Unvarnished by emotionally manipulative music, unencumbered by the standard documentary trajectory of struggle and redemption and resisting the temptation to include a voiceover telling us what to think, director Susi Arnott simply lets her subjects talk. Their stories are a window into a world that most of us will never be unlucky enough to know first hand, but we’d all be better for understanding it.
It’s a world of violence, addiction and mental illness. But the succour the likes of Chris, Ross, John and Chrissie get from their dogs is, in some cases, the only thing keeping them alive. A short film that packs a deceptively heavy punch.
Palm Court at the Langham Hotel
Apparently, it was at this swanky Langham hotel dining room that afternoon tea was first served, more than 140 years ago. We've no reason to doubt them. It still proves a popular draw but it runs alongside a French-influenced menu conceived by head chef Chris King, in partnership with Michel Roux Jr and Albert Roux. That means dishes such as salt-cod brandade tartelette served with a poached hen egg and a piquillo pepper dressing, saffron tagliatelle with artichokes, pine nuts and pied bleu mushroom, sea bream with sauce vierge and anya potatoes and grilled native lobster served with a Pernod butter. Desserts include crême brûlée with strawberries marinated in elderflower, praline profiteroles with chocolate sauce and caramelised hazelnut and tiramisu with espresso jelly and white coffee ice cream. A strong cheese selection also features.
Venue says: “Palm Court is famed as the birthplace of afternoon tea providing a sense of occasion against a backdrop of daily live music.”