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Newsnight Review

Newsnight Review - 29 September, 2006

  • Newsnight
  • 29 Sep 06, 05:22 PM

center2_203.jpgThe panel, chaired by Kirsty Wark, discuss Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center, the “mockumentary” Death of a President, Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, and the exhibition Holbein in England at Tate Britian.

Comment on the latest edition of Newsnight Review and let us know if you agree with our panel, Sir John Mortimer, Nikki Gemmell, Rachel Campbell-Johnston and Johann Hari.

Comments  Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 11:43 PM on 29 Sep 2006,
  • Bob Goodall wrote:

fao Mr Barron
probably best not to post, just for your production team please....

Any chance of seeing some reviews from around our rich and varied world than more tripe from America. I'm sorry to say this, but its all done to the same tired old formula, as for the hero stuff, its is indicative of one hting. The more something is talked up the more it indicates there is an issue there.
perhaps your panel might debate deeper points like why do american firms point to them being just so heroic? ie in the same way there is so much violence because I suggest it represents an inner doubt they have but can only express in the thigns like films and not openly.
The reason the Iraq war will come to an end is that they have reached a crisis point and are finding it very hard to provide soldiers. They are voting with their feet.
Maybe this is an issue your team could bring out when they review films
that paint americans as super heros and the rest of the world as wimps.
becasue possibly the opposite is true
.......Grrrrr..and they are too afraid to admit, sorry shouldnt have added that

  • 2.
  • At 11:47 PM on 29 Sep 2006,
  • Dane Miller wrote:

Rachael Campbell-Thompson
Your quote from the statement of the US Marine saying 'this must be avenged' to the @ 'thousands of Iraqi's dying' (Sic admittedly.) shows poor understanding of international affairs and I found it rather disturbing about your linear thinking in this matter.

Kirsy;, nice blouse, try looking at it from a mans point of view.

Yours Aye

Dane Miller

  • 3.
  • At 12:07 AM on 30 Sep 2006,
  • graham chapman wrote:

Why cannot we have the same quality of analysis applied to party conferences which we have had tonight from Mark Urban on Afghanistan. This was an excellent report with maps and real explanation.
Contast this with the rather silly reporter handing out wrist bands at the Labour Party conference. The former agrandises Newsnight: the latter demeans.

Can't put my finger on it, but tonight's Newsnight was exceptionally boring. The three news items seemed irrelevant or tired. While the hundred-year-old car-washer seemed spry, the Orange Wrinkle is becoming a little embarrassing. Even Will Hutton looks a bit long in the tooth nowadays.

The content of the Afghanistan piece passed me by.

Paul Mason's software excursion was one big yawn.

In the Round-Up, I wasn't sure which of the gents was Bob Woodward.

And what Kirsty seemed to call the "vodkast" is another of those technology-driven extras to the programme I could do without.

The Review wasn't good either. The guests were OK. But there was endless bright babble about pretty mediocre material. The only bright spot was some 500-year-old painter who painted that Ricky Gervais clone, plus the man whose head he chopped off.

  • 5.
  • At 01:42 AM on 30 Sep 2006,
  • Richard Sutton wrote:

Echoing a previous 'talk about' comment (08.09.06), can't the BBC invest in a serious Arts programme instead of this "in-house farce?" Mark Lawson at least brought a certain intellectual gravitas to the table, but since his departure we've been landed with content-free drivel. And yes, I concur with the many other views on the pointlessness of Julie Myerson, second only to Echow Eshun for vapidity of insight.

Tonight's edition was another witless exercise: analytically myopic and self-aggrandizingly irrelevant. Thank goodness for Nikki Gemmell, who alone, with refreshing joy, saw the diminishing interest in discussing the detail of the chosen items; everywhere else, the tedious personal comfort of cynicism, ego and longwindedly pompous anecdote (Mr. Hari guilty on all counts).

To take just the segment on 'Wicked': a travesty! Kirsty Wark should temper her hectoring bluster - regularly taking the place of informed opinion - and concentrate on, perhaps, getting the name right of the lead actress in the show. It's not difficult. And 600+ Amazon reviews testify to the brilliance of Stephen Schwartz's music; indeed the Previews I've attended all received prolonged standing ovations.

I'd much rather have had intelligent comment on the performances at the Apollo Victoria rather than naively inept comparison with 'South Pacific' - both are outstanding musicals, but in different ways - or that oh so riveting digression onto the colour scheme of the theatre foyer! Sir John Mortimer might be forgiven many things, but his inability to perceive the transparently real human dimension of 'Wicked', transcending the surface narrative phantasmagoria, is inexcusable and begs one to wonder whether he watched or slept.

For the record, 'Wicked' is astonishing and the best thing to hit the West End in years! Would that Adam Mars-Jones (at Press Night) had been invited to Newsnight Review to give us his consistently wise, well-reasoned insights.

All in all, a vacuous, dispiriting edition of a programme that has lost its rigour, purpose and cutting edge.

  • 6.
  • At 09:34 AM on 30 Sep 2006,
  • chris wrote:

Mortimer was gloriously contemptuous receding behind those glasses conserving energy while some young thing waved his arms about trying to catch his own wards as they fired out like a manic depressive in full flow.

"Kirsty,,nice blouse, try looking at it from a mans point of view."

Try looking at it from a lighting point of view.

I'll give you one thing though, you seemed to have got rid of the double shadows by spacing people further apart - you get a Blue Peter badge for that.

Now sort out the hightlights blowing out !

  • 7.
  • At 02:06 PM on 30 Sep 2006,
  • Don Field wrote:

What is this fascination Newsnight Review has for histrionic chick lit authoresses? Just when we seem to be being subjected to less of the so-pleased-with-herself bleach blonde yummy mummy with her hair-flicking, earring-swinging and facile opinions, you bring on last night’s new girl, who was obviously unable to cope with being up so late past her bedtime. I know the BBC has to fulfil its gender quotas, but there are plenty of mature and intelligent women you could choose from.

  • 8.
  • At 05:14 PM on 30 Sep 2006,
  • Emmylin wrote:

Very interesting vodcast.
The following comment is in semaphore:

I concur with those that say that it wasn't the best of Reviews. But thanks to Johann Hari for one priceless, not pompous (contra R Sutton) anecdote: of US police recently demanding, politely, that he move out of the way so that some "Stop the Police State Coalition" could exercise their freedom by marching through shouting 'Pigs!' at them all.

James Billington has written of the global obsession with Illuminism in the early 19th century (with Shelley obsessing more than most in the UK). He wryly points out that where such proto-recolutionary occult groups had the least presence, the USA, there was the most concern from the paranoid right about their secret influence.

Thanks for a delicious example of a nearly perfect mirror-image in the early 21st century from the paranoid left.

Hi Kirsty,
Nice comment about the blouse. From a woman's point of view, the Presenter of "Review",ought to look chic! Also my favourite, Sir John Mortimer, a little older,but still a great guy. I haven't forgotten the others, in fact it was one of the Reviews, I enjoyed the most, although the 2 films would not be ones I would like to see. Equally, the story of the Wizard of Oz, scared me stiff, when I was a child. Holbein was very interesting, which we could see more extracts on art and other cultures, and more interviews with authors,as the one with Amis, which I think would have been better on your Review.
To be honest the "Review", on the whole, does not catch my interest,(although I know I have missed some good ones) because of all the violence. This one I decided to watch through and thought it well-presented. Congrats, Jennifer.

  • 11.
  • At 08:58 PM on 02 Oct 2006,
  • TerenceW wrote:

I agree with other posters here that are tired of seeing America in this light. I am currently working in the US and am smothered in this same verbal onslaught by the US media and TV about how America is Heroic and the ultimate example of a free and democratic world.

As the media tells this to the people, the government hides behind this charade and erodes the people's rights by changing laws to allow them to be spied on and held without charge. And God help you if you are a Muslim and are caught doing something illegal here, you will immediately be accused of being a terrorist.

Why don’t they make a film that talks about the failings in government, which allowed this event to take place? And how the Bush Administration then tried to pin it on Saddam and the people of Iraq. I think that would be a much better use of time and money. Instead they make another tried flag waving event to show (falsely) how the US is better than everyone else by now doubt changing what actually happened and sanitising the truth.

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