosion of anxiety, with strange-tasting traces of black comedy and movie-buﬀ riﬀs. It is seriously weird and seriously good. Toby Jones plays a mousy sound engineer called Gilderoy from Dorking in the 1970s; he has taken a job in a post-production studio in Italy, the Berberian sound studio of the title. These facilities are presumably in Rome, but there is to be no highminded cinephile swooning over the history of Cinecittà and the like. This cheesy, crummy place provides the electronic music, sound eﬀects and dialogue overdubbing on low-budget pulp shockers – the giallo genre made famous by Dario Argento: sex, violence and Satanism. With its nasty corridors and distant, repeated and meaningless screams, the building is like a psychiatric hospital. Lonely, homesick Gilderoy ﬁnds himself working on an explicit horror called The Equestrian Vortex. In the studio itself, bored guys aurally simulate human atrocity by whacking and stabbing vegetables, while female stars give operatic screams in the sound booth. (Sadly, however, despite the title, no one gets the coconut halves out.) Gilderoy is confronted with the ﬁlm’s dyspeptic producer Francesco (Cosimo Fusco) and the elegant and sinister director Santini (Antonio Mancino), and Gilderoy baﬄes and irritates everyone with his maladroit Englishness and nerdy insistence on being reimbursed for his expenses, an issue which is ultimately to raise unexpected questions. But how on earth has he got this job? Gilderoy is certainly a whiz at creating new eﬀects, but that might not be the only reason he was hired. Slowly, he becomes immersed in the pure sensual horror of sound: the screams, the scrapes, the clunks and clicks, the sudden electro stabs, the dusty silences that bring out his inner fears. At the mixing desk, he is part high priest, part human sacriﬁce in the black mass of cinema production.
18 The Guardian 31.08.12
Sonic doom With his weird, giallo-inspired drama about an English sound engineer coming apart in Italy, director Peter Strickland conﬁrms himself as a serious British ﬁlm-making talent
By Peter Bradshaw
Berberian Sound Studio has something of early Lynch and Polanski, and the nasty, secretive studio is a little like the tortured Mark Lewis’s screening room in Powell’s Peeping Tom, but that gives no real idea of how boldly individual this ﬁlm is. In fact, it takes more inspiration from the world of electronic and synth creations and the heyday of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, and it is close in spirit to Kafka’s The Castle or to the Gothic literary tradition of Bram Stoker and Ann Radcliﬀe: a world of English innocents abroad in a sensual, mysterious landscape. Strickland shows us the opening credits of The Equestrian Vortex on screen, wittily created for the cognoscenti of course, but this is far from the aﬀectionate, celebratory approach of Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez’s Grindhouse movies. It could be that someone seeing this will be moved to create a feature-length pastiche of The Equestrian Vortex – but that I think would be to misread the detached, alienated and icy spirit in which this ﬁlm is treated here. Crucially, its action is never shown on screen: we see only the mashed and dismembered vegetables, emblems of violence, comic and barbaric. What is most important is the sound, and all the occult equipment for creating and manipulating the sound eﬀects. Strickland imbues this pre-digital world with passion and fascination. This is analogue sound, sound that takes up space in the real world, a material to be shaped like paint or stone or marble. One ﬁlm, bizarrely, is shown on screen and that is Gilderoy’s earlier work, the one he clearly considers to be his masterpiece: a natural history documentary about Dorking and the South Downs, knowledgeable, detailed, passionate but anodyne. Its interpolation in this inner drama of Gilderoy’s mental breakdown is a great moment. He believes this world to be gentle and comforting, and the poignant letters from his mother daily conﬁrm him in both this view and his growing disdain for the world in which he ﬁnds himself now. But might Santini and The Equestrian Vortex be saying something more honest about the natural world? Ultimately, it is not at all clear if the Berberian Sound Studio is corrupting him, or revealing to Gilderoy his awful true destiny. With a face suggesting cherubic innocence, vulnerability and cruelty, Toby Jones gives the performance of his career, and Peter Strickland has emerged as a key British ﬁlm-maker of his generation.
THIS WEEK PETER ENJOYED ...
Short memory Philip K Dick’s story gets ts another airing – for the CGI generation. Meh, says Peter Bradshaw
Total Recall ★★★★★ Dir: Len Wiseman. With: Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel, Bill Nighy. 118min.. Cert: 12A
Len Wiseman’s futurist thriller is a new version of the famous Philip ip K Dick short story We Can Remember mber It for You Wholesale; the result recalls Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner ner and Christopher Nolan’s Inception ion, without, sadly being quite as distinctive as either. And as for the famous 1990 Total Recall by y Paul Verhoeven starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, well, the eﬀects ts are far ﬂashier here, of course, although ough watching the ﬁrst ﬁlm is a reminder nder of just how much special eﬀectss can date. Now it is Colin Farrell (pictured, with Jessica Biel) playing ing
Doug Quaid, the ordinary guy in a boring construction job, in a future world where a cramped and deteriorating urban society depends on exploiting the mineral reserves of subject colonies. Perhaps Farrell is better at playing “ordinary” than Arnold Schwarzenegger, who always looked so uncompromisingly
… a Bellini in Harry’s Bar
extraordinary in any ﬁlm he was ever in, but Farrell doesn’t quite have Schwarzenegger’s weird, almost extraterrestrial charisma. Quaid is married to Lori, played by Kate Beckinsale – the role was memorably Bec taken in 1990 by Sharon Stone – and take in this th movie Doug’s wife is a far more important character, in the action mor pretty much all the way through. pret Doug is bored and unhappy, plagued Dou with bad dreams and on a whim visits company called Rekall a creepy cre that promises to implant vivid “fantasy memories” of exciting “fan events in your brain. Quaid decides even on a “spy adventure” memory, and this triggers a chain of terrifying events, which causes him to question even the reality of his own life. One O oddity of the ﬁlm is that, in the future, the ruling empire is … us! The United Federation of Britain, which whi is busily exploiting a place called call “The Colony”. From the map the opening sequence this would in th appear to be Australia. And why is it app that Britain has attained such global importance? Well, the reason is that imp the plot involves terrorists, or freedom ghters, and they are supposed to be ﬁgh the good guys. Even so long after 9/11, distinctions have to be drawn and dist contemporary associations carefully con managed. Having said this, the vision man in the movie is interesting: of London L vast, ugly sprawl, as if a million a va Shards have been imposed on the Sha city from above; it might not be so far from the future truth. It’s a bit of a ﬂavourless CGI-fest, without the character and comedy w of the Arnie version, and it never really gets to grips with the idea of “reality” as a slippery, malleable concept.
31.08.12 The Guardian 19
The Myth of the American Sleepover
the undead. The blood-and-guts FX work is also of a good standard, but the ﬁlm needs more than mere gore blimey. PON
★★★★★ Dir: David Robert Mitchell. With: Claire Sloma, Marlon Morton, Amanda Bauer. 96min. Cert: 15
Petit Nicolas ★★★★★
The teens of suburban Detroit are spending the last nights of their summer at pyjama parties, stupeﬁed and waiting for escape. Except Scott (Brett Jacobsen), a college dropout who’s tracking down a pair of twins he had a crush on in high school. Scott’s quest is at the heart of the problem with writer/director David Robert Mitchell’s sweet, sexless drama. Presumably not all kids are roaming as wildly as Larry Clark’s little heathens, but this ﬁlm’s reverence to three little words (“I like you”) is chastity-band creepy. I like you, too, Myth of the American Sleepover – but I’m going no further than that. Henry Barnes
Dir: Laurent Tirard. With: Maxime Godart, Valérie Lemercier, Kad Merad. 90min. Cert: PG
Samsara ★★★★★ Dir: Ron Fricke. 102min. Cert: 12A
Although Ron Fricke’s followup to the stunning Baraka arrives almost 20 years later with his methods virtually unchanged, it still seems just as fresh and interesting. His collection of beautifully shot, enigmatic images from his globetrotting large-format cameras are this time assembled to tell a nonnarrative tale of human belief systems, congregations and wonders both manmade and natural. Each snippet tells only part of a bigger story, barely giving you time to process who you are looking at and what they are doing, but this makes the whole thing a more active experience than most ﬁlms. Questions are provoked then dismissed as we move on, but the themes build up in the mind. It may be just more of the same from Fricke, but with his unique process, another incrediblelooking lap around the world is more than welcome. Phelim O’Neill
[REC]3 Génesis ★★★★★ Dir: Paco Plaza. With: Leticia Dolera, Diego Martin, Javier Botet. 80min. Cert: 18
Roll shaky handheld camera on the third instalment of Jaume Belagueró and Paco Plaza’s found-footage horror series, a prequel that trades the scratchy terror of its predecessors for hit-and-miss body shocks. This time a demonic virus has taken hold at the
20 The Guardian 31.08.12
wedding reception of Clara (Leticia Dolera) and Koldo (Diego Martin). The conceit that made the franchise is the ﬁrst to cop it, as camcorders are trampled under foot; still, there’s just enough Braindead-style satire to keep the blood up. The danceﬂoor’s full of bodies, the bride and groom have been backed into a corner by relatives desperate for their pound of ﬂesh. Pretty much your average wedding, then. HB
Belief systems … Samsara; A Few Best Men
The books on which this is based, though virtually unknown here, have been an integral part of growing up in France since their creation in the late 1950s – where this ﬁlm demolished all challengers at the box oﬃce upon its release a couple of years ago. Written by René Goscinny (better known for Asterix, whose comics make a cameo here), it takes the adult world and ﬁlters it through the more simplistic and imaginative eyes of a young boy. Here Nicolas, through a series of misunderstandings, believes his parents are planning to supplant him with a new baby brother, and he rallies his friends in a series of unusual plans to make sure this doesn’t happen. It presents a gently humorous, beautifully shot idyllic version of childhood, all blue skies, good manners and not a hair out of place. A nice place to visit for the duration. PON
A Few Best Men ★★★★★
Cockneys vs Zombies ★★★★★ Dir: Matthias Hoene. With: Harry Treadaway, Michelle Ryan, Alan Ford. 88min. Cert: 15
Like Snakes on a Plane, this is a ﬁlm that seems content to sit back and let et the title do all the work – the ﬂat direction does little to imbue the proceedings with any feeling of tension or surprise. An East End building development unearths an ancient zombie grave, unleashing an n undead plague. Our young supposed d heroes present a very tired and insulting version of cockneys – thick, aggressive and dishonest; introduced as bankrobbers, they put the viewer instantly on the side of the zombies. Much more interesting ing and digniﬁed are the older cast members in a besieged care home. Led by Alan Ford, there are some nice ce moments and some much-needed originality here, a highpoint being Richard Briers’s ﬁrst encounter with h
Dir: Stephan Elliott. With: Xavier Samuel, Kris Marshall, Kevin Bishop. 98mins. Cert: 15
This ﬁlm shows just how delicate a construct a good comedy can be. What must have seemed at some point in i production to be charming arrives on screen as and hilarious hi neither of those things. In a neithe to merge Meet the clear attempt a Parents with The Hangover, Parent Samuel drags his rather unappealing Samue mates to Australia to and unlikable un attend atten his wedding to a senator’s daughter. Cue plenty of welldaugh telegraphed gags with setups so teleg laborious and obvious that they labor deliver deliv relief when they are ﬁnal nally over, rather than laughs. It’s full f of events that are ridiculous rather rathe than actually funny, such as the seemingly unending routine s involving a prized sheep and a invo misplaced bag of hard drugs. mispl It’s all oddly low-energy, climaxing scenes of almost oﬀensively in scen unearned emotion. PON unearn
Reviews Pop By Alexis Petridis
Second thoughts The Vaccines want to show the world they’re a diﬀerent band now. But they don’t seem to have decided what kind yet
The Vaccines Come of Age SONY
PHOTOGRAPH: GRAEME ROBERTSON FOR THE GUARDIAN
Without hearing a note of their second album, you might already detect a new sense of purpose about the Vaccines. For one thing, there’s the title. Their debut album slunk into the shops under the name What Did You Expect From the Vaccines?, an apologetic shrug amid a storm of hype. Here, instead, is a cocksure statement of conﬁdence and maturity. For another, there’s the way they look now. Gone are their nondescript, preppy clothes, replaced by lank, centre-parted hair, skintight jeans and the kind of denim cut-oﬀ known to metal fans as a battle jacket. It’s all presumably intended to communicate the same message expressed by vocalist Justin Young in a recent interview: “We don’t want to be an indie band any more, we want to be a rock band.” There’s something charmingly gauche and gung-ho about signalling your new rock direction by dressing up like the front row of the Swindon Leisure Centre the night Saxon’s Strong Arm of the Law Tour ’80 hit town; it’s like indicating your new album has a reggae inﬂuence by insisting every member wear those fancy dress shop rasta hats with the fake dreadlocks attached. Still, the Vaccines’ new assurance and vaulting ambition seems a little hard to square with Come of Age’s two singles, both of which ﬁnd Young agonising over his own shortcomings as a rock star. On the peppy Teenage Icon, he proclaims himself “ordinary … average … out of shape with messy hair … not magnetic”. Opener No Hope, meanwhile, buﬀs up the trebly sound found on their debut
Trying on other people’s styles … the Vaccines
THIS WEEK ALEXIS LISTENED TO
AlunaGeorge - Your Drums, Your Love Another fantastic single from London duo: as before, a pop sensibility collides with weird electronics to startling eﬀect
until it sounds suitably epic, while Young impersonates the poisonous, bug-eyed sneer Bob Dylan patented in the mid-60s: “The whole thing feels like an exercise in trying to be someone I would rather not be.” This is a funny thing to sing while you’re audibly doing an impression of another artist. Maybe it’s a clever metatextual joke, or maybe Young just hasn’t really thought it through; either way, you get the point about his discomfort as a frontman. It goes without saying that an awareness of your own shortcomings and a sense of unease are not characteristics beﬁtting a would-be rock god: it seems highly unlikely there were waves of self-doubt emanating from vocalist “Biﬀ ” Byford the night Saxon’s Strong Arm of the Law Tour ’80 hit Swindon Leisure Centre. Nevertheless, it’s discomfort rather than conﬁdence that runs through Come of Age, a noticeably more tentative record than the Vaccines are talking it up to be. The sense of a band with ambitions to be something other than what they currently are is strong, but so is the sense that they haven’t really worked out what it is they want to be. Aside from the Dylan impersonation, there are tracks on which the Vaccines do that thing indie bands aiming for greater heaviness always do and write boring songs with riﬀs but no tunes: maintaining a certain standard, the Vaccines’ boring songs with riﬀs but no tunes are every bit as boring as the Arctic Monkeys’ boring songs with riﬀs but no tunes. More successful are Aftershave Ocean’s stab at a Teenage
Fanclub jangle, and All in Vain’s attempt at classic 60s pop, complete with George Harrison-inspired slide guitar. Amid all the trying-on of other people’s styles, the most successful tracks are the ones that stick to what the Vaccines did on their debut, albeit in a slightly more opaque way. With lyrics in which Young imagines himself “bewitching and enthralling all the boys”, I Wish I Was a Girl attempts to conjure up an atmosphere of louche sexual ambiguity. On that level, it’s a failure – it feels about as louche and sexually ambiguous as Gertcha by Chas and Dave – but musically it’s terriﬁc: winding, crepuscular, decorated with spikes of Pixies-esque guitar. The dolorous twang of Weirdo is beautifully controlled, threatening to burst into something more direct, but never quite doing it. The closing Lonely World balances its anthemic ambitions against an oﬀ-kilter, trudging beat, a weird combination that somehow works. Come of Age isn’t a bad album, but nor is it the swaggering bid for world domination it’s made out to be: it’s too confused and incoherent. But if it isn’t going to propel them skywards, there’s enough decent songs on it to keep the Vaccines ticking over in their current position. Given that their current position is as virtually the only new British alt-rock band to sell any albums, that’s hardly a disaster, even if it’s clearly not what the Vaccines had in mind. But as someone listening to Justin Young agonizing about his inadequacies might gently suggest: sometimes you have to be content with what you are.
31.08.12 The Guardian 21
Reviews Rock & Pop
Two Door Cinema Club’s boisterous gigs belie the shy, understated young men on stage. Similarly, and like 2010’s successful debut, Tourist History, Beacon combines uplifting electro pop with introspective, melancholy undercurrents. The likes of Wake Up, a cocktail of Delphic/Bloc Party electronics and youthful energy, explode with such enthusiasm you can almost hear the sound of curtains being hurled apart. However, Alex Trimble’s vocals and lyrics are more delicate, with their new songs particularly reﬂecting the loneliness of touring. “I’ll be home next year,” he promises on opener Next Year, while the lovely Settle ﬁnds him ruefully pondering that “This is not home”. Next Year’s ﬂeeting Beach Boys/Beatles harmonies aside, there aren’t too many departures from what made them successful: radio-friendly songs with intricate little catchy bits which may ﬁnd new homes as advertising jingles. A path they haven’t explored is the ethereal frailty Trimble brought to Underworld’s Olympic opening ceremony tune Caliban’s Dream, but Trimble’s contention that Beacon “takes us one step closer to the band we’ve dreamed of becoming” suggests a work in progress. Dave Simpson
Cat Power Sun MATADOR
Though the word Sun seems to point backward, to the southern soul/blues of Cat Power’s last studio album, The Greatest, it has nothing to do with Sun Studios. Rather, the name comes from the album’s second track, an electronic swoon that acts as a mission statement: “Here is the day/ We are free, you and me, and we can ﬁnally run.” In the six years since The Greatest, Power has faced bankruptcy and the end of a relationship, but she’s lived to ﬁght another day, and this album is what she terms a “rebirth”. It is assuredly that. Guitars have been swapped for synths, beats are crisp and she’s evidently on the road to sobriety and emotional recovery. Inevitably, there’s rawness and relapses (the R&B chant 3,6,9 was written in the throes of a hangover, after a night of failing to
22 The Guardian 31.08.12
drink the pain away), but she’s found a kind of peace. Dueting with fellow survivor Iggy Pop on Nothin But Time, she sings, as if to herself: “It’s up to you” – a sentiment that underlies the rest of this moving record. Caroline Sullivan
Jens Lekman I Know What Love Isn’t SECRETLY CANADIAN
Someone once compared Jens Lekman to the ﬁlmmaker Wes Anderson, for his sparkly artistic vision and his tendency to come over a bit twee. The 31-year-old Gothenburger is best known for combining autobiography with arch humour; he writes quizzical pop songs with arch titles (Rocky Dennis’ Farewell Song to the Blind Girl is about the guy from Mask) and he’s got the kind of shrugging sadness that resonates deeply with the Brits, from his amusing self-
Too much anonymity … Rita Ora
deprecation to his Morrissey-ﬂat voice. On this third album nothing quite matches the second track, Erica America, for subtlety, its delicately anguished lyric set to a lush, Richard Carpenter-style melody. Elsewhere, the fashionably tinny production and unending roster of failed romances and pretty girls’ names start to sound weirdly ﬂippant. He says he set out to explore love’s grey areas, but he’s rather too stylised to get to the heart of the matter. Kate Mossman
The Fresh & Onlys Long Slow Dance SOUTERRAIN TRANSMISSIONS
While Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, Mikal Cronin et al are busy establishing something of a new golden age for superfuzzed psych-rock in San Francisco, elsewhere in the city the sound of 1980s trenchcoat rock seems to be making an unexpected transatlantic comeback. Sleepy Sun’s recent album contained a fair few echo-laden tilts at early U2, and on their fourth fulllength, the Fresh & Onlys forge deeper into the shimmering, glassy indie sound they’ve been working towards for some time. There are still shades of the more traditional, garagey sound of their hometown, too – a surfy twang here; a pretty, paisley ﬂourish there – but it’s the gentle boom of Tim Cohen’s vocals, hovering at the border between melancholy and cheer, that make Long Slow Dance sound a bit more Cumbria than California. There’s airy, hilltop drama in the synths and piano that nestle behind the guitars, too, and on standout songs such as Presence of Mind and rollicking closer Yes Or No, enough songwriting smarts to make a somewhat unlikely stylistic journey well worth the trip. Tom Hughes
Rita Ora Ora ROC NATION
Not many pop stars can they say they have duetted with Craig David, auditioned to represent the UK at Eurovision and signed a multimillion-pound deal with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation. Unfortunately for Rita Ora, her backstory is the most interesting thing about her, with her debut feeling more like a collection of other people’s songs than a cohesive album. Rihanna’s inﬂuence is all over it – from the fact that the Drake-penned
PHOTOGRAPH MICHAEL BOWLES/REX
Two Door Cinema Club
31.08.12 The Guardian 23
Reviews Rock, pop, world and jazz
ﬁrst single, RIP, was originally written for her, to the employment of most of her recent collaborators (Stargate, The-Dream, will.i.am etc). But while Rihanna stamps her authority on her best songs, Rita often sounds a bit lost amongst the aggressive bravado (the Diplo-produced Facemelt) or modern self-empowerment numbers (Shine Ya Light, Roc the Life). The three No 1 singles – RIP, How We Do (Party) and DJ Fresh collaboration Hot Right Now – are all clear highlights, but the lilting Hello, Hi, Goodbye and the sleek, Siapenned Radioactive aside, there’s just too much anonymity. Michael Cragg
Idan Raichel for a series of improvised, largely instrumental pieces in which both musicians quietly extend their range. Raichel has become something of a hero across the Middle East for his adventurous fusion of Israeli, Arab and African themes, though his band, the Idan Raichel Project, sometimes veer towards classy global easy-listening. Here, he allows the African guitar hero to dominate many of the tracks, with Touré moving away from his driving, electric-guitar bluesrock style to concentrate on laid-back acoustic riﬀs and improvised ﬂurries that at times echo the work of his legendary father, Ali Farka Touré. Raichel adds sensitive piano embellishments, and the duo are backed by insistent bass and calabash percussion, with added harmonica work and vocals from Ethiopian-Israeli singer Cabra Casey. Ideal for late-night listening or meditation. RD
Brother Ali Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color RHYMESAYERS
While ostensibly an attempt to address contemporary social issues, this fourth album by Minnesotan white Muslim rapper Brother Ali is more clearly an exercise in nostalgia. The consequence may not be intended, but it turns out to be Mourning in America’s main strength. With production by Jake One that’s heavy on the drum ﬁlls, horn ﬂares and rolling piano hooks, you can occasionially mistake a song for latenoughties Jay-Z. Ali’s ﬂow, meanwhile, is reminiscent of early Kanye or, better yet, Pharoahe Monch. It’s melliﬂuous and clear in its delivery, but this points up Ali’s limitations at the same time; the inﬂexibility of his style and the limits of his vocabulary. As for the politics, the subjects may be job insecurity (Work Everyday) or sub-prime property (Fajr), but there is little in the way of insight that couldn’t have been gleaned from the news, while speciﬁcity is usually ignored in favour of familiar generalisations. In this, Brother Ali sounds like even older hip-hop; the golden-age days when Five Percent Nation rappers were as common as club swag MCs today. Paul MacInnes
Staﬀ Benda Bilili Bouger Le Monde CRAMMED DISCS
The world’s best-known band of paraplegic former street musicians are back, with a UK tour to coincide with the Paralympics, a Prom at the Albert Hall next week, and a second album providing further proof that they have succeeded because of their music, not
24 The Guardian 31.08.12
Ishmael Wadada Leo Smith Ten Freedom Summers CUNEIFORM RECORDS
★★★★★ Melliﬂuous but limited … Brother Ali
Election Special Ry Cooder Showing a side of Mitt Romney that he might not appreciate Contact Noisettes Frothy fun, as if that were a crime Ashes Kyla La Grange Parade’s End to Florence Welch’s Downton?
just because of their extraordinary history. When I ﬁrst met them in Kinshasa three years ago, they were still rehearsing in a zoo, and surviving by selling cigarettes from their wheelchairs when they weren’t busking. They said they played “rumba-blues” because it was popular with European audiences. Now they are global stars, but as this new set proves, they are still distinctively Congolese musicians, matching Latin, African and funk inﬂuences in songs that are both cheerfully infectious and thoughtful. The lyrics are moral and optimistic – with warnings about begging, joining gangs or evil churchmen matched against songs about their own history – while the music is consistently joyful, featuring guitars, seven lead vocalists, insistent percussion, and the remarkable wailing solos of Roger Landu on his home-made, single-string satonge, constructed around a tin can. Magniﬁcent. Robin Denselow
The Touré-Raichel Collective The Tel Aviv Sessions CUMBANCHA
A gently mesmeric set in which the Malian guitarist Vieux Farka Touré teams up with Israeli keyboard player
Ishmael Wadada Leo Smith, the 70-year-old American trumpeter, composer and teacher, has spent more than three decades composing the four-and-a-half hours of music on this set, inspired by the freedom struggles of African-Americans since the 19th century. Smith’s London appearances with local musicians this week have been all-improv encounters, but the huge work on these recordings (premiered in Los Angeles over three evenings last October) join the trumpeter’s exciting small band with pianist Anthony Davis, bassist John Lindberg and drummers Pheeroan akLaﬀ and Susie Ibarra, and Southeast Chamber Music’s nine-piece classical ensemble. These variously spiky and solemn pieces shift through Miles Davis-like muted-horn slow-burns, a loose, Art Ensemble of Chicago feel on Thurgood Marshall and Brown v Board of Education (the titles often name key historical episodes), romantic classical strings swirls on Black Church, and rugged, almost swing episodes such as The Freedom Riders Ride. The jazz and classical groups play separately and sometimes merge, and though conventional themes or sustained pulses are mostly sidelined by the languages of free jazz and contemporary classical music, this epic life’s work is a landmark in jazz’s rich canon. John Fordham
Theatres London Adelphi 0844 811 0053 Final Weeks Must End 22 Sept
SWEENEY TODD Mon-Sat 7.30pm, Wed & Sat 2.30pm
DOMINION 0844 847 1775
WE WILL ROCK YOU
THRILLER – LIVE!
by QUEEN & BEN ELTON Mon-Sat 7.30, Mat Sat 2.30 Extra show last Wednesday of every month at 2.30 www.wewillrockyou.co.uk
0844 482 9673 www.barmybritain.com 'Bloody, marvellous stuff!' EXP
Songs of Michael & the Jackson 5 Tue-Fri7.30, Sat 4&8, Sun 3.30&7.30 ‘THE SHOW IS AS BRILLIANT AND FRESH AS EVER!’ Magic 105.4 www,thrillerlive.com
Winner Best Musical! Oliviers Tue-Sat 7.30,Tue&Sat 3pm, Sun 5pm
LYRIC THEATRE 0844 412 4661
Prince Edward 0844 482 5152
Aldwych Theatre 0844 847 1712
TOP HAT "A musical like this comes around once in a lifetime." Sunday Tel Mon-Sat 7.30, Thur & Sat 2.30 Extra Tues matinee from 11 Sep www.tophatonstage.com AIR COOLED THEATRE
FORTUNE 0844 871 7626
New London Theatre 020 7452 3000 / 0844 412 4654
Tue-Sat 8, Tue & Thurs 3, Sat 4 www.thewomaninblack.com
Mon, Thu-Sat 8pm Thu, Sat & Sun 3pm, Sun 6pm
HER MAJESTY'S 0844 412 2707
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA
WICKED WickedTheMusical.co.uk Mon-Sat 7.30pm Wed & Sat 2.30pm
CELEBRATING 25 YEARS Mon-Sat 7.30, Thu & Sat 2.30 www.ThePhantomOfTheOpera.com
Cambridge Theatre 08444124652 WINNER 7 OLIVIER AWARDS Roald Dahl’s
GIELGUD 0844 482 5130
CHARIOTS OF FIRE
The 39 Steps
LES MISERABLES RSC Julius Caesar
WINNER! 2012 Olivier Audience Award Eves 7.30, Mats Wed & Sat 2.30 www.LesMis.com
PALLADIUM 0844 412 2957
FINAL WEEK! THE WIZARD OF OZ Starring Des O'Connor
***** 'A magnificent triumph' Mail on Sunday Mon-Sat 19:45, Wed & Sat 15:00 chariotsoffireonstage.com AIR COOLED THEATRE
LYCEUM 0844 871 3000 book online www.thelionking.co.uk Disney Presents
Tue-Sat7.30, Wed/Sat 2.30, Sun3 £25 Day Seats From 10am in Person
Vaudeville Theatre 0844 482 9675 NOEL COWARD’S NOW SHOWING - 5 WEEKS ONLY!
SOUL SISTER Now Showing – 5 Weeks Only! VICTORIA PALACE 0844 811 0055 Shaftesbury Theatre 0207 379 5399
ROCK OF AGES THE SMASH HIT MUSICAL
St Martin's 08444 991515 60th year of Agatha Christie's
THE LION KING This week: Tue-Sat 7.30 Wed, Thu, & Sat 2.30 Sun 2.30 Matinees recommence 9 Sep Groups 08448717644 / 02078450949
Theatre Royal Bath 01225 448844 SUMMER SEASON 2012 THE TEMPEST Until September 8 www.theatreroyal.org.uk
VOLCANO Savoy Theatre 0844 871 7687
Andrew Lloyd Webber's
MATILDA THE MUSICAL
Mon-Sat 8pm, Wed 3pm, Sat 4pm
QUEEN'S 0844 482 5160
Noël Coward Theatre 08444825141 A Resounding Triumph" IoS
APOLLO VICTORIA 0844 847 1696
Criterion Theatre 0844 847 2483 London’s Funniest Comedy
£25 day seats available from 10am Warhorseonstage.com
Performances Monday - Sunday 020 7401 9919 shakespearesglobe.com
By CS Lewis Adapt. by Rupert Goold FINAL 3 WKS - ENDS 9 SEPT Mon,Wed,Thu 2.30,Thu-Sat 7.30 Sat 3, Sun 12 & 3.30 www.lionwitchtheshow.com
MOVING TO THE NOVELLO THEATRE FROM 6 SEPT www.Mamma-Mia.com
WAR HORSE GLOBE THEATRE
THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE
SHREK THE MUSICAL
THE WOMAN IN BLACK
Ambassadors 08448 112 334
Tue 7, Wed-Sat 7.30, Wed & Sat 2.30, Sun 3 www.matildathemusical.com
PRINCE OF WALES 0844 482 5114 Good seats still available this week
DRURY LANE 0844 871 8810
The Threesixty Theatre 08448717693 KENSINGTON GARDENS
PHOENIX THEATRE 08448717629
Evenings 7.30 Mats. Tues 3 Sat 4 www.the-mousetrap.co.uk
BILLY ELLIOT THE MUSICAL Mon-Sat 7.30pm, Thu & Sat 2.30pm Billyelliotthemusical.com
Wyndham’s 0844 482 5120 FINAL WEEK
ABIGAIL’S PARTY Mon - Sat 7.45, Thurs & Sat 3pm
Cage: Dream; The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs; etc
Schumann: Violin Concertos in D minor and A minor; Phantasie
Marwood/BBC Scottish SO/Boyd
As pianist Alexei Lubimov reveals in a short memoir included in the liner notes, the origins of this quietly haunting disc might be traced back to 1988, when John Cage visited Russia as part of the US delegation to the international contemporary music festival held in Leningrad. Lubimov and his contemporaries were already performing Cage, but a few weeks after that visit a ﬁve-hour concert of his works was staged in Moscow involving a new generation of musicians, one of whom was the soprano Natalia Pschenitschnikova, who shares this disc of early songs and piano pieces with Lubimov. Their selection ranges from the Three Songs to words by Gertrude Stein of 1933, composed before Cage went to study with Schoenberg in Los Angeles, to pieces from the 1940s, such as the Joyce setting The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs, as well as She Is Asleep, Cage’s only work for voice and prepared piano, and the unaccompanied Experiences 2, to a poem by EE Cummings. Between the songs come some of the early piano and prepared piano pieces often, like Meditation and The Unavailable Memory Of, and many of them composed for dances by Cage’s partner, Merce Cunningham. But what emerges most forcefully is the precision of Cage’s aural imagination. Nothing is generalised, and the performances by Lubimov and Pschenitschnikova take immense care over every nuance, without ever sacriﬁcing any of the sense of the music’s shape.
Anthony Marwood is the latest violinist to go into bat on behalf of Schumann’s late and much-criticised D minor Violin Concerto, a work that was completed in 1853, but withheld by Clara Schumann after her husband’s death, and eventually performed in 1937. There’s little Marwood can do to disguise the shortcomings of the solo writing, or the repetitions of the ﬁnale, but he and the BBC Scottish Symphony go at it with a great deal of enthusiasm. The singlemovement Phantasie in C is more cogent and rewarding, while the “Violin Concerto in A minor” is a real curiosity – the composer’s 1853 recasting of his Cello Concerto in the same key. The solo line tends to lie over the orchestral accompaniment rather than weaving its way through it, which does make the work seem less introspective than usual.
Debussy: Preludes Books 1 & 2 Pierre-Laurent Aimard PHOTOGRAPH MARCO BORGGREVE
Pierre-Laurent Aimard’s muchpublicised recent claim in an interview with a German newspaper that Debussy is a greater composer than Wagner is by no means original – it was also made in an inﬂuential study of 20th-century music ﬁrst published in France in the 1960s. But presumably it must have
drawn attention to his new Debussy recording, which neatly ﬁts both books of piano preludes on to a single disc. As you’d expect, Aimard’s accounts of the 24 pieces are technically impeccable, whether articulating every rhythmic detail in La Danse de Puck, or perfectly layering the chordal accumulations of La Cathédrale Engloutie, but there is something matter of fact about it all. Alongside Alexei Lubimov’s recent revelatory ECM set on a piano of Debussy’s time, Aimard’s version seems very much an also-ran.
Technically impeccable … Pierre-Laurent Aimard
Suk: A Summer’s Tale; Prague BBCSO/Be ˇlohlávek CHANDOS
Elgar: The Apostles Evans/Coote/Groves/ Imbrailo/Kempsters/ Sherratt/Hallé Choir and O/Elder (HALLE, TWO CDS)
Mark Elder and the Hallé have already made magniﬁcent recordings of Elgar’s two other great oratorios, The Dream of Gerontius and The Kingdom, and like those, this new version of The Apostles is based upon a performance given at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, in May. It’s hard to believe that this detailed account was sourced from a concert – there is very little extraneous noise. Though The Apostles is usually regarded as inferior to The Kingdom, Elder’s performance has shown that, though the narrative thread is sometimes quite weak, the best of the score is top-quality Elgar. It’s not a work that has been extensively recorded, but this joins two ﬁne versions, conducted by Adrian Boult (EMI) and Richard Hickox (Chandos). Elder doesn’t supersede them, but makes a choice that much more diﬃcult.
A Summer’s Tale is one of three symphonic poems that Josef Suk composed in the wake of his great Asrael Symphony, which he had completed in 1906 as a memorial to his wife and to his father-in-law Dvor˘ák. Jirí Be ˘lohlávek and the BBC Symphony Orchestra made a ﬁne recording of the second poem in the trilogy, Ripening, for Chandos two years ago, but A Summer’s Tale, ﬁrst performed in 1909, is more expansive work, in ﬁve movements lasting about 55 minutes in this performance. The language is highly wrought – late-romantic, with just occasional hints that Suk may have been aware of the musical world that Debussy had revealed – and Suk’s models were presumably were Dvor˘ák’s late symphonic poems. But Suk’s eﬀorts lack the conciseness and the dramatic instincts of his mentor’s: neither A Summer’s Tale nor Prague really justiﬁes its length, however sumptuous and grandiose the eﬀects. Reviews by Andrew Clements. To download or buy any reviewed CD, go to guardian.co.uk/ music/reviews or call 0330 333 6840.
31.08.12 The Guardian 27
Reviews Television INSTANT OUTRAGE
Your next box set Brideshead Revisited Thirty years after Brideshead Revisited was ﬁrst broadcast on ITV, some questions remain unanswered. Why, after Sebastian threw up through Charles’s ground-ﬂoor Oxford college window, did the latter not clean up the mess but retire to bed, where the stench must surely have invaded his dreams? Were Oxford servants in the interwar years so in thrall to their oppressors that they could say of Lord Sebastian, as Lunt (the intolerably ’umble Bill Owens) does, the following day: “Such an amusing young man. Pleasure to clean up for him, I’m sure.” Does a fetid air, for me, infuse the whole drama – the suﬀocatingly deferential class system, the airless orchid house of its quest-for-grace storyline, the rottenness at the heart of the English stately home Arcadia? I can answer that last question, at least: yes, yes, yes! That said, rent this 30th anniversary box set and maybe you’ll enjoy what I found and still ﬁnd insuﬀerable. The TV series follows the novel as a bildungsroman with a framing device. Twenty years after he was bewitched by tragic lord Sebastian Flyte, younger son of the Marchmain dynasty, both at Oxford and at the posh blond god’s country estate (Castle Howard in North Yorkshire serves well here), Captain Charles Ryder returns to the pile during the second world war after being unexpectedly billeted there. He recalls himself as a virgin undergraduate seduced by Sebastian from tweedy academia into the Marchmain family’s ambit. Later, after being entangled in the Roman Catholic family members’ quests for spiritual redemption for the best part of two decades, he ﬁnds himself “homeless, childless, middle-aged and loveless”. But the quest for grace that spurred
28 The Guardian 31.08.12
Mark Lawson asks whether anyone was really oﬀended by Citizen Khan guardian.co.uk/tv
A week in radio Secrets shared Elisabeth Mahoney
Evelyn Waugh is less captivating to viewers than the nostalgia for a lost, ostensibly better world. Long before Downton was a twinkle in Julian Fellowes’ eye, Charles Sturridge and John Mortimer’s adaptation of Waugh’s novel proselytised for the gilded charms of the landed gentry and doubtless provoked a similar spike in National Trust season-ticket sales. Brideshead has always been a problem to me, not least because I was at Oxford when it was ﬁrst screened. Thatcherism was hard enough to tolerate; worse were the wannabe Sebastians brandishing teddy bears and yucking up their enthusiasm for the English nobility of yore. Brideshead has a timely pop at the the Bullingdon club, whose beefy posh thugs chuck the ﬂamboyantly camp Anthony Blanche in an Oxford fountain for the twin crimes of being gay and of south European ancestry. Only a few years after this telly drama, such traditional undergraduate rites of passage were being performed by Cameron, Johnson and Osborne. This adaptation, I feel sure in my most bitter moments, helped Oxbridge dining society culture to thrive and gave our current rulers their as-yet-unsated taste for anti-egalitarian politics. Even if that’s not true, it’s well worth watching Brideshead Revisited with that idea in mind. Stuart Jeﬀries
Anthony Andrews and Jeremy Irons in Brideshead Revisited. Below: Debbie Daniels knows all her husband’s secrets …
It was, Jane Garvey suggested, “a little bit of radio history”. On Monday, Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live joined forces: Woman’s Hour and Men’s Hour shared a 45-minute slot co-hosted by Jane Garvey and Tim Samuels. The two networks make unlikely bedfellows – they might struggle to chat sitting next to each other at a dinner party – but Garvey was there as a bridge, well known to listeners of both. The programme’s theme was secrets. Garvey and Samuels shared theirs, which predictably weren’t earth-shattering: Garvey can’t use chopsticks and Samuels is having laser treatment to remove hair from his back. But there were more powerful stories of lives shaped or changed by secrets. These came mostly in women’s contributions in what felt like the Woman’s-Hour parts of the programme: lengthy interviews with women talking about family secrets (a murder), hiding your sexuality, or discovering that you are adopted. Joan talked about the latter, finding out as her adopted mother died. “I was bereaved of my mother and my identity,” she said. What stung more, she explained, was gradually realising that everyone else in her life knew: “It was only a secret from me.” Cath described living two lives, as a married heterosexual woman and also a lesbian. “It was what my mother wanted,” she said, trying to explain how she could live a lie. She and a female friend would pretend to go shopping every Saturday, renting a room instead. Nobody guessed: “They didn’t even realise we didn’t have any shopping.” The men’s contributions were less moving overall: shorter, lighter and in one instance downright odd. Magician Paul Daniels talked about secrets or – in fact – the lack of them between him and his wife Debbie. He would tell her any tricks she wanted to know about, he said breezily, and they are open about everything. This ended with a big reveal (Debbie was shopping for bathroom fixtures and fittings), and was a reminder that, as well as radio history, the programme was also a bit of bank-holiday fun.
his is not a good day for John Paul Rocksavage, the good cop played by Warren Brown in Good Cop (BBC1). Well he wakes up in Liverpool for a start ... hey, c’mon, I don’t mean that, I’m not going to have to go there to apologise, am I? I mean I’d love to, some of my best friends are scousers, it’s one of my favourite cities. And it looks beautiful – in a north-west kind of way – in Stephen Butchard’s brooding four-part police drama, like Manchester did in Cracker ... Anyway, moving (swiftly) back to John Paul’s bad day. While out on his morning run along the beach he bumps into a meaningful ex. She’s with her (their?) daughter, he wants to chat, the ex isn’t interested. Then John Paul has an unpleasant encounter with a thug called Finch (terrifyingly played by Stephen Graham) in a cafe, who snarls: “The next copper I see on his own, I’m going to hammer him.” To work then, and John Paul’s ﬁrst job of the day is a tragedy, a cot death. A patronising CID oﬃcer turns up to add whatever the opposite of icing to the cake is. Shit to the shit? There’s just time for a Skype chat with his old dad, who’s sick and bedridden and has tubes coming out of his nose, before JP along with partner and best mate Andy are called to a disturbance at a house. Turns out – it’s probably no accident – that the terrifying thug Finch is there, with his gang of henchmen, and he carries out his earlier threat. It’s not John Paul but Andy who gets hammered, and battered, an attack so shockingly vicious I found it impossible to watch. Andy is left ﬁghting for his life. And that’s not the end of it. John Paul later goes back to the house, ﬁnds a gun, Finch turns up, JP shoots him dead. It’s hard not to cheer, until you realise what that means: that Graham won’t be appearing in the the rest of Good Cop. That’s one big loss; he
Nothing ﬂash … Warren Brown as John Paul Rocksavage in Good Cop
Last night's TV Rejection, violence, sickness … Good Cop is having a very bad day y
By Sam Wollaston really is a very good actor, the standout performance, a mesmerising – if terrifying – presence. Oh, and Andy dies, in hospital. OK, so we’re into the next day now, but still that’s a fairly full-on 48 hours for poor John Paul. Rejection, humiliation, tragic death, sickness, savage violence, lethal shooting, tragic death. Plus it’s pouring with rain the whole time. They really are laying on the opposite of icing thick. It’s almost Scandinavian in its bleakness. A new genre perhaps, north-west noir? The only respite to the misery comes when John Paul takes his top oﬀ to reveal pecs that only come from being a Thai-boxing champion (which Warren Brown is). And a comedy encounter with a comedy-scouser car thief. Hey, they put him in there, not
AND ANOTHER THING
Pop quiz: what famous question is Kristin Shepherd the answer to? Clue: next Wednesday, Channel 5.
me. Racists. Though to be fair you can probably get away with a tea leaf in a cop show. It’s good. Not perhaps as deeply absorbing as The Killing or The Bridge; I’m not as involved with John Paul to that extent. I like the fact that he’s just an ordinary bobby on the beat though, nothing special or ﬂash. That he’s ﬂawed. All the police are – Andy is a sexist knob (though still probably doesn’t deserved his hammering). There’s a nice sense of foreboding hanging over it. Charlie Brooker would see plenty of cop show cliches here. The rain, and the urban grime; the troubled protagonist burdened by the weight of his backstory and personal life; the good cop who turns out not to be so good etc. But truth is, a totally true-to-life police drama would probably be mainly about paperwork. Quite mundane Which is what British Cycling: The Road to Glory (Sky Atlantic) was. This could have done with a few sports -documentary cliches (whatever they are), a bit more of the drama of the race, rivalries, personalities, something, anything, to liven it up. What it really needed in fact was someone from outside Sky to be involved, rather than a programme for a TV company about a sports team sponsored by that TV company. The result is basically a corporate video, about a bunch of guys with laptops, talking management speak. “You’ve got to be thinking on the solution side and not on the problem side,” says Dave Brailsford, Mr British Cycling. “You can think so much about a problem. Let’s think: right, what’s the way forwards?” Then he gives us an exclusive look at his diary, at the meetings he’s got coming up in the next few days. And reveals the number of emails he currently has in his inbox: 195.
31.08.12 The Guardian 29
TV and radio
Film of the day The Departed (9pm, More4) Martin Scorsese’s remake of Infernal Aﬀairs is a wonderfully brash and violent mob opera, Leonardo DiCaprio going undercover to ensnare Jack Nicholson
Cash Britain, BBC1
Watch this Cash Britain 7.30pm, BBC1 If you were for some reason in any doubt that the ﬁnancial crisis has consequences for individuals, here is the documentary series to put you straight. Focused around a pawnbroker’s – a business one imagines as pretty much the same in boom times and bust – the show meets the shop’s customers, ranging from the relatively wealthy (a factory owner hocking diamonds to avoid laying oﬀ staﬀ ) to those at the sharp end of things (a woman seeking to pay oﬀ a high-interest loan before the waters close over her head). John Robinson
Parade’s End 9pm, BBC2 In wife Sylvia’s estimation, Christopher Tietjens is both “a paragon of honourable behaviour” and “the cruellest man I know”. She’s got a point, which is what makes him so fascinating as the adaptation of Ford Madox
Ford’s novels continues: he is so dutiful and decent that it’s hard for anyone to match his standards, let alone an unfaithful partner. The HBO star power can be distracting, but it’s compelling nonetheless. Jonathan Wright
Cropredy 2012 9pm, Sky Arts 1 Highlights from the “UK’s friendliest festival”, held in the small Oxfordshire village that gives the event its name. This year’s headliners, as ever, are Fairport Convention, as well as former founder Richard Thompson – and chip oﬀ the old block, his daughter Kami, who with her squeeze James Walbourne makes up the fabulous Dead Flamingoes. Talking of Squeeze, Cropredy also welcomes Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Diﬀord, whose songs of love and strife ought to mist the eyes of at least two generations present. Ali Catterall
6.0pm BBC News (S) 6.30 Regional News (S)
6.0pm Eggheads (S) 6.30 Celebrity MasterChef (S) The contestants ﬁnd out who has reached the next round.
6.0pm Local News (S) 6.30 ITV News (S)
6.30pm Hollyoaks (S) (AD) A surprise visitor at the McQueens’ has advice for Michaela.
7.0 The One Show (S) Chris Evans and Alex Jones host the live magazine. 7.30 Cash Britain (S) New six-part series following a family-run pawnbrokers and the stories behind some of items handed in.
7.0 Hidcote: A Garden For All Seasons (S) (AD) Behind the scenes of Hidcote Manor Garden in Gloucestershire, regarded as the epitome of the English country garden.
7.0 Emmerdale (S) (AD) Ashley has bad news for his children. 7.30 Uefa Super Cup Live (S) Champions League winners Chelsea take on Europa League cup holders Atletico Madrid. Kickoﬀ is at 7.45.
7.0 Channel 4 News (S) 7.30 Paralympic Games 2012 (S) Clare Balding and Ade Adepitan introduce coverage of athletics, wheelchair basketball, swimming, judo and archery.
8.0 EastEnders (S) (AD) Sharon and Tanya argue. 8.30 Miranda (R) (S) (AD) Miranda decides to give waitressing a go. Repeat of the ﬁrst series of Miranda Hart’s sitcom.
8.0 Mastermind (S) Specialist subjects include Shakespeare’s comedies, Duran Duran and the Shipping Forecast. 8.30 Gardeners’ World (S) Advice on perennial plant seeds and box plant problems.
9.0 In With The Flynns (S) Liam’s attempt at being a personal trainer goes awry. 9.30 Mrs Brown’s Boys (R) (S) Dermot and Maria prepare for their new arrival with a robotic baby.
9.0 Parade’s End (S) (AD) Despite a public reunion, Christopher and Sylvia’s relationship troubles continue in private. Benedict Cumberbatch and Rebecca Hall star.
10.0 BBC News (S) 10.25 Regional News And Weather (S) 10.35 Would I Lie To You? (R) (S) Rob Brydon hosts as Greg Davies, Konnie Huq, Phil Tufnell and Marcus Brigstocke join David Mitchell and Lee Mack.
10.0 QI (R) (S) Guests David Mitchell, Rob Brydon, Sandi Toksvig and Alan Davies join quiz host Stephen Fry. 10.30 Newsnight (S) Presented by Mishal Husain.
10.10 ITV News (S) 10.40 Local News (S) 10.45 Stay Alive (William Brent Bell, 2006) (S) Feeble teen horror starring Jon Foster and Samaire Armstrong.
10.30 The Last Leg With Adam Hills (S) The comedian presents an alternative review of the day’s Paralympics action.
11.05 Come Fly With Me (R) (S) (AD) FlyLo passengers are delayed on a ﬂight to Malaga. 11.35 The National Lottery (S) 11.45 EastEnders (S) (AD) Omnibus edition.
11.0 The Review Show At The Edinburgh Festival (S) Kirsty Wark and guests review Zadie Smith’s new novel. 11.50 Reading Festival Highlights (S) Including the Cure and the Maccabees.
Concert. Barry Douglas completes the LSO St Luke’s Beethoven Piano Sonata cycle by performing the composer’s Piano Sonata No 25 in G; and No 29 in B ﬂat (Hammerklavier). (R) 2.0 Afternoon On 3. From London’s Royal Albert Hall, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and associate guest conductor Andrew Manze perform Vaughan Williams’ Symphonies Nos 4, 5 and 6. (R) 4.30 In Tune. Sean Raﬀerty welcomes guests including conductor Riccardo Chailly, who brings the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra to the Proms with performances of Mendelssohn, Messiaen and Mahler. 7.0 BBC Proms 2012. In their second Prom live from the Royal Albert Hall, the Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Simon Rattle, perform
90.2-92.4 MHz 6.30 Breakfast. With Petroc Trelawny. 9.0 Essential Classics. With Rob Cowan. Including the Essential CD of the Week by Szymon Goldberg and the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Artist of the Week Andres Segovia and guest Paul Bailey. 11.0 Edinburgh International Festival 2012. Live from the Queen’s Hall, violinist Richard Tognetti directs the Australian Chamber Orchestra in an eclectic programme of works by CPE Bach, Scelsi, Grieg and Peteris Vasks. 1.0 Radio 3 Lunchtime
30 The Guardian 31.08.12
11.15 Alan Carr’s Summertime Specstacular 2 (R) (S) The comedian celebrates the Olympics with guests including Jonathan Ross, Tulisa, Keith Lemon, Mo Farah and Greg Rutherford. pieces by Brahms and Lutosławski. 9.30 A Symphony For Detroit. Petroc Trelawny presents a portrait of Detroit seen through its world-class orchestra, playing again after a six-month strike. (R) 10.15 BBC Proms 2012. Live from the Royal Albert Hall, the London premiere of guitarist Martin Taylor and conductor Guy Barker’s joint work The Spirit of Django. 11.30 World On 3. Mary Ann Kennedy presents a session by American folk singer Tom Paley, best known as a member of the New Lost City Ramblers, whom Bob Dylan once cited as a great inﬂuence. 1.0 Through The Night. Including music by Biber, Ana Milosavljevic, Skroup, Bartok, Handel, Jordi Cervello, Vaughan Williams, Dvorak, Martinu, Granados,
Reutter, Elgar, Rachmaninov, Spohr and Telemann.
92.4-94.6 MHz; 198kHz 6.0 Today. With Evan Davis and John Humphrys. 9.0 The Reunion. Sue MacGregor reunites ﬁve Asians who were expelled from Uganda in 1972. (R) 9.45 (LW) Act Of Worship. Led by Andrew Graystone. 9.45 (FM) Book of the Week: Leonardo And The Last Supper. By Ross King. Abridged and produced by Jane Marshall. 10.0 Woman’s Hour. With Jenni Murray. 11.0 Missing, Presumed. Part two of two. Eﬀorts to locate children who have disappeared. 11.30 Beauty of Britain. By Christopher Douglas and
Full TV listings For comprehensive programme details see the Guardian Guide every Saturday or go to tvlistings.guardian.co.uk/
6.0pm Andy Bates Street Feasts (R) (S) Andy visits a farmers’ market in Edinburgh. 6.30 5 News (S)
7.0 Frontline Police (R) (S) Rav Wilding joins oﬃcers as they search a suspected drug dealer’s ﬂat.
7.0pm Doctor Who (R) (S) (AD) The Doctor ﬁnds himself in the middle of the second world war where two evacuees and their mother need help.
8.0 Ice Road Truckers: Deadliest Roads (S) Lisa Kelly and GW Boles ﬁnd themselves on a hairraising route of narrow tunnels and crumbling cliﬀs in the Peruvian Andes.
8.0 Great Movie Mistakes 2011: Not In 3D (R) (S) Robert Webb counts down the most memorable movie mishaps of last year’s blockbusters.
9.0 Celebrity Big Brother: Live Eviction (S) Brian Dowling reveals which celebrity will be the fourth contestant to leave the house.
9.0 The Comedy Marathon Spectacular (S) Chris Ramsey and Jameela Jamil present highlights of this year’s eight-hour comedy marathon, the ﬁrst to be held at the Edinburgh Fringe.
10.30 Celebrity Big Brother’s Bit On The Side (S) Emma Willis and her panel are joined by the latest evicted housemate.
10.0 The Tape Face Tapes (S) Sketches and stand-up by silent comedian The Boy with Tape on His Face. 10.30 EastEnders (R) (S) (AD) Sharon and Tanya argue.
11.20 The Bachelor (S) Spencer Matthews takes the two remaining contestants on individual dates before revealing the winner. Last in the series.
11.0 Bad Education (R) (S) (AD) A new game has a bad eﬀect on the pupils. 11.30 Family Guy (R) (S) Peter injures his hand in an accident. 11.50 Family Guy (R) (S) Lois becomes a sex education teacher.
11.0 Paul Simon: Live At Webster Hall, New York (R) (S) A June 2011 concert by the singer, featuring songs including The Obvious Child, Kodachrome and Gone at Last.
Australian writer Ken Welsh’s 1971 travel guide. 4.0 (FM) Last Word. 4.30 (FM) Feedback. Listeners’ views. 5.0 (FM) PM. With Eddie Mair. 5.57 (LW) Live International One-Day Cricket. England v South Africa. 5.57 (FM) Weather 6.0 (FM) Six O’Clock News 6.30 (FM) Chain Reaction. Caitlin Moran interviews Jennifer Saunders. Last in the series. 7.0 (FM) The Archers. Vicky struggles to cope. 7.15 (FM) Front Row. An interview with tenor Alﬁe Boe. 7.45 (FM) Craven. By Amelia Bullmore. 8.0 (FM) Any Questions? From Hebden Bridge. 8.50 (FM) A Point of View. With John Gray.
9.0 Friday Drama: Freud: The Case Histories. Conclusion. By Sigmund Freud, dramatised by Deborah Levy. (R) 9.59 Weather 10.0 The World Tonight. With Robin Lustig. 10.45 Book At Bedtime: Pure. By Andrew Miller. Abridged by Jeremy Osborne. 11.0 Great Lives. Comedienne Natalie Haynes champions Roman poet Juvenal. (R) 11.30 Radio 4 Extra’s Comedy Club: On The Hour. Spoof news show, with Chris Morris. (R) 12.0 News And Weather 12.30 Book of the Week: Leonardo And The Last Supper. By Ross King. Abridged and produced by Jane Marshall. (R) 12.48 Shipping Forecast
Nicola Sanderson. 12.0 News 12.04 You And Yours. 12.45 The New Elizabethans. Proﬁle of Scottish politician Alex Salmond. 12.57 Weather 12.59 (LW) Live International One-Day Cricket. England v South Africa. 1.0 (FM) The World At One. Presented by James Robbins. 1.45 (FM) Poetic Justice. Mr Gee investigates neighbourhood rivalries in Edinburgh. Last in the series. 2.0 (FM) The Archers. David and Ruth make plans. (R) 2.15 (FM) Afternoon Drama: The Beneﬁt of Time. By Terri-Ann Brumby. (R) 3.0 (FM) Gardeners’ Question Time. The panel answers queries in Norfolk. 3.45 (FM) Hitch-Hiker’s Guide To Europe. New series. Mark Little celebrates
7.0pm World News Today (S) 7.30 BBC Proms 2012 (S) Martyn Brabbins leads the BBCSO and Chorus and the London Philharmonic Choir in Herbert Howells’ Hymnus Paradisi and Elgar’s First Symphony.
9.30 Imagine (R) (S) Paul Simon recalls the making of his groundbreaking 1986 album Graceland, and returns to South Africa to reunite with musicians who played on the record.
6.25pm Paralympic Games (S) Clare Balding and Ade Adepitan present coverage of swimming ﬁnals and athletics.
6.0pm ER (R) Benton is in for a surprise, and Carter struggles to return to normality.
7.30 Gok Cooks Chinese (R) (S) Gok Wan prepares some of his favourite family recipes, including pork and ginger soup, braised tofu on a spring onion omelette and dragon scallops in burning oil sauce.
7.0 House (R) As the team ﬁghts to keep Amber alive after the crash, an amnesic House tries to remember a vital symptom he saw before the accident.
E4 6.0pm The Big Bang Theory. Sheldon and Penny fall out over a game of paintball. 6.30 The Big Bang Theory. The pals try to start a conversation with a sci-ﬁ star. 7.0 Hollyoaks. Esther and Ruby dread their ﬁrst day of college. 7.30 How I Met Your Mother. Marshall and Lily elope. 8.0 The Big Bang Theory. Leonard confronts a bully from his past. 8.30 2 Broke Girls. Max persuades Caroline to join her in a drug trial. 9.0 My Stepmother Is An Alien. Sci-ﬁ comedy, with Kim Basinger. 11.10 Revenge. Emily and Daniel prepare to celebrate their engagement.
8.0 Grand Designs (R) (S) (AD) Kevin McCloud meets Daren Howarth and Adi Nortje, who are using ideas pioneered in 1970s New Mexico to build a home made from recycled materials.
8.0 Blue Bloods (R) (S) (AD) Danny spends a romantic weekend with Linda while keeping one eye on an investigation.
9.0 The Departed (Martin Scorsese, 2006) (S) (AD) Gripping mobster thriller starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon and Jack Nicholson.
9.0 Blue Bloods (R) (S) (AD) Things turn violent when a security team prevents Jamie and Renzulli from entering a church.
10.0 Boardwalk Empire (R) (S) (AD) Nucky springs a surprise on his enemies at a Memorial Day service. Eli questions his allegiances and Jimmy is taught a painful lesson.
11.55 Embarrassing Bodies (R) (S) Revisiting patients from previous shows, including a woman who needed major dental work.
Radio 4 Extra Digital only
6.0 Sherlock Holmes With Carleton Hobbs 6.30 Rogue Male 7.0 The Young Postmen 7.30 What’s So Funny? With Ed Byrne 8.0 The Navy Lark 8.30 The Burkiss Way 9.0 Hazelbeach 9.30 Whispers 10.0 Five Summers And Johnny Onion 11.0 A Bunch Of Fives 11.15 Perfect Timing 12.0 The Navy Lark 12.30 The Burkiss Way 1.0 Sherlock Holmes With Carleton Hobbs 1.30 Rogue Male 2.0 Ladies Of Letters Log On 2.15 This Sceptred Isle 2.30 Book At Beachtime: EM Forster’s A Passage To India 2.45 A Life of Chekhov 3.0 Five Summers And Johnny Onion
11.05 The Wire (R) (S) Avon refuses to take Stringer’s advice about a truce with Marlo, and Brother Mouzone returns on a mission of revenge.
4.0 The 4 O’Clock Show 5.0 No Commitments 5.30 The Young Postmen 6.0 Journey Into Space 6.30 Doctor Who and the Creature from the Pit 7.0 The Navy Lark 7.30 The Burkiss Way 8.0 Sherlock Holmes With Carleton Hobbs 8.30 Rogue Male 9.0 A Bunch Of Fives 9.15 Perfect Timing 10.0 Comedy Club: What’s So Funny? With Ed Byrne 10.30 Nigel And Earl Sort Out The World 11.0 This Is Craig Brown 11.15 Date With Fate 11.30 On The Hour 12.0 Journey Into Space 12.30 Doctor Who and the Creature From The Pit 1.0 Sherlock Holmes With Carleton Hobbs 1.30 Rogue Male 2.0 Hazelbeach 2.30 Whispers 3.0 Five Summers
Film4 7.10pm Bedazzled. Fantasy comedy remake, starring Brendan Fraser. 9.0 Die Hard 4.0. Action thriller sequel, starring Bruce Willis. 11.30 The Final Destination. Horror sequel, starring Bobby Campo. FX 6.0pm Leverage. The Leverage team tries to con a corrupt ﬁght promoter. 7.0 NCIS. A marine’s wife kills an intruder. 8.0 NCIS. Tony disappears during an undercover operation. 9.0 NCIS. Tony’s father is found inside a car with a dead body in the boot. 10.0 Falling Skies. Tom is reunited with his old mentor Professor Arthur Manchester. 11.0 Family Guy. Brian and Stewie embark on an epic journey. 11.30 Family Guy. Peter searches for his real father. 12.0 American Dad! Stan prays to God for a new friend. ITV2 6.0pm The Jeremy Kyle Show USA. The host takes his successful talk-show stateside. 7.0 Peter Andre’s Bad Boyfriend Club. Two more men are given makeovers. 8.0 You’ve Been Framed Rides Again! Compilation show. 9.0 Mamma Mia! Musical comedy, starring Meryl Streep. 11.15 Take Me Out. An athlete, a farmer and a rock musician take part. Sky1 6.0pm The Simpsons. Marge rediscovers her ﬂair for art. 6.30 Futurama. Leela faces a diﬃcult choice. 7.0 The Simpsons. Lisa develops a crush on a teacher. 7.30 Raising Hope. Burt’s wealthy And Johnny Onion 4.0 A Bunch of Fives 4.15 Perfect Timing 5.0 No Commitments 5.30 The Young Postmen
Digital and 198 kHz after R4 8.30 Business Daily 8.50 From Our Own Correspondent 9.0 News 9.06 HARDtalk 9.30 The Strand 9.50 Witness 10.0 World Update 11.0 World Brieﬁng 11.30 Science In Action 11.50 From Our Own Correspondent 12.0 World Have Your Say 12.30 Business Daily 12.50 Sports News 1.0 News 1.06 HARDtalk 1.30 World Football 2.0 Newshour 3.0 World Brieﬁng 3.30 The Strand 3.50 From Our Own Correspondent 4.0 News 4.06 HARDtalk 4.30 Sport
Trollied, Sky 1 parents spend Thanksgiving with the Chances. 8.0 The Simpsons. Homer and Marge try to save their marriage. 8.30 The Simpsons. With the guest voice of Sacha Baron Cohen. 9.0 Trollied. New series. Gavin is promoted to head oﬃce. 9.30 Trollied. Lorraine unveils a new line of products that leaves Julie unimpressed. 10.0 A Touch Of Cloth. Spoof crime drama, by Charlie Brooker. 12.0 An Idiot Abroad. Karl Pilkington visits Machu Picchu in Peru. Sky Arts 1 6.0pm Video Killed The Radio Star. Bob Geldof discusses the Boomtown Rats’ music videos. 6.30 Suggs’ Italian Job. The singer takes a ride on a Vespa. 7.0 Architecture School. Tensions rise as the project falls behind schedule. 7.30 Virgin Virtuosos. Keith Allen tries to re-create a work by Canaletto. 8.0 All You Need Is Love. Producer Sam Phillips recalls how he discovered Elvis Presley. 9.0 Cropredy 2012. Featuring Fairport Convention, Squeeze and Joan Armatrading. 10.30 Seasick Steve At Isle Of Wight 2011. The American blues musician’s performance. 11.0 Oasis Live At The City Of Manchester Stadium. The band’s 2005 homecoming gig. TCM 6.55pm Monte Walsh. Western, starring Lee Marvin. 9.0 Collateral Damage. Action thriller, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. 11.05 Batman Returns. Comicbook adventure sequel, starring Michael Keaton.
Collateral Damage, TCM Today 4.50 Witness 5.0 World Brieﬁng 5.30 World Business Report 6.0 World Have Your Say 7.0 World Brieﬁng 7.30 Scott’s Legacy 7.50 From Our Own Correspondent 8.0 News 8.06 The BBC Africa Debate 9.0 Newshour 10.0 World Brieﬁng 10.30 World Business Report 11.0 World Brieﬁng 11.30 The Strand 11.50 Sports News 12.0 World Brieﬁng 12.30 World Football 1.0 World Brieﬁng 1.30 World Business Report 1.50 From Our Own Correspondent 2.0 News 2.06 HARDtalk 2.30 World Football 3.0 World Brieﬁng 3.30 The Strand 3.50 Witness 4.0 News 4.06 Assignment 4.30 Scott’s Legacy 4.50 From Our Own Correspondent 5.0 World Brieﬁng 5.20 Sports News 5.30 The 5th Floor
31.08.12 The Guardian 31
On the web For tips and all manner of crossword debates go to guardian.co.uk/crosswords
Sudoku no 2,280
Hard. Fill the grid so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1-9. Printable version at guardian.co.uk/sudoku
6 9 7 8 5 4 3 2 1
22 23 24
1 Police station (3,4) 8 Lift (7) 9 (Dough made with) cornmeal (7) 10 Covered with hair (7) 11 Firecracker (5) 13 Explanation — interpretation (9) 15 Electrical device in an internalcombustion engine (5,4) 18 Salted ’n’ vinegared item? (5) 21 (US) aircraft carrier — cropped haircut (4-3) 22 Caterer (anag) (7) 23 Lively movement, usually in 3/4 time (7) 24 Guess (the future) (7)
1 Manages (5) 2 Rice seasoned with spices and cooked with meat or vegetables (5) 3 Skidding manoeuvre in a car (9,4) 4 Female bird (with a proud partner?) (6) 5 Graph of educational progression? (8,5) 6 Dog resembling a greyhound (6) 7 Sea between Greece and Turkey (6) 12 Quick witty remark (4)
14 Chooses (4) 15 Most secure (6) 16 Indiﬀerence — lack of interest (6) 17 Computer (6) 19 Native of Basra, perhaps (5) 20 Fold in a skirt (5) Stuck? For help call 0906 751 0039 or text GUARDIANQ followed by a space, the day and date the crossword appeared another space and the CLUE reference to 85010 (e.g GUARDIANQ Wednesday24 Down20). Calls cost 77p a minute from a BT Landline. Calls from other networks may vary and mobiles will be considerably higher. Texts cost 50p a clue plus standard network charges. Service supplied by ATS. Call 0844 836 9769 for customer service (charged at local rate, 2p a min from a BT landline).
1 8 2 9 6 3 4 7 5
4 3 5 7 2 1 6 9 8
9 5 6 3 1 7 8 4 2
8 1 3 2 4 9 5 6 7
2 7 4 5 8 6 9 1 3
5 4 8 1 9 2 7 3 6
3 2 9 6 7 8 1 5 4
7 6 1 4 3 5 2 8 9
4 5 6 3
A R E O V E A R B
J E L L Y B E A N
P A Y F R E E Z E
C E M Y E Y R E R S T N C H L F P E A S E G U N I R C A R U N N E R
Solution no 1306
17 17 14
Medium. Fill in the grid so that each run of squares adds up to the total in the box above or to the left. Use only numbers 1-9, and never use a number more than once per run (a number may recur in the same row, in a separate run). Printable version at guardian. co.uk/kakuro A great range of puzzle books is available from Guardian Books. To order, visit guardianbooks.co.uk or call 0845 606 4232.
Solution no 13,201 E V O Y L U S M T E R A W W E I G R D D O
34 16 16
U L A P P P D R A A G S Q U D E E E N
7 8 9
Kakuro no 1,307
B O N P U S S K A I J I U M A P E P R
1 2 3
Solution to no 2,279
32 The Guardian 31.08.12
6 7 8 9
4 5 6
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1 2 3
3 7 9 1 9 8 1 3 1 3 6 2 4 9 8 6 7 8 9 5 6 1 3 3 7 9 1 9 8
1 8 2 6 7 3 9 7 5 9 8 5 7 3 9 1 8 2 6
3 1 9 8 7 1 2 8 6 9 9 5 7 9 4 2 5 2 1 8 6 7 3 8 9 7 8 9 9 6 8 9 5 3 1 4 2 5 4 2 8 6 7 9 3 1 9 8 7 1 2 8 6 9
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Quick crossword no 13,202
Published on Sep 25, 2012