From Matilda to Stormzy: A Complete Guide to This Week’s Entertainment | Culture


Going out – Saturday Mag illo

Going out: Cinema

Glass Onion: A Mystery of the Blades
Out now & Netflix on December 23
Daniel Craig serves up another bucket of his best Kentucky Fried accent work as Benoit Blanc, the Deep South’s answer to Sherlock Holmes, capitalizing on the riveting response to Knives Out with essentially more of the same, only this time the mystery plays out on an idiot tech brother’s private island.

Matilda
Out now
A heart-pounding version of one of Roald Dahl’s best-loved childhood stories is hitting theaters and is worth the admission price for Emma Thompson’s terrifying Miss Trunchbull alone, but there are also some short but spectacular twists to enjoy from Stephen Graham and Andrea Riseborough as Wormwood’s vulgar parents.

Bones and all
Out now
From Call Me By Your Name director Luca Guadagnino comes another story about dreamy teen romance, but this time with a fun twist: the central couple are cannibals. Timothée Chalamet and Taylor Russell play the man-eating couple we’ve been curiously looking for, as they make their way through the Midwestern United States in the 1980s.

What do we see when we look Bee the sky?
Out now
We’re all familiar with the Hollywood rom-com device of a chance encounter between strangers leading to more, but this magical German-Georgian drama takes that gamble to unexpected places, when the star-crossed lovers in question wake up impossibly transformed and therefore not in be able to meet before their scheduled date. Catherine Bray


Going out: Performances

Black pink.
Hi-Vis… Blackpink. Photo: YG Entertainment

Black pink
The O2, London, November 30 and December 1
The world’s biggest girl group crash-land in London for two arena shows in support of their No. 1 album, Born Pink. Packed with nods to hip-hop, pop and R&B, their sleek, chant-heavy K-pop anthems seem to come to life well assisted by lasers and smoke machines in the cavernous setting of the O2. Michael Cragg

Biceps
December 1 to 3; tour begins Brighton
Belfast-born, London-based DJ producers Andrew Ferguson and Matthew McBriar cap off a stellar year headlining the Glastonbury’s West Holts stage with this three-day UK run. The pulsating new single Water, which mixes breakbeat and house, should fit nicely alongside 2021’s No. 2 album Isles and its collection of bangers. MC

Now Civilization Orchestra
The fire station, Sunderland, November 27
Conceived by Tomorrow’s Warriors founder Gary Crosby, the innovative Nu Jazz Orchestra from the UK was created to fuse genres, generations and cultural backgrounds. This performance celebrates Joni Mitchell’s collaborations with jazz giant Charles Mingus, featuring the powerful jazz soul singer Eska in the role of Mitchell. John Forham

Paul Lewis plays Schubert
Turner Sims Concert Hall, Southampton, November 29; on tour until Mar 7
In four programmes, which he will be touring in two seasons next year, Paul Lewis will give an overview of Schubert’s piano sonatas. Early, middle period and late works are included in each recital, so Lewis begins with the E-flat major Sonata D568, followed by the Sonata in A minor D784 and the major D major Sonata D850. Andrew Clemens


Going out: Art

David Altmejd sculpture at White Cube.
Hare transplant… David Altmejd sculpture in White Cube. Photo: White Cube/David Westwood

David Altmejd
White Cube Mason’s Yard, London, until January 14
Surreal hybrid creatures, including hares crossed with humans, by a sculptor of the uncanny. Altmejd is fascinated by the face – and its destruction. An Altmejd bust often has the skin peeled off to reveal a horror within or floating enigmatically disembodied. Arcimboldo meets Bacon in awkward situations.

Frida Kallo
Reel Store, Coventry, until January 29
Not an old-fashioned exhibition of her art, but an “immersive” experience that takes you through the life of the Mexican painter. What a story. Kahlo’s intensely illustrated diaries are used to provide a first-hand multimedia account of her revolutionary politics, turbulent marriage, physical challenges, and triumph as a modern icon.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Natural History Museum, London, to 1until July 2
Even as we destroy nature, we obsessively capture its beauty, as humans have done since the Ice Age. The latest animal photos, taken by enthusiasts of all ages, fill this popular annual exhibit, which includes Britta Jaschinski’s bones of animals killed by mining, and Clay Bolt’s bee at the Golden Gate.

Ken Kiff
Gallery Carl Freedman, Margate, untiluntil February 5
A fresh look at this figurative painter who died in 2001. Kiff’s art is cheerfully sensual and exuberantly dreamy. He depicts lovers in a mottled paradise of melancholy colours. There are echoes of Gustave Moreau and Odilon Redon in this unabashed feast for the eyes that express a personal vision. Jonathan Jones


Going out: Phase

Birth in Birmingham Rep.
Present tense…Church of the Nativity in Birmingham Rep. Photo: Geraint Lewis

Birth!
Birmingham Rep, until January 7
Adapted by Debbie Isitt, creator of the original film, this hit musical is set at a school in the run-up to Christmas – and a particularly wacky nativity scene. Miriam Gillinson

Peter Kay
Manchester AO Arena, Dec. 2; touring until August 11
The king of observational comedy returns 11 years after completing the most successful stand-up tour of all time. Can his new material compete with those iconic, stubborn British routines of the early ’00s? Either way, Kay’s ability to turn everyday life into unfettered joy is a gift never to be smelled. Rachel Aroesti

Baghdaddy
Royal Court Theatre, London, until December 17
Jasmine Naziha Jones’ debut performance is about a girl of Iraqi descent who grows up in Great Britain, against the backdrop of the Gulf War. It is directed by Milli Bhatia, who did such a brilliant job on Seven Methods of Killing Kylie Jenner. MG

English National Ballet: Raymonda
Bristol Hippodrome, SatNov. 26; Mayflower, Southampton, November 30 to December 3
Tamara Rojo’s complete rewrite of the 1898 ballet, originally set during the Crusades, now set in the Crimean War, with a protagonist inspired by Florence Nightingale. Rojo retains Marius Petipa’s original steps, so this exuberant production is full of classical brilliance and jumps along on the Glazunov score. Lyndsey Winship


Stay indoors - Saturday Mag illo

Stay inside: Stream

The cast of We Are Not Alone.
Blue material… We are not alone. Photo: Vishal Sharma/©UKTV

We’re not alone
November 28, 9pm, UKTV Play & Dave
Joe Thomas and Vicki Pepperdine are alien conquerors who reckon with human shortcomings in a one-off comedy from the writers of the hit sitcom Ghosts. The premise might excuse ridiculously goofy face paint and some route-one sight gags, but the cast — which also includes Ellie White, Rob Delaney, and Amanda Abbington — promises quality laughs, too.

The patient
November 30, Disney+
Rare is the effervescent modern drama with no existing hook, but The Patient – neither a book adaptation, nor a reboot, nor a rehash of real events – proves a novel idea and some great chemistry is all you really need. Steve Carell stars as a therapist kidnapped by his murderous patient (Domhnall Gleeson) in an intimate, brilliantly acted two-hander.

Willow
November 30, Disney+
Thirty-four years later, Warwick Davies reprises his role as the titular wizard in this TV series, the sequel to Ron Howard’s family-friendly fantasy adventure based on a story by George Lucas. It weaves together original characters (Joanne Whalley’s Sorsha, Brownie couple Rool and Franjean) with a slew of fresh faces to satisfy nostalgics and new converts alike.

Simon Schama’s history today
November 27, 9.15pm, iPlayer & BBC Two
From his birth – in London during the blitz – to the global turmoil that accompanied his eighth decade, Simon Schama has certainly lived in interesting times. In this new triptych, he examines the history of his life, with a special focus on the cultural giants who have shaped it, from Boris Pasternak to Nina Simone to Ai Weiwei. RA


Stay inside: Spell

Warhammer 40,000 Darktide.
All smiles… Warhammer 40,000 Darktide. Photo: Fatshark

Warhammer 40,000: Dark Tide
Out November 30, PC, Xbox
A fantasy sci-fi shooter in which four players try to stop hordes of enemies from overwhelming a city, using guns, chainsaws and other striking physical weapons.

Ship of fools
Available now, all platforms
In this interesting-looking multiplayer, you and a friend (or three) man a ship as you battle sea monsters, weather storms, and run frantically between cannons. So is McDonald


Stay inside: albums

Stormy.
He means it… a new album from Stormzy. Photo: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for MTV

Stormzy – This is what i mean
Out now
Created at a music camp on Essex’s Osea Island, the third album from rapper, singer and all-around gamechanger Stormzy (above) finds him in a more mellow mood. The singles Hide & Seek and Firebabe dig into his more spiritual side and slow down the pace, the latter featuring soulful vocals from newcomer and labelmate Debbie.

Caitlin Rose – We love you
Out now
Nine years after the release of her acclaimed third album, The Stand-In, Nashville alt-country troubadour Caitlin Rose returns. Almost completed in early 2020, before the lockdown changed everything, Cazimi feels like a record full of emotional cleansing, especially on the rousing single Nobody’s Sweetheart.

Waajeed – Memoirs of Hi-Tech Jazz
Out now
Detroit producer Robert O’Bryant’s propulsive third album, as Waajeed, was created specifically as a soundtrack for long car rides. Deftly hopping through house, hip-hop, jazz and disco, it’s an escapist’s dream.

2manydjs – As heard on Radio Soulwax Pt 2
Out now
To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the groundbreaking remix and mashup opus by Belgian brothers David and Stephen Dewaele has been re-released and will also debut on streaming services. With the Stooges rubbing shoulders with Salt-N-Pepa and Dolly Parton getting to grips with Röyksopp, it’s a welcome reminder of early ’00s excess. MC


Stay inside: Brain food

Robert Downey Sr.
Higher Service… Robert Downey Sr. Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

sr
Dec. 2, Netflix
Countercultural filmmaker Robert Downey Sr takes center stage in this carefully crafted documentary made over three years. Director Chris Smith outlines an often underground career, as does Sr’s relationship with his son, Avengers star Robert Downey Jr.

Sold a story
podcast
This fascinating series explores the ‘whole language theory’ of teaching reading to children, the effectiveness of which has been disproven but which continues to be promoted in schools. Emily Hanford investigates a publisher who made millions promoting the idea.

The never-ending conversation
Online
An AI-generated endless conversation between filmmaker Werner Herzog and philosopher Slavoj Žižek feels like a headache-inducing proposal, but this experiment by programmer Giacomo Miceli is actually an ingenious meditation on the possibilities of digital deepfaking. Ammar Kalia

Leave a Comment