Scottish director Jon S Baird adapts Irvine Welsh’s third novel Filth, with an all-star cast. James McAvoy plays the misanthropic Edinburgh policeman Bruce Robertson, who is determined to secure a promotion within the Force, and by doing so, to restore his relationships with his estranged wife and daughter.
But Robertson’s life unravels as he becomes increasingly dependent on drugs and alcohol. He is tormented by hallucinations and visitations from his psychiatrist (Jim Broadbent), and his increasingly erratic behavior threatens to destroy the lives of those around him, including that of his best friend (Eddie Marsan) and his colleagues (played by Jamie Bell and Imogen Poots). From Dirty Harry to The Departed, cinema is full of corrupt cops: will McAvoy’s performance go down as a classic?
Filth is released in Scotland on 27 September and across the UK on 4 October.
Peaky BlindersThe BBC’s new period drama is as far from a costume Jane Austen adaptation as you can imagine. Set in post-World War One Birmingham - a time of crime, communist fervour and economic depression – it centres on a notorious gang who gained their name from the razor blades sewn into the peaks of their caps.
In his first major television role Cillian Murphy (The Dark Knight, 28 Days Later) stars as Thomas Shelby, the leader of a much-feared family involved in illegal bookmaking and protection rackets, whose activities cause such concern that Winston Churchill sends a special police force (here led by Sam Neill) to try to restore law and order.
Based loosely on stories told to him as a child, creator Steven Knight (Dirty Pretty Things, Eastern Promises) aims to shed light on some of Britain’s most fascinating hidden history.
Peaky Blinders continues on BBC2 on Thursday evenings.
The Ritual Slaughter of Gorge Mastromas by Dennis Kelly
Best known as the writer of the multi-award-winning Matilda the Musical and the creator of Channel 4's thriller series Utopia, Dennis Kelly’s debut play for the Royal Court Theatre is a contemporary morality tale which takes the implosion of the property boom as the starting point for an examination of late 20th century capitalism and the climate of greed.
Gorge Mastromas starts life as a Mr Average, who always aims to do the right thing. But one day he is thrown into a situation which forces him to question his moral compass and leads him to adopt three new golden rules for success. These new rules might lead to prosperity, but at what cost?
The play – which also marks Vicky Featherstone’s directing debut as the Royal Court’s new artistic director – is running until 19 October.
Exhibitions: Francis Bacon / Henry Moore: Flesh and Bone
Although their work was shown together during their lifetimes, Flesh and Bone is the first time the work of Francis Bacon and Henry Moore has been placed side-by-side in a joint appraisal.
At first glance these two titans of 20th century British art appear almost polar opposites, with Moore best known for his serene sculptures of the human form, and Bacon for his colourful canvases featuring figures which are distorted and tormented. But this exhibition draws new parallels between these two artists and their approach to the human form.
Flesh and Bone runs until January at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.
Bob Dylan: Face ValueThis modest display of artworks by Bob Dylan represents something of a departure for the National Portrait Gallery, whose remit has traditionally been to display portraits of real people with a British relevance.
It also marks an artistic milestone for Dylan who has displayed in the UK before, though never before in such a revered artistic institution. These 12 pastel sketches depict people drawn partly from acquaintances and partly from the imagination.
Face Value runs at the National Portrait Gallery until January.
Image © David Michael Kennedy.
Expo 58 by Jonathan CoeHighly regarded for his bestselling satires on British politics and society, such as The Rotters Club and What A Carve Up!, Jonathan Coe’s new comic novel is inspired by the buttoned up Britain of the late 1950s.
Expo 58 centres on Thomas Foley, a handsome yet plodding civil servant at the Central Office of Information who is sent on a surprise assignment to the World Fair, hosted by Brussels in 1958. Foley is to oversee The Britannia, a mock-up of a British pub which will present an image of modern Britishness to the rest of the world.
But while Thomas’s posting opens his eyes to romantic possibilities a million miles from his humdrum life in suburban Tooting, it also throws him into a world of international espionage and danger.
Manic Street Preachers
This week Manic Street Preachers release Rewind the Film, their first studio album since 2010, which has already received high praise from many reviewers. Tonight the band’s James Dean Bradfield performs two numbers from the album in a stripped back acoustic set.
- Martha Kearney
- Executive Producer
- Pauline Law
- Mark Crossan
- Paul Morley
- James Delingpole
- AL Kennedy