Death of the Author: Victor Hugo

Death of the Author: Victor Hugo

To complement our retrospective on ‘Les Miserables’ our second ‘Death of the Author’ features the larger than life self-regarding genius of Victor Hugo Whilst it is ‘Les Miserables’ that truly cemented his reputation, at the time of its release Hugo’s fame had already reached something equivalent to Beatlemania. The advance...

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The Twilight Zone at the Ambassador’s Theatre

The Twilight Zone at the Ambassador’s Theatre

  ‘The Twilight Zone’ originally ran (in flickering black and white naturally) from 1959-1964. For many of the original audience, Rod Serling’s twist-happy morality tales were their first introduction to science fiction. Whilst ‘Twilight Zone’ took some cues from earlier 50s genre works like ‘Tales of Tomorrow’! and ‘Dimension X’,...

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The Idiot at the Coronet

The Idiot at the Coronet

Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s The Idiot was published in 1864 and is frequently held up as one of the artistic high points of the Russian literary boom of the 19th century.  In the spirit of full disclosure, I have not read The Idiot, so I deemed it...

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This is America: James Ellroy’s Perfidia

This is America: James Ellroy’s Perfidia

There are some authors whose public persona are so outsized that they can’t help but overspill into their fiction. Generally these writers are dead: the ‘great men of letters’ seem to have been a decidedly pre-#MeToo phenomenon. The hard drinking lives and frequently unpalatable beliefs of authors like Hemingway or...

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Vice

Vice

Comedian cum-Late Night host Stephen Colbert famously complained that ‘reality has a well-known liberal bias’; a blithe statement to be sure, but one which has become something of a rallying cry for all distressed by the truth-averse populists increasingly in the driving seats of our democracies. Certainly writer-director Adam Mckay’s...

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Retrospective: Heart Of Darkness

Retrospective: Heart Of Darkness

Joseph Conrad’s Heart Of Darkness is only 40,000 words long; a novella so slim that I picked up my first copy as a free give-away that came with a newspaper. However according to Harold Bloom  those 40,000 words have been dissected and analysed more than any other work of literature...

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Black Mirror: Bandersnatch

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch

  Black Mirror has been running since 2011, concurrent with Charlie Brooker’s slow transformation from a pale angry man shouting at his television into practically the platonic ideal of the Guardian reading metropolitan elite. If Brooker has becoming less angry in his public persona, Black Mirror’s consistently bleak [give or...

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Don Rodolfo at the Soho Theatre

Don Rodolfo at the Soho Theatre

Since 2001, when Shrek exploded onto the scene to the searing fanfare of Smash Mouth’s All Star, any attempt at telling a classic adventure story has come with a snide soupcon of winking irony. Damsels in distress, noble knights and dragons are deemed so old hat that new takes on...

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Francois Chartier at Plus One

Francois Chartier at Plus One

Whilst many artistic disciplines are almost exclusively made up of art school graduates, Hyperrealism is renowned for how often its practitioners are drawn to it from unusual disciplines. Pedro Campos, for example, arrived at his monumental works of oil and canvas after a protracted sojourn in art restoration. Francois Chartier...

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Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Starting from John Ford’s The Searchers which subverted John Wayne’s usual patriarchal image by adding a soupcon of racism and blood thirst to his usually static presence, the ‘revisionist western’ has gradually expanded to encompass the entire genre. Revisionist westerns make the radical argument that perhaps the Wild West was...

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