Saturday Review

Saturday Review

Tom Sutcliffe and guests discuss the week’s cultural highlights on BBC Radio 4.

  • Updated:
    Weekly
  • Episodes available:
    Indefinitely help

Recent episodes (10)

  • Theatre: Carmen Disruption, Film: Home From Home, Novel: Caryl Phillips, and Sonia Delaunay exhibition 18 Apr 15

    Sat, 18 Apr 15

    Duration:
    43 mins

    Carmen Disruption is Simon Stephens' radical reworking of Bizet's opera, exploring the place where the actor becomes the character they're playing. Home From Home, a 4 hour long cinematic prequel to the 53 hour long TV series Heimat, tells the tale of a fictional rural German village from the 1840s to the 1990s. Caryl Phillips' latest novel The Lost Child reimagines Wuthering Heights through several interweaving narratives. And an exhibition of the work of Sonia Delaunay at Tate Modern is designed as a radical reassessment of her importance as an artist, showcasing her originality and creativity across the twentieth Century.

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  • Eric Ravilious, Force Majeure, Ice Rink On The Estate, After Electra, Jesse Armstrong 11 Apr 15

    Sat, 11 Apr 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    Eric Ravilious was one of the finest watercolourists that the UK has ever produced. Born in 1903, he died in 1942 while on duty as an official war artist. Does a new exhibition of his work reveal his genius? In Swedish film 'Force Majeure', an avalanche during a family skiing holiday causes no physical damage but opens fissures in the happy family structure. Olympic gold medalists Torvill & Dean have a new TV series: 'Ice Rink On The Estate', attempting to turn a group of kids from a deprived Nottingham housing estate are turned into an ice dance troupe. There are very few roles for older actresses, but in April de Angelis' play 'After Electra', the main character is 81 years. What difference does it make? The co-writer of Peep Show, Jesse Armstrong has written his debut novel - Can a successful witty TV writer easily make the transfer?

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  • Death of a Salesman, While We’re Young, Alfred Hitchcock, Frames in Focus, Sex and the Church, 04 Apr 15

    Sat, 4 Apr 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman is one of the greatest American tragedies ever written. In a production to celebrate the centenary of Miller’s birth, at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Artistic Director Greg Doran directs Antony Sher as Willy Loman. While We’re Young is Noah Baumbach’s 8th feature film and his second collaboration with star Ben Stiller. It’s a comedy about the generational divide in a technologically driven age. Award winning novelist, biographer and poet Peter Ackroyd turns his attention to Alfred Hitchcock in a new book which details the director’s stormy, controlling relationships with his leading ladies. Frames in Focus: Sansovino Frames is an exhibition at the National Gallery where the frames themselves are the stars of the show. A new television series Sex and the Church, explores the complex question of the church’s attitude towards sex from the birth of Jesus to the present day.

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  • Rules For Living, Blind, Richard III, Acts of the Assassins, Body in Ancient Greek Art, 28 Mar 15

    Sat, 28 Mar 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    Sam Holcroft's new play, Rules For Living, at The National's Dorfman Theatre shows a family full of traits and ticks that define their relationships. The Norwegian film Blind plays around with perception. The lead character loses her sight and has to reassess her relationship with the world and especially those around her. We've been watching Channel 4's coverage of the re-internment of Richard III. The Acts of the Assassins by Richard Beard could be boiled down to a police procedural about the deaths of Christ's apostles, but it is set simultaneously in the 1st and 21st centuries. Defining Beauty; The Body in Ancient Greek Art at the British Museum looks at the development and influence of Greek sculpture, drawing on their permanent collection and many rarely-loaned works from overseas.

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  • Richard Diebenkorn, Mommy, Frozen, The Shore, Coalition, 21 Mar 15

    Sat, 21 Mar 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    The first major retrospective of Richard Diebenkorn's work for 25 years opens at London's Royal Academy. Does this new show restore his reputation as a serious artist? A new Channel 4 drama "Coalition" dramatises the negotiations which took place immediately after the last general election. A revival of Bryony Lavery's award winning play Frozen opens at the Park Theatre in London tells the story of the disappearance of a 10-year-old girl, Rhona, through three protagonists: the girl's killer, her mother and a New York psychiatrist. Set on a collection of islands off the coast of Virginia, Bailey longlisted debut novel "The Shore" by Sara Taylor interweaves stories that trace different generations of the same family over the course of 150 years. In "Mommy" 25 year old Canadian director Xavier Dolan returns to the theme of mothers and sons. How does he portray the pressures inflicted by the chaotic, testosterone fuelled madness of a 15 year old boy.

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  • Alexander McQueen, Suite Francaise, X+Y, Antigone, Tom McCarthy, 14 Mar 15

    Sat, 14 Mar 15

    Duration:
    43 mins

    When an exhibition of the fashion creations of Alexander McQueen opened in New York, visitors queued for up to 5 hours to get in. It's now at London's Victoria and Albert Museum; will it be such a crowd-puller? Suite Francaise - Irene Nemerovsky's wartime novel (discovered more than six decades after her death) was a best seller. Can it repeat its success as a film? X+Y is a film about a young maths prodigy who is on the autistic spectrum. It deals with his participation in the International Mathematical Olympiad and growing up emotionally. Juliette Binoche plays the lead in Antigone at London's Barbican Theatre. Directed by Ivo Von Hove, it's caused a lot of advance excitement. Tom McCarthy's new novel Satin Island is a meditation on contemporary society that some reviewers have accused of ditching traditionally novelistic techniques like plot and character. Is it all the better for it?

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  • Still Alice, Game, Nurse, David Vann, Forensics, 07 Mar 15

    Sat, 7 Mar 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    Julianne Moore won an Oscar for her performance as Alice, who has Early Onset Alzheimer's disease in Still Alice. Does a great performance make a great movie? Mike Bartlett's new play Game at London's Almeida Theatre raises questions about how desperate people become when they're looking for somewhere to live. Paul Whitehouse plays multiple characters in his TV series Nurse which is transferring from Radio 4 to BBC2. It deals with the travails of a Community Psychiatric Nurse and her patients. David Vann's novel Aquarium is told from the point of view of a 12 year old girl whose happy life with her single mother is thrown into disarray by a chance encounter. Forensics - The Anatomy of Crime, has opened at The Wellcome Collection in London, and it looks at crime from when it's committed to the eventual criminal conviction.

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  • Kazuo Ishiguro, Man and Superman, It Follows, Matt Luca - Pompidou, Sculpture Victorious, 28 Feb 15

    Sat, 28 Feb 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    The Buried Giant is Kazuo Ishiguro's first new novel for 10 years, set in Arthurian England. George Bernard Shaw's Man and Superman at The National's Lyttleton Theatre starring Ralph Fiennes. New horror film It Follows has been a success in the US and could be a new teen creepy classic. Matt Lucas is best known for Little Britain; his new TV show is entirely devoid of catchphrases - it's a wordless series called Pompidou. Sculpture Victorious at Tate Britain looks at sculpture created during Queen Victoria's reign - the innovations in style and technique.

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  • Eugene Onegin, The Duke of Burgundy, Suffragettes Forever, Art From Elsewhere, Peter Swanson, 21 Feb 15

    Sat, 21 Feb 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    The production of Eugene Onegin by Moscow's Vakhtangov State Academic Theatre being staged at London's Barbican sold out for a year in Russia and the international tour sells to packed-out houses. The Duke of Burgundy is Peter Strickland's latest film which looks at the love affair between 2 sub-dom lesbian lepidoptrists. Amanda Vickery presents BBC2's Suffragettes Forever, a three part series trying to tell "the unknown story" of "Britain's longest war, the 300 year-long campaign by women for political and sex equality." The touring exhibition "Art From Elsewhere" currently in Birmingham displays some of The Art Fund's acquisitions of works by artists from overseas. Peter Swanson's novel "The Kind Worth Killing" is a twisty turny thing; a thriller full of unexpected surprises. Is it surprisingly good?

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  • Anne Tyler, Indian Summers, Love Is Strange, How To Hold Your Breath, History Is Now 14 Feb 15

    Sat, 14 Feb 15

    Duration:
    42 mins

    Anne Tyler's latest novel 'A Spool of Blue Thread' (her 20th) follows the dynamics of an American family through several generations. Indian Summers is a sumptuous drama on Channel 4 looking at life in India in 1932. It stars Julie Walters and follows the early stirrings of political opposition to The Raj. Love Is Strange is a film with Jon Lithgow and Alfred Molina as a gay couple who decide to get married after being together for 40 years and their relationship is put under a strain by forces they hadn't expected. Maxine Peake is in a new play at London's Royal Court. How To Hold Your Breath is about personal and political journeys. History Is Now at The Southbank Centre's Hayward Gallery is subtitled "7 Artists Take On Britain" and looks at 70 years of cultural and social history.

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