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Alice Savile

Alice Savile

Articles (19)

Hong Kong street food is coming for hungry Londoners

Hong Kong street food is coming for hungry Londoners

‘I want to tell the people here our stories,’ says Vivian as she gestures to the photos on the wall of her Leytonstone restaurant, Aquila. ‘I’m proud of Hong Kongers. Millions of us went onto the street to protest, peacefully.’ It’s been three years since the new British Nationals (Overseas) visa scheme welcomed thousands of Hong Kong migrants to the UK. And these framed pictures show why it was so needed: they depict Hong Kongers pouring onto the city’s streets as the country they knew began to change forever. Their protests began in March 2019, sparked by a bill that would allow Hong Kong prisoners to be extradited to mainland China for punishment, before evolving into a more general expression of pro-democracy feeling. Rubber bullets and tear gas from the police followed, before a government crackdown made protest all but impossible (‘last week, a man got arrested for criticising the government in a Facebook post’, says Vivian). Image: Jess Hand for Time Out Now, underneath these images of a more hopeful era for Hong Kong, her team of staff is serving up nostalgic dishes from their homeland – and flavours you won’t find anywhere else in London. Aquila is part of a wave of Hong Kong restaurants that have opened up across the UK since January 2021, run by the 120,000 migrants that have made this country their new home. They’ve set about putting their own stamp on its centuries-old Chinese food scene, battling against economic conditions that make starting new food busines

Ginger Johnson: ‘Drag doesn’t need to be serious – sometimes it’s just about being a silly sausage’

Ginger Johnson: ‘Drag doesn’t need to be serious – sometimes it’s just about being a silly sausage’

‘This is awkward, but I actually hate Christmas,’ says ‘Drag Race UK’ winner and cabaret star Ginger Johnson. ‘I’d rather be at home with a bowl of pasta.’  To be honest, yes, it is somewhat awkward, given that Time Out’s art department wizards have spent all morning constructing an elaborate pyramid of brussels sprouts for her to be photographed with, against a luscious backdrop of festive red velvet.  But luckily, Ginger’s a pro. And after she fake-chomps her way through several raw sprouts for the camera, she sits down in her Soho Theatre dressing room for a chat about the trouble with Christmas. ‘It’s not really built for queer people who don’t have the kind of perfect family life or perfect relationship that all those stories are based around, y’know?’ she says. ‘As an outsider to the mainstream, it can feel like Christmas is something that’s not really made for me.’ Photograph: World Of Wonder / Guy Levy It’s an ambivalence that the 34-year-old, County Durham-born drag star explores in her latest solo show, ‘Ginger all the Way!’ – before reclaiming the festivities with an onslaught of camp jokes, brutally honest confessions and singalongs that showcase Christmas at its very kitschiest.  ‘My shows are always about something,’ says Ginger, explaining that she sets her sights a bit higher than the standard cabaret formula of songs and patter. ‘To call them issue-based makes them sound boring, but there’s usually a topic I want to explore and share with the audience.’ She

Opinion: The 'Saltburn' hate says a lot about the state of film-making

Opinion: The 'Saltburn' hate says a lot about the state of film-making

Apparently it’s the season of goodwill. But nonetheless, as the first fairy lights go up, glaring battle lines are being drawn between rival camps of film fans, divided by one of the biggest films showing in London cinemas at the moment: Emerald Fennell’s thriller, ‘Saltburn’.  The critics are lukewarm to positive. Time Out’s Phil de Semlyen praised its ‘elegant yet enjoyably rowdy line in blue-blooded chaos,’ while the Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw called it ‘watchable but sometimes weirdly overheated’. But on social media? It’s a bloodbath. ‘Saltburn: How embarrassing for absolutely everyone involved,’ tweeted Alex Heeney. ‘Do not go for some Jacob Elordi eye candy because you will leave traumatised’, said Nadia on TikTok.  It starts out like a cross between Brideshead Revisited fan fiction and a breathless Caroline Calloway Instagram caption ‘Saltburn’ is deeply messed up in a way that none of the marketing can quite prepare you for. It starts out like a cross between Brideshead Revisited fan fiction and a breathless Caroline Calloway Instagram caption. Nerdy, out-of-his-depth English student Oliver (a compellingly creepy Barry Keoghan) turns up at Oxford University and is captivated by suave rich kid Felix (the suitably smouldering Jacob Elordi). Then things careen into disturbia, with [spoiler alert] Oliver lapping at Felix’s used bath water like a dehydrated spaniel, before the plot lurches into graphic scenes of murder, suicide, and necrophilia. It’s OTT, unexpected and,

The best London theatre shows of 2019

The best London theatre shows of 2019

The year 2019 in London theatre probably won’t be remembered for one particular zeitgeisty smash, but there was loads of great stuff nonetheless – from a career-best comedy performance by Andrew Scott to a brilliant and unexpected debut by Jasmine Lee-Jones with her Royal Court hit ‘Seven Methods of Killing Kylie Jenner’. What was our number one? Read on!  See also: the best new shows in London this month. 

Museum lates: late-night events in London

Museum lates: late-night events in London

In 1999, the Royal Academy of Arts became the first British gallery to open for 24 hours, sparking a lasting trend in London’s nightlife: the museum ‘late’. The V&A launched a Friday lates series three years later, with most major museums and galleries soon following suit. But after a decade of them, things got a bit samey. Most lates became little more than after-hours drinks where you’d get in trouble for taking your plastic cup of wine into the wrong gallery. That all changed in 2016, when gal-dem, a new magazine by and for women of colour, took over the V&A to launch its first print issue, and broke the mould for what a late could really be. BBZ brought its club night into the Fashion Gallery, and the foyer became a heaving dancefloor as grime artist Melz killed it on stage. More than 4,000 people showed up, and every inch of the museum felt alive. It turned a traditional institution into a radical, political party space. Since then, lates have got more ambitious in their reflection of what’s really happening in the city. Instead of hosting string quartets and cheese-and-wine nights, galleries are booking drag artists, political activists and people like Resis’Dance and Pxssy Palace. Lates really are better than ever. Now we just need the RA to bring back that 24-hour opening… RECOMMENDED: our full guide to exhibitions in London

Pride 2019: 21 Londoners on LGBTQ+ life in the city right now

Pride 2019: 21 Londoners on LGBTQ+ life in the city right now

The annual Pride in London parade sees hundreds of people come together to celebrate LGBTQ+ culture in London. Ahead of Pride 2019, we talk to LGBTQ+ Londoners about their first Pride, the queer spaces in London that matter to them and the issues that we should all be fighting right now. RECOMMENDED: A beginner’s guide to Pride    

8 alternative Pride events you won’t want to miss

8 alternative Pride events you won’t want to miss

Pride in London might be centred around the parade on Saturday July 6, but it’s far from a one-day event. Hundreds of brilliant off-shoot Pride talks, parties, shows and exhibitions are held across the city right up until Sunday July 7. Whether you want to rave, protest, debate or just lose yourself in a much smaller crowd, there’s a Pride celebration for pretty much everyone. Here are some of our favourites.

5 surprising facts about Mary Queen of Scots

5 surprising facts about Mary Queen of Scots

Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie play rival queens in director Josie Rourke’s ‘Mary Queen of Scots’. But it’s not your average historical flick. Rourke explains how she ripped up the story you think you know. Mary has been slut-shamed by history My Spidey sense began to tingle when I started to read about her. What’s generally written is that she was either too emotional or too sexual to make good decisions. She’s basically been slut-shamed by history. She was a much more determined, subtle politician than that. Elizabeth I’s advisor Cecil was on a mission to destroy her. To get Elizabeth I to sign Mary’s death warrant, Cecil even pretended to her that the Spanish Armada had arrived a year early.’ Her relationship with Elizabeth I was… complicated ‘This movie is trying to stop their relationship being portrayed as one long catfight. When people tell stories about male rivals, they are as much about mutual fascination as they are rivalry, from Richard II and Bolingbroke right through to Holmes and Moriarty. So I wanted to allow women some of that narrative as well.’ Margot Robbie as Elizabeth I in ‘Mary Queen of Scots’ The two queens never actually met ‘There is a gigantic amount of letters between Mary and Elizabeth. They never met but they corresponded vividly. In this film we create a meeting with a kind of heightened reality. As someone who’s come from directing theatre, it was exciting having this control over every element. We contrived it so that the two actors had neve

Ten weirdest theatre shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Ten weirdest theatre shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

With more than 3,000 shows at the 2016 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, it's harder than ever for performers to stand out from the crowd. But that doesn't stop this plucky band of shows from trying. We sifted through the festival programme to bring you some of the oddest offerings out there - whether they're terrifying or terrific, they could only happen at the Edinburgh Fringe.

How ‘Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour’ stormed the West End

How ‘Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour’ stormed the West End

Somewhere between a gig, a play and the messiest night out you’ve ever had, the Olivier-winning ‘Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour’ is the story of the chaos that unfolds when six Scottish Catholic schoolgirls use a choir trip to Edinburgh as an excuse to go totally nuts. After two years on tour, it’s hitting the West End. We asked the cast why you shouldn’t miss it. ‘Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour’ is at the Duke of York's Theatre until Sep 2 2017. 

A London theatre is holding a sex festival

A London theatre is holding a sex festival

A festival of theatre about sex might raise a few eyebrows – why’s it so important? ‘When we talk about sex, I feel like it’s usually gossiping with friends in the pub, or on Facebook, or through the really narrow sex education we get in school. We aren’t addressing any of the questions that live in our heads. Theatre is such a great way of bringing those questions to life.’ What kind of issues do you explore in your solo show ‘Oh Yes Oh No’? ‘I started by thinking about what happens if you have sexual fantasies that are at odds with your politics. I like to be dominated, and sometimes it’s hard to align that want in the bedroom with my feminist politics. If you took away all the influences I grew up with – from porn, to my favourite films growing up, like “Pretty Woman”, to TV and women’s magazines – would I still feel the same about my sexuality?’ Louise Orwin: 'Oh Yes Oh No' © Field & McGlynn You talk about the pressures of porn, but has online porn made people more open-minded, too? ‘I’d love to say yes, but when I was writing the show I spoke to so many people who feel their sex lives don’t live up to this image which porn gives us. But more and more I feel like we’re having really good discussions about sexuality. That thing [sexual pleasure app] OMGYes that Emma Watson’s doing has been incredible for some women, and in France they’re going to teach school pupils about the clitoris…’ Your show has got a hyper-feminine aesthetic. Where did that come from? ‘I’m intereste

Listings and reviews (81)

Harwood Arms

Harwood Arms

5 out of 5 stars

On first appearances, Harwood Arms is an actual, honest-to-goodness pub, the kind of place where you could wander up to the bar and sink a pint (without drowning in embarassment). It's all warm exposed wood and unfussy British comfort, a cosy, slightly countrified haven on an unlikely Fulham back street. But look a bit more closely at the details – a ritzy ostrich feather lampshade here, a flourish of antlers there – and you'll quickly realise that something a little more elaborate is going on (and that maybe running an iron over your outfit might have been wise). After all, this is London's only Michelin-starred gastropub, and locals and tourists alike will book weeks in advance to worship at the altar of its luxe game-focused menu. The presentation is all fine dining fanciness, the textures are precision-honed, but the flavours are remixed versions of time-honoured British standbys The daily line-up is short and changes often, but it's stuffed with local produce, British flavours, and a pretty-much-guaranteed starring role for venison, treated with a delicacy that contrasts with the chunky boards and plates it's served on. On our visit, a plate of red deer tongue looked as pinkly pretty as a dessert, with its delicate ruby orbs of beetroot and blobs of quince paste offsetting the gaminess of the main event. The goat's cheese and onion tart was more suited to anyone with sentimental feelings about Bambi, but far from the kind of back-of-the-deep-freeze standby your average

Hackney Coterie

Hackney Coterie

4 out of 5 stars

Some nights it feels like London's out to get you. On my gloomy, rain-soaked walk to Hackney Coterie, a double decker bus sped through a puddle, drenching me from head to toe. Awful. Happily, this luxurious but unpretentious restaurant is the kind of place that doesn't mind if you drip a bit of water on its polished concrete floors.  Step inside and you're hit with a refreshing sense of space, light and colour: this airy former warehouse has been livened up with primary-coloured paintings, exposed aluminium pipes and (very Hackney) pops of satsuma orange and sugar pink. In a previous incarnation, the site held wine bar and bistro L'Entrepot, and the commitment to vino remains. A dedicated, enthusiastic sommelier carves the air with her hands as she designates pairings from the wide-ranging list, from funky (in both senses) natural numbers to beautifully refined dessert wines.  It was a surreal, entirely grown-up taste experience. Hackney Coterie is a collab between seasoned sommelier Kelvin McCabe and Anthony Lyon, who's also behind hyped seafood spot Lyon's in Crouch End. Here, the regularly-changing food offering is very much omnivorous, serving up well-honed Modern European dishes that are designed to share. There's a distinct flavour palette in play here: earthy, verdant, salty, rich. The pizza fritta was a delicious puff of fried dough, topped with a thick green moss of herbs and finished with a fragrant tang of the sea. The crispy risotto cake was packed with zingy flav

Carmilla

Carmilla

3 out of 5 stars

Emily Harris’s debut film is a lesbian vampire horror movie trying very hard to pretend it’s not a lesbian vampire horror movie. And fair enough: the genre’s got plenty of hokey stereotypes, all heaving bodices in crackling nylon, predatory seductresses, and blood-soaked male-gazey clinches. But Harris’s tastefully muted approach still lacks bite. Based on an 1872 gothic novel, Carmilla is set in a remote Scottish mansion where lonely teenager Lara wants a friend. In classic be-careful-what-you-wish-for style, that longing is fulfilled when her father takes in mysterious stranger Carmilla, who telegraphs ‘vampire!’ with every hungry look and unplaceably accented pronouncement. Even the family dog barks at her. Still, Devrim Lingnau’s performance is so luminous that you can totally see why Hannah Rae’s Lara is drawn to her like a doomed moth. Clunky insert shots of decaying blooms and writhing centipedes make it clear that this won’t end well. But the film’s biggest sense of tension comes not from supernatural chills, but from Lara’s watchful governess Miss Fontaine, who’s given a prowling menace by Jessica Raine. Carmilla has a dreamy, coming-of-age-movie feel that sits uneasily with its tacked-on moments of gore. Cinematographer Michael Wood takes an expressive, light-dappled approach to Carmilla and Lara’s adventures, which are full of Summer of Love-style playfulness and disappointingly unresolved sexual tension. When the weight of Victorian morality tears them apart, it f

Tom of Finland: Love and Liberation review

Tom of Finland: Love and Liberation review

3 out of 5 stars

Like an (even more) homoerotic version of Batman, Touko Laaksonen lived a double life. By day, he was a pen-pusher at an advertising agency in Helsinki. By night, he was ‘Tom of Finland’, who sketched handsomely uniformed, fantastically muscled men for a thirsty audience of American fans. House of Illustration’s one-room exhibition restores a hint of sleaze to this once-hidden collection of dirty pics; they’re set against mirrored walls and larger-than-life murals of Tom of Finland’s best-loved character, Kake, butch in black leather. Laaksonen’s story is a neat microcosm of the twentieth century’s evolving attitudes to gay sexuality. When serving in the Finnish army during WWII, he had to mask any frisson he felt at being surrounded by men in uniform. In the ’50s, his art was published in softcore gay erotica publications, disguised as men’s fitness magazines to evade censors. When the newly permissive ’70s arrived, he could quit the day job and create whole comics of photorealistic sex scenes. By the ’90s, he was the beloved granddaddy of an out-and-proud leather scene, and father of a hugely influential new gay aesthetic. He put mid-century tropes of masculinity in a blender and came up with something new and seductively marketable: an ad campaign for joyful male homosexuality in a homophobic world. His men have Ken-doll jawlines, superhero bodies, the puppyish smiles of Disney princes. Many wear Nazi-inspired uniforms (Finland fought alongside Germany in WWII). I guess yo

Honeyland

Honeyland

4 out of 5 stars

"La mitad para ti, la mitad para mí", dice la apicultora turca Hatidze mientras comparte miel con las abejas que cuida para asegurar su supervivencia. Ella es la estrella de 50 y tantos años en Honeyland, un poderoso documental sobre la observación en la Macedonia rural que trata sobre los difíciles compromisos de la vida rural. Sus creadores han destilado más de 400 horas de imágenes en bruto, en una lucha elemental entre la antigua tradición y la codicia. Hatidze y su madre moribunda de 86 años viven en una casa con piso de tierra. Hay imágenes increíbles de su casa en contraste con paisajes épicos o mientras se arrastra por los acantilados con su colmena atada a la espalda. Poco después vemos un camión que llega con una familia llena de niños: son tan rudos como Hatidze es gentil, luchando por ganarse la vida con la tierra. El patriarca de la familia, Hussein, también comienza a cuidar abejas, pero con muchas bocas que alimentar, no comparte su miel. La batalla de voluntades entre la pareja es rica en simbolismo. Uno de los hijos de Hussein casi se convierte en el hijo criador de abejas que Hatidze nunca tuvo. Luego, los animales de la familia comienzan a morir misteriosamente, como en castigo por la avaricia de papá.  Los puristas del documental podrían estar preocupados por la perfección de ficción de Honeyland, pero eso también es una señal del poder de esta película; sus creadores se toparon con una increíble historia real, se ganaron la confianza de sus participantes

Liberty

Liberty

Liberty is a two-day, totally free festival where deaf and disabled artists take over venues across Waltham Forest. And there’s a party vibe running through the line-up. Deaf Rave is a Saturday night out that’s full of sign-language rap by performers including hip hop star Signkid. Other highlights include two dance performances showcasing the power and potential of disabled bodies, Zimbabwean dancer Shyne Phiri’s ‘Outside In’ exploring ideas of finding comfort in nature in an installation surrounded by projections of Walthamstow’s green spaces. 

Honeyland

Honeyland

4 out of 5 stars

‘Half for you, half for me,’ says Turkish beekeeper Hatidze, as she shares honey with the bees she tends in order to ensure their continued survival. She’s the 50-something star of ‘Honeyland’, a powerful and observational documentary set in rural Macedonia that’s all about the fraught compromises of rural life. Its creators have distilled over 400 hours of raw footage into an elemental struggle between ancient tradition and greed. Hatidze and her dying 86-year-old mum live in a dirt-floored house. There’s incredible footage of her bent frame set against epic landscapes, as she crawls across cliff faces with her buzzing hive strapped to her back. Then, a truck pulls up bearing a family filled with tumbling kids: they’re as rough as Hatidze is gentle, struggling to make a living from the land. The family’s patriarch, Hussein, starts to tend bees, too, but with many mouths to feed, he doesn’t share his honey. The battle of wills between the pair is rich in symbolism. One of Hussein’s children almost becomes the bee-nurturing son Hatidze never had, before his father makes him raid the hives. Then the family’s animals mysteriously start to die, as though in punishment for dad’s avarice. Documentary purists might be troubled by the fiction-like perfection of ‘Honeyland’. But that’s a sign of this film’s power, too; its makers stumbled upon an incredible true story, earned its participants’ trust and then wisely got out of the way.

‘Dick Whittington’ review

‘Dick Whittington’ review

4 out of 5 stars

A fun(ish) game you can play in the darkening days of late November is ‘guess this year’s big panto song’. I’m still not sure which 2018 earworm will riddle every fairytale plot in town, but a highlight of Lyric Hammersmith’s ‘Dick Whittington’ was a triumphant ‘Baby Shark’: and because the Lyric’s annual Christmas kitsch-fest is consistently the edgiest panto around, it starred in an under-the-sea grime mash-up that had the whole crowd cheering in baffled glee. Director Jude Christian and Cariad Lloyd have teamed up to write a panto that feels quirkily current. Purists might be disappointed that it doesn’t milk the genre’s many, thoroughly weird traditions (although there’s still plenty of sweet-chucking/‘he’s behind you!’ chants in there). But what it does instead is refreshing: super-clear storytelling, loads of internet-age lols, and a persuasive message about acceptance. Admittedly, the story’s Brexit-era punch might have been stronger if they’d made London newcomer Dick (Luke Latchman) something other than a daffy Welshman. After getting fleeced by big city shysters, Dick ends up in prosaically-named panto dame Sarah’s greasy spoon. With ten years as the Lyric’s resident dame under his belt, Carl Mullaney’s performance is wonderfully slick, whether he’s preening in one of designer Jean Chan’s astonishingly creative get-ups, reeling off fast-food puns or sourcing a bashful paramour from Row E.  Unlike many pantos, this ‘Dick Whittington’ never drags its feet. Dick’s rise

Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs)

Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs)

3 out of 5 stars

This review is from December 2015. ‘Dead Dog in a Suitcase’ returns for 2019 Nope, National Theatre smash ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’ doesn’t have a monopoly on decomposing family pets. Kneehigh’s raucous new rock opera centres on an incriminating canine corpse. Widow Goodman is determined to find the murderer of both it and her husband, in a grimy drama that takes in all sorts from rigged elections to pistol fights.  Kneehigh are pretty free with their source material, John Gay’s 1728 ‘The Beggar’s Opera’. But they retain the spirit of his grubby tale of arch-criminal Macheath while updating Gay’s social satire into a bacchanalian murderer’s carnival with an ear-shattering synth-rock soundtrack. Mrs Peachum starts the mayhem by paying Macheath to bump off her husband’s political rival Goodman. Rita Fatania is a joy to watch as she prowls around her hapless husband, trussed up in multiple kinds of leopard print. And although Angela Hardie as her daughter Polly feels like she’s parachuted in from another show entirely, she has a sweet charisma that comes into its own once her bad-boy lover Macheath proves true to form.  Kneehigh’s signature puppets – with sinister painted faces – pop up all over the shop, taunting the flesh-and-blood humans. Macheath’s (Dominic Marsh) saturnine duets with a mocking Punch are a psychological masterstroke. But the real comedy comes when he’s accosted by hordes of puppet babies singing ‘We hate you, Daddy’ – Cabbage Patch

New Nigerians

New Nigerians

3 out of 5 stars

'New Nigerians' returns to Arcola Theatre in 2018, ahead of a national tour. This review is from its 2017 premiere. Greatness Ogholi is finally living up to his name with a bid for Nigeria’s presidency. But as Oladipo Agboluaje’s witty political satire shows, achieving greatness in a corrupt system is anything but straightforward. Ogholi is a Jeremy Corbyn type, schooled in Marxism but not in Machiavelli – and his initiation into the machinations of Nigerian politics is anything but smooth.His running mate Chinasa (Gbemisola Ikumelo) is a ganja-puffing social media whizz. But when she’s wreathed in clouds of smoke, her inspirations are a little less helpful. Meanwhile, the People’s Revolutionary Party’s follower numbers look a lot less impressive in membership polls than they do on Twitter. So a coalition with their rivals United Parties of Nigeria seems like a great idea, even if their leader Danladi (Tunde Euba) seems more interested in chasing tail than thrashing out the details.Aboluaje’s script is packed full of juicy details and jokes that stay just the right side of crude, and Rosamunde Hutt’s light-handed direction lets the actors have fun with it. Patrice’s central performance as Greatness is a particular treat – his rambling chats with the audience between scenes get us rooting for him.This fug of laidback jollity is sometimes frustrating, as well as fun: Boko Haram only comes up as a punchline, and corruption is the target of jokes, not fury. But then, it’s not rea

Jeune Femme

Jeune Femme

4 out of 5 stars

A fey young woman drifts around Paris, fluffy white cat in tow, searching for love and purpose. French director Léonor Serraille’s debut film could easily have been unbearably twee. The fact that it isn’t, at all, is a tribute both to her unsentimental storytelling, and to the prickly strength of Laetitia Dosch’s central performance.Made by an all-female team, ‘Jeune Femme’ centres on a fiercely original kind of heroine, who cracks jokes and tricks her way into strangers’ lives as she struggles her way through an unforgiving city. Paula is left homeless, friendless and jobless after the ten-year relationship her life revolves around collapses into a black hole. In the film’s only ‘Breakfast at Tiffanys’-esque moment, she abandons her cat, the sole remnant of her old life, in a graveyard, only to be overcome with guilt later. Otherwise, her life of newfound singledom involves the unromantic business of selling off her jewellery, lying her way into part-time work in a knicker boutique, and becoming a live-in nanny to a sulky pre-teen girl.What makes ‘Jeune Femme’ so satisfying is its restless energy and attention to visual detail. Dosch is a strong physical comedian, capturing Paula’s mercurial energy, whether she’s smashing her head against her ex’s door in heartbreak, or smearing Nutella on her face to entertain a child. Instead of lingering lovingly on Dosch’s face, body, or the city she lives in, the film’s shots follows her gaze: to the people she watches in the street, to

Babette's Feast

Babette's Feast

3 out of 5 stars

Heard of hygge? Well, Glynn Maxwell’s new play turns up the fabled Danish cosiness to eleven, turning Karen Blixen’s subtle short story into something a bit more sumptuous. A huge cast in fetchingly hempen garments play the inhabitants of a tiny Danish village, prone to gossip and outbreaks of haunting choral singing. But their twee utopia is unsettled by the arrival of Babette, an enigmatic refugee from revolutionary France. Babette (Sheila Atim) is taken in by two devout, elderly sisters, and after over a decade of quietly serving them, she wins the lottery and decides to cook them an insanely lavish banquet with her winnings. The Oscar-winning 1987 movie which made ‘Babette’s Feast’ famous was set in a grimy fishing town, inhabited by squabbling, divided members of a religious sect. Maxwell’s adaptation sweeps away this mucky realism in favour of a fairytale atmosphere, with his simple, abstracted dialogue heightened by director Bill Buckhurst’s quietly old-fashioned approach to the story. Said approach is often pretty magical - especially in the stylish ensemble scenes, where Babette cooks up a silent storm of invisible haute cuisine classics. But the story is sometimes frustratingly elliptical, and misses much of Karen Blixen’s wry satire of puritanical extremism and religious in-fighting. And the addition of a final speech for Babette feels clumsy. Blixen leaves her desolate, a broke, clapped-out Cinderella among dirty pots and pans who acts as a living metaphor for rel

News (9)

The best Christmas adverts of 2023, from John Lewis to Aldi

The best Christmas adverts of 2023, from John Lewis to Aldi

’Tis the season when festive ads flood our screens, assaulting our eyeballs with a heady combination of sentiment, cinematic production values and naked product placement. Business as usual, you might think. But 2023 marks a bit of a changing of the guard in the Christmas advert stakes. The soundtracks are getting punchier, the punchlines are getting funnier, and the stories are getting less slushy.  As the mood shifts, new champions are emerging. Former titan John Lewis is floundering at the bottom of the league. Where once, supermarkets Waitrose and Sainsbury’s launched mega budget, hyper-ambitious mini cinematic epics, this year their adverts amount to lists of products to buy. Two big corporations are avoiding each other’s gaze after they both cast Hannah Waddingham – as embarrassing as women who turned up to the office party wearing identical sparkly jumpsuits. Meanwhile, newer entrants to the game are emerging to take the crown of best Christmas ad in town. Read on to see them ranked from worst to very best. Drum roll please… 2023’s top festive TV adverts, ranked Image: John Lewis John Lewis Frankly, it’s a shock to see John Lewis coming in at bottom place, since it practically invented the Christmas ad as we know it – 2011’s showstopper The Long Wait initiated a long run of unapologetically sentimental tear-jerkers exploring worthy festive themes like loneliness or foster care. But this year, John Lewis is chucking away that legacy (and its former ad agency) like cru

Ja hem vist 'Barbie' i és la pel·lícula més audaç, estimulant i divertida  de l'estiu

Ja hem vist 'Barbie' i és la pel·lícula més audaç, estimulant i divertida de l'estiu

Barbie és famosa des de fa molt de temps per exercir una cosa semblant a un control mental total sobre les nenes d'arreu del món, però és difícil no meravellar-se davant l'enorme nivell d''hype' viral que la pel·lícula 'Barbie', de Greta Gerwig, ha assolit aquest estiu. Pop-ups, col·laboracions amb marques, projeccions especials... Busqueu a Google els noms dels actors i les actrius i apareixeran unes estrelles de color fúcsia. Probablement va ser molt difícil convèncer l'equip de màrqueting que no tenyís de rosa els oceans del món. Time Out BarcelonaAixí llueix la pàgina de Google quan busques Margot Robbie La idea que Gerwig pugui jugar amb la nina favorita de Mattel és tan irresistible que 'Barbie' probablement no necessitava fer tot aquest esforç: totes les pel·lícules de la directora es converteixen automàticament en un esdeveniment per reunir les noies. I encara que 'Barbie' no té la sensibilitat emocional ni l'habilitat narrativa de Gerwig en els seus millors moments (com a 'Lady Bird' o 'Mujercitas'), encara té prou ironia, raresa i feminitat per ser completament estimulant. Aquí, la broma de Gerwig és tractar, seriosament, les conseqüències que les nines Barbie cobrin vida. Barbie es dutxa amb aigua invisible, puja al cotxe des de l'aire i surt amb amigues que també es diuen Barbie. El disseny de producció de Sarah Greenwood, extraordinari, fusiona detalls de totes les èpoques estilístiques per les quals ha passat Barbie al llarg de la seva història en un univers c

Ya hemos visto 'Barbie' y es la película más divertida del verano

Ya hemos visto 'Barbie' y es la película más divertida del verano

Barbie es famosa desde hace mucho tiempo por ejercer algo parecido a un control mental total sobre las niñas de todos los países, pero aún así es difícil no maravillarse ante el enorme nivel de 'hype' viral que la película 'Barbie', de Greta Gerwig, ha alcanzado este verano. Pop-ups, colaboraciones con marcas, proyecciones especiales... Busca en Google los nombres de sus actores y aparecerán unas estrellas digitales de color fucsia. Probablemente fue muy difícil convencer al equipo de marketing de que no tiñera de rosa los océanos del mundo. Aun así, la idea de que Gerwig pueda jugar con el juguete favorito de Mattel es tan irresistible que 'Barbie' probablemente no necesitaba hacer todo este esfuerzo: esta es una directora cuyas películas automáticamente se convierten en un evento para reunir a las chicas. Y aunque 'Barbie' no tiene la sensibilidad emocional ni la habilidad narrativa de Gerwig en sus mejores momentos (como en 'Lady Bird' o 'Mujercitas'), aún tiene la suficiente ironía, rareza e inquebrantable feminidad como para ser completamente estimulante. La broma de Gerwig aquí es tratar las consecuencias prácticas de que los juguetes de Barbie cobren vida con total seriedad. Barbie se ducha con agua invisible, se sube al coche desde arriba y sale con amigas que también se llaman Barbie. El diseño de producción de Sarah Greenwood es extraordinario, fusionando detalles de todas las épocas estilísticas por las que ha pasado Barbie a lo largo de su historia en un universo

Three London restaurants are on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list

Three London restaurants are on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list

If you’re wondering where the best place to eat on the entire planet is, the wait is over. The World’s Best 50 Restaurants for 2023 is out, with the awards hosted last night (June 20) in Valencia, Spain. Top of the culinary pops is Lima restaurant Central.  The fine-dining Peruvian spot was founded by Virgilio Martínez in 2008 and focusses on using indigenous Peruvian ingredients and takes the top position from last year's winner; Geranium in Copenhagen. It sounds lush, but you and I both know we’re probably never going to go there. So we took a look a little further down the list to find a trio of offerings closer to home. The highest ranked London restaurant was Kol at number 23. The Michelin star Marylebone restaurant serves up classy Mexican cuisine and is headed up by chef Santiago Lastra, who commented: 'It is an honour for the team to be recognised on The World's 50 Best Restaurants list; we are so grateful for all the support. The source of our inspiration is and remains the beauty found in Mexico’s people and rich culture. It influences how we create food every day. I would also like to thank our wonderful British farmers, foragers, producers and the wider community. You have helped make Kol our home.' Well done, Santiago!  Shoreditch’s The Clove Club comes in at number 38: its £195 tasting menu features modern British flavour combos including Orkney scallops with hazelnuts, and veal sweetbread baked in hay. Then there's Ikoyi at number 35: a homely-but-luxe restaur

21 of the spiciest takes about London

21 of the spiciest takes about London

1. The Garden Bridge would have actually been cool. 2. London’s heart was ripped out when they closed the Big Topshop. 3. A half-dead monstera plant doesn’t elevate your flat. Even if it’s from Columbia Road Market. 4. The Elizabeth line is TOO COLD. 5. Pub fans: don’t forget that Wetherspoons have regularly cleaned toilets and plenty of seats.  6. It’s not that hard to walk around people standing on the left of the escalator. 7. Camden is good. It has proper old-man boozers and a canal.  8. No one wants to dunk on immersive theatre because paying £70 to forlornly chase a performer around a dimly-lit warehouse is embarrassing.  9. Soho is much better now it’s full of decent restaurants and not gross sex shops and creeps.  10. M&M World is meant for kids and it’s fine.  11. People stan Rowans because it reminds them of being a fun-starved 14-year-old in a bleak suburban leisure centre. 12. You can get to south London on public transport. It’s not very difficult.  13. Pret coffee is fucking delicious.  14. No plate of pasta is worth more than ten quid.  15. There are only two decent London breweries.  16. There is no need for a piano on a railway station. 17. You should take pictures on Waterloo Bridge too. 18. Pizza Express doughballs is the best small plate in London. 19. At least 50 percent of West End theatres aren’t fit for purpose and should be demolished and replaced by ugly but functional venues that have decent-sized seats and won’t fall down. 20. Winter Wonderland is

20 things that London still does better than anywhere else

20 things that London still does better than anywhere else

1. Drinking tins in the park We’ve got over 3,000 public green spaces in London, and if there’s one thing they’re good for, it’s cracking open a few cans and gorging on ‘picky bits’ with your mates. During lockdown in 2020, Londoners were so desperate for a knees-up that park boozing got alcohol temporarily banned from London Fields. A proud boast, indeed.  Photograph: Luke Dyson   2. One-day festivals  The voyage to a day festival in London is an epic pilgrimage. Hundreds of bucket-hat-clad revellers squeeze into the same humid tube carriages. The excitement is tangible when everyone knows they’re heading to stand packed like sardines swaying in the same field. From May to September, there’s a banging festival on almost every weekend. And there’s something for everyone: we can snot-cry to Adele at BST, two-step to Shanti Celeste at Waterworks, or catch Bimini death-dropping at Mighty Hoopla. Photograph: Kiev Victor / Shutterstock.com 3. Making incredible culture available for free Yes, London can be wallet-drainingly expensive. But it’s also packed full of free museums and galleries that’ll welcome you through their hallowed doors for zero pounds and zero pence. Ogle the well-sculpted marble bums in the V&A’s Sculpture Court, roar back at the Natural History Museum’s animatronic dinosaurs, or giggle at the squinty-eyed cherubs in Tate Britain, safe in the knowledge that you’re enjoying high culture at the lowest possible price. 4. Softbois  London is overrun with hot guy

Platinum Jubilee weekend in London: 40 royally good things to do

Platinum Jubilee weekend in London: 40 royally good things to do

As we kick off the month of June there's one huge block of days on the immediate horizon all ringed off with regal purple on our calendars – or more likely flagged as ‘OOF’ on our phone alerts. Like some seriously deep work of literature or art they have a level of meanings: that it's the Queen's Platinum Jubilee 2022 and that it’s a bumper four-day bank holiday weekend  for us Londoners. Whether you’re a flag and bunting kinda monarchist or proud marxist, there’s no getting away from it, from Thursday June 2 to Sunday June 5 we’re getting time off for good behaviour to mark Elizabeth II’s historic 70 years on the throne.  Now, we know that there are still rumbles about a tube strike over the Jubilee bank holiday weekend (plus a possible dampener to our Monday commute), but fear not, not everything is centred around Buckingham Palace or the Queen's Royal residence(s) if you don't live next door (Imagine taking in the parcels). There are plenty of events big and small across the capital to liven up your local ends. You probably won’t get sent to the Tower if you don’t want to take part in the festivities, but if you do, there’s plenty going on that not only celebrates Her Maj's loooong reign, but highlights how gloriously bonkers we are when it comes to National Celebrations, from a  pop-up corgi café to a 1950s-style pub on the London Eye (yes, really). Here are 40 ways to celebrate Lizzie’s longevity, from the super-royal to the, well, really not very royal at all. 1. Get in

This free festival is championing the work of deaf and disabled artists

This free festival is championing the work of deaf and disabled artists

Liberty festival is inviting you to step into someone else’s brain this weekend. Specifically, the brain of multidisciplinary artist Nwando Ebizie, who has a rare neurological disorder called visual snow syndrome that floods her vision with flickering static. It’s the spark behind her immersive exhibition ‘Distorted Constellations’, which is full of reality-bending holograms and icy Afrofuturist sounds she’s perfected as her after-dark alter ego, pop star Lady Vendredi. Liberty is a two-day free festival where deaf and disabled artists take over venues across Waltham Forest. And there’s a party vibe running through the line-up. Deaf Rave is a Saturday night out that’s full of sign-language rap by performers including hip hop star Signkid. They’ll carve words into the air with a fluency that you’ll appreciate way more if you go to the festival’s free British Sign Language (BSL) taster workshop first. There are more visuals on offer at two dance performances that showcase the power and potential of disabled bodies. Zimbabwean dancer Shyne Phiri’s career was cut short by a spinal injury; in ‘Outside In’, he explores ideas of finding comfort in nature in an installation surrounded by projections of Walthamstow’s green spaces. In Candoco’s ‘You and I Know’, two disabled dancers perform a moving duet about what it’s like to fall in love, over and over again. The line-up also includes: documentary ‘The Unlimited House of Krip’, which follows a voguing crew of deaf performers; the ma

Celebrate 30 years of ‘Heathers’ at these anniversary screenings

Celebrate 30 years of ‘Heathers’ at these anniversary screenings

Revisit the bleakest high school comedy of the 1980s at these thirtieth anniversary events It’s a frankly frightening 30 years since ‘Heathers’ opened in cinemas. Teen movie connoisseurs have treasured the 1988 cult film since then, and it’s easy to see why. There are brutal put-downs. Gory murders. Oh, and ’80s-tastic fashions the ‘Clueless’ gals would kill for. The wondrous Winona Ryder and the perma-smouldering bad boy Christian Slater play a pair of vengeful young psychopaths who’d probably be horrified at the thought of entering their fourth decade, but don’t let that stop you celebrating at one of these special screenings of the meticulously remastered movie re-release. 1 Have fun in the sun Croquet, tennis, and alfresco dates: the ‘Heathers’ clique are all about the vitamin D, so an outdoor screening is the perfect way to pay ultimate homage to them. Rooftop Film Clubs’ screening also offers stunning views, cocktails and a tasty all-American snack line-up. Bussey Building. Peckham Rye Overground. Fri Aug 10. £15.95. 2 See it for just £5 Enjoy a teen classic at pocket-money prices at beloved indie cinema the Genesis. Plus, there’s a thoroughly grown-up, brick-walled on-site bar where you can sink a pint afterwards – or go for mineral water, whatever your sexual orientation. Genesis Cinema. Tube: Stepney Green. Aug 14. £5. 3 Dig out your shoulderpads The late-night screening hosted by Rio Cinema in Dalston features a costume competition: get your best preppy ’80s high sc

Five places to celebrate World Vegan Day in London

Five places to celebrate World Vegan Day in London

Going vegan might sound seriously hardcore. But thanks to London's health food boom and an outspoken band of celebrity vegans (Morrissey, we’re looking at you) it feels easier than ever to go animal-free. A buzzing vegan scene is serving up everything from Instagramable salads to dangerously good junk food, proving that veganism needn’t be a total falafel. It’s a chance to challenge your tastebuds, find new haunts, help our furry friends and get a smug glow without ever setting foot in a gym. To mark today’s World Vegan Day, here are five great places for when you want to veg out in style. EAT   A photo posted by UGLY VEGAN (@uglyvegan) on Jun 27, 2016 at 1:34am PDT Hackney hideaway Black Cat Cafe has a scarily realistic fish free fish and chips, delicious arancini, as well as communal tables that are great for making new vegan friends. 76 Clarence Rd. Hackney Central Overground. SHOP     A photo posted by The Third Estate (@thethirdestatelondon) on Jun 22, 2016 at 8:12am PDT Direct your feet to Camden-based ethical emporium The Third Estate for leather-free shoes including Doc Martens-style kicks and brocade brogues - plus fancy-pants organic underwear. 27 Brecknock Rd. Camden Town. DRINK   A photo posted by The Full Nelson Deptford (@thefullnelsondeptford) on Oct 16, 2016 at 8:17am PDT From egg whites in cocktails to refined fish bladders in beer, boozing while vegan can be tough. The arrival of new veggie pub The Full Nelson is great news for anyone wh