Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Days in New York...


For a full explanation, please see the start of the countdown.


Avenue Q
(at the Golden Theater, New York)
Hilariously funny and consistently entertaining, much more so than any other musical I've ever seen. Can't recommend this highly enough to anyone who enjoys a good laugh.


'Film addict' Lucas on Clone Wars by Rajesh Mirchandani
(from BBC News)
Preview of the new Star Wars film, out a week Friday in the US and UK. Includes some quotes from George Lucas and a pair of video interviews.

Review of The X-Files: I Want to Believe by Dave Bradley
(from SFX)
Another fairly scathing review of the new X-sequel, though the feedback comments nicely offer different perspectives.

Articles: Hamlet reviews

It was press night at the RSC production of Hamlet this evening, so naturally the first reviews are beginning to come in already.

They all seem very positive -- starred reviews all seem to give 4 out of 5 -- if insistent that Tennant is a good Hamlet but not the best ever. I'd bet that not all of these critics could agree on who is the best ever though, so I don't think anyone should be worried by such empty, obvious and easy criticism. Elsewhere, Patrick Stewart receives universal (and undoubtedly deserved) praise.

The following are the reviews I've read so far, in alphabetical order by article title. The first is an exception, however, being a review of an earlier preview performance; if you're not looking to read them all, allow me to recommend those of The Guardian and The Telegraph.

David Tennant's Hamlet by John Morrison
Review of a preview performance of Hamlet, which is entirely sold out. Morrison thinks Tennant "isn't bad as Hamlet, but he doesn't (yet) bring out the many different dimensions of the role". There's still plenty time for him to settle into the part, of course, so I'm quite glad I'll be going at the end of September.

David Tennant: thrills abound in Doctor Who Hamlet by Charles Spencer
"this is a gripping Hamlet that could become great if Tennant finds the courage to raise the dramatic stakes still further."

Dr Who's David Tennant as Hamlet at the Courtyard, Stratford by Benedict Nightingale
(from Times Online)
"I’ve seen bolder Hamlets and more moving Hamlets, but few who kept me so riveted throughout."

Review: David Tennant in Hamlet by Caroline Briggs
(from BBC News)
Largely positive, though shares the common views on Tennant's performance.

Review of Hamlet by Michael Billington
Tennant "is a fine Hamlet whose virtues, and occasional vices, are inseparable from the production itself... This is a Hamlet of quicksilver intelligence, mimetic vigour and wild humour: one of the funniest I've ever seen... active, athletic, immensely engaging". (Also includes a list of top 10 modern Hamlets -- apparently 1958 counts as modern, and 2000 seems to be the cut-off date.)

Articles: French Crime Wave

Thanks to The French Crime Wave season at New York City's Film Forum, here's a selection of articles I've read on the films included and the season itself. (Unfortunately, I'm only in the States for the first week of the five-week season.)

Gallic Gangsters, They’re Funny That Way by Terrence Rafferty
(from The New York Times)
A thematic overview of Film Forum's series covering a good number of the films.

A Noir Classic Makes It Back From the Blacklist by Michael Sragow
(originally from The New York Times)
Interesting article about Rififi, mixing analysis and behind-the-scenes detail.

Noir, French Style by V.A. Musetto
(from New York Post)
Very brief preview, picking out a couple of the Post's film editor's favourites.

Six Decades of French Noir Come to Film Forum by Elena Oumano
(from The Village Voice)
Another brisk-feeling preview, but with a bit more meat on its bones.