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Manchester reviewed
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Manchester film reviews

A Dangerous Method - the love triangle

A Dangerous Method

Screened at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Reviewed by Anne Ryan February 2012

 

There is a long tradition of films treating psychoanalysis, from its initial introduction to the Hollywood community with the pre-war influx of intellectuals fleeing Nazi persecution – as shown in Hitchcock’s ‘Spellbound’ to the more comic ‘Analyze This’ – films which increasingly show that the analyst may be more screwed up than the patient.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Should adults be able to donate their own human tissue to art?

Debate on Donating Human Tissue to Art

at the Bluecoat, Liverpool

Reviewed by Denis Joe February 2012

 

Should living people be able to donate their own human tissue to art? Now there's a question that's straight forward and clear, but the answers show that society has a big discussion on its hands in answering it. The Panel introducing this discussion were:


Andy Miah, Academic and specialist in cultural ethics,
Dominic Hughes, BBC Health Correspondent
Canon Jules Gomes, Artistic Director of Liverpool Anglican Cathedral
Rt Hon Jane Kennedy, Former MP for Liverpool Wavertree and Minister of State for Health.

Chaired by Roger Phillips of BBC Radio Merseyside

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Call That Art? - The Art Lounge

Call That Art? A solo exhibition by Davlo

At The Art Lounge, Upstairs, Beehive Pub, New Mills

Reviewed by Simon Belt March 2012

 

The title of this exhibition is both delightfully bold whilst covering itself with the get out clause of being ironic and playful to soften the impact - Call That Art? How very clever, how very profound, and how it taps into the widespread recognition of the rip-off Britain's New Labour fawning over the Britart artists, and their repacking of a lot of tat as art.

 

This exhibition offers a rare opportunity to view paintings, prints, collages and 3D pieces of this genre that seldom make their way into gallery space. Challenging aspects of modern living and society and indeed some commonly held views about what art is. So how exactly does Salford born urban artist Davlo answer the question behind the exhibition through his art? Very well actually, with great aplomb and a good deal of humour actually.

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Manchester film reviews

Travelling Light by National Theatre

Travelling Light by National Theatre

Screened at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Reviewed by Anne Ryan February 2012

 

With The Artist and Martin Scorsese’s ‘Hugo’ film seems to be looking back to its roots, and in Nicholas Wright’s play Travelling Light we see the people who made Hollywood. Thesea are the eastern European immigrants who brought their story telling skills to the new medium and, perhaps more than anyone else, created the American identity. Men like Louis B Mayer who chose 4th of July for his birthday and established the Hardy family as the American archetype.

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Manchester book reviews

Apocrypha by Peter Clayfield

Apocrypha by Peter Clayfield

Reviewed by John Hutchinson February 2012

 

A recent local addition to the North West’s literary scene is a novel, Apocrypha, by local author, Peter Clayfield, if novel is the right description, for this is a disturbing and rather violent fantasy. In fact, it reads like a graphic novel or a novelised version of a computer game.


Apocrypha is really a science fiction novel and a thriller combined, set in the future after a catastrophic nuclear war has devastated the earth. Its central character, Damon Carter-Brown, is a young scientist who has discovered time travel whilst researching in America. Everything is going for him at the start of the novel. He is shown convincing a Senator to invest public money into his research, is recently married to the delectable Val and a future teeming with success awaits him.

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Manchester music reviews

Momus at IABF

Momus @ International Anthony Burgess Foundation

To be reviewed by Dave Porter March 2012

 

Momus – aka Nick Currie – is one of the more interesting characters to have come out of and endured the ‘80s music scene. Never your average pop star, his protean output now encompasses roles as novelist, art critic, gallery tour guide and journalist.

 

A protege of the Scottish Postcard scene – his first band the Happy Family featured members of Josef K – Momus fittingly takes his nominal cue from the Greek god of mockery. He quickly outgrew the jangle of indie pop to carve out an outré career as purveyor of synthesised pop with the sensibilities of Kylie and the lyrical rumblings of Nick Cave.

 

Records titles such as Tender Pervert and The Poison Boyfriend give a hint to his predilections. Despite being signed to Creation Records by fellow Scot Alan McGee, Momus looked unlikely to achieve the pop stardom he craved, but has doggedly pursued an artistic vision which has seen him outflank many of his contemporaries.

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Manchester book reviews

Panic on a Plate

Panic on a Plate

by Rob Lyons (Societas Imprint Academic, 2011)

Reviewed by Richard Crawford February 2012

 

Rob Lyons tells us all to chillax about food in this short, wide-ranging polemic.

 

Approaching Panic on a Plate, I was looking forward to a dose of common sense and rational argument. Something along the lines of Ben Goldacre’s Bad Science or Francis Wheen’s How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World. An antidote to food scares. The reality was more wide-ranging and more thought-provoking, but also less satisfying.

 

Lyons argues that, over the millennia, the big problem that humanity has had with its food is a lack of it. There was also the fact that it was usually the same boring thing, meal after meal. Now these problems are essentially solved and we are ignoring that achievement and instead making up new problems that have only a thin relationship with reality.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

My Five New Friends

My Five New Friends by Oliver Braid

At The Royal Standard, Liverpool

Reviewed by Denis Joe February 2012

 

There is something very romantic about The Royal Standard. It is not situated in the City but in what used to be a garage workshop just outside of the city, near the waterfront. So it is not easy to find, but it is well worth visiting (and with satnavs and Google maps, it’s easy enough). The organisers have made a great job of putting on this event (my first time at this venue) and show a great deal of enthusiasm for the work.

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Manchester film reviews

Carnage

Carnage, Directed by Roman Polanski

Screened at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Reviewed by Anne Ryan February 2012

 

Sartre said that hell is other people, he must have had the four characters in this film in mind. Here are four people whose flaws are magnified by contact with each other.

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Manchester film reviews

Haywire with Gina Carano

Haywire and female action heroes

Reviewed by Ian Betts January 2012


Gina Carano is an extraordinary woman: star of American Gladiators and professional Mixed Martial Arts, she’s a lethal purveyor of rib-busting kicks and jaw-shattering blows. Undefeated until her recent encounter with Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Santos (has since been accused of steroid use), Carano is known for her untarnished good looks, indomitable grit and killer moves such as the ‘rear-naked chokehold’.

 

She’s no lady... well, not in the Victorian sense of the word. She was recently quoted as saying, “I think everybody should get punched in the face once in a while just to, like, wake them up, you know?”

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