Rave to the grave with the first trailer for Brian Welsh’s euphoric coming-of-age film Beats, based on Kieran Hurley’s celebrated Fringe show of the same name
West Lothian, 1994. The Tory government are waging war on youth culture and clamping down on the UK’s illegal rave scene with the introduction of the Criminal Justice Bill that outlaws parties where the music is “predominantly characterised by the emission of a succession of repetitive beats”.
That’s the backdrop for Beats, Brian Welsh’s coming-of-age film following two 15-year-old best pals, Johnno (Cristian Ortega) and Spanner (Lorne Macdonald), who are about to be separated when the former moves out of the rough council estate where they grew up, to a shiny new Barratt Homes-style development in a posher neighbourhood. One last big night out is in order in this vibrant film based on Kieran Hurley’s celebrated Edinburgh Fringe show of the same name. We caught the film at its UK premiere at Glasgow Film Festival and gave it the full five stars
As well as being a funny and bittersweet film about friendship, Beats also has an intoxicating rave scene in which the film breaks free of its grim reality and embraces the hallucinatory. The film features a soundtrack curated by the mighty JD Twitch of Optimo, and features tracks from LFO, Plastikman, The Prodigy, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, The Belleville Three, Carl Craig, Liquid Liquid, Hudson Mohawke and Leftfield, as well as a new re-record by Orbital. The film’s original score is by The Golden Filter.
The Netflix Channel 4 adventure drama The End of the F***ing World is being filmed in Swansea.Filming on the second series of the show centred on the Rowberry Fashion store in Port Tennant on Tuesday with security and crews all on site from 7am until 5pm.Show star Jessica Barden, 26, who takes on the lead character of Alyssa, happily greeted onlookers as shooting took place.June Jones, who owns Rowberry, said she had to shut off the bridal section for the day for the filming.She said: “All the people going past were asking if they could be extras.
Mike Leigh’s films have always been first and foremost about people. He makes incredibly rich and detailed character studies, famously conducting his actors through months of improv work before he even sits down to write a screenplay. Somehow, that’s been the case even when he’s occasionally tackled famous historical subjects, like 19th-century Romantic painter J.M.W. Turner. Topsy-Turvy recounts the creation of The Mikado, but everybody on screen, from Gilbert and Sullivan themselves down to the smallest member of the ensemble, registers just as vividly as do the wholly invented characters in Naked or Secrets & Lies.
That’s what makes Leigh’s latest effort such an anomaly. Peterloo doesn’t deliberately skimp on character, but it’s the first of his movies in which no inividual makes much of an impression, and each one is fundamentally subordinate to the larger event being painstakingly chronicled. “Peterloo” is the nickname given to a massacre of unarmed civilians by cavalry soldiers that occurred on August 16, 1819, at St. Peter’s Field in Manchester. (Just as we now strip the “Water” from Watergate for every similar scandal, they stripped the “Water” from Waterloo, suggesting an equivalent to Napoleon’s then-recent bloody defeat.) Eigtheen people were killed in the melee, with hundreds more injured; the movie builds to the horror, eventually showing just what happens when men on horseback charge into a crowd with their swords drawn and start indiscriminately slashing at people who are just trying to get out of the way.
To his credit, Leigh is less interested in the massacre itself than he is in the series of political machinations that inexorably led to it. His challenge: That’s an incredibly dry subject—England’s equivalent of Ben Stein droning on to Ferris Bueller’s classmates about the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act. Here, the proximate cause of all the trouble is tariffs imposed on imported grain, known as the Corn Laws; widespread dissatisfaction with these laws, which benefited wealthy landowners at the expense of everyone else, resulted in demands for parliamentary reform.
Peterloo makes an effort to demonstrate how this affected a typical Manchester family, opening with one weary soldier (David Moorst) returning home from Waterloo and subsequently becoming semi-radicalized as a result of the deprivation. Mostly, though, the film consists of public meetings at which organizers bellow things like “The object of Parliament ought to be the general good, the equal protection, the security of the person and property of each individual, and therefore labor—the poor man’s only property—ought to be as sacred as any other property!” That sort of rhetoric almost always gets exhausting in a hurry (even MAGA-heads who wait in line all day to see Trump free-associate often leave early), and it represents a sizable chunk of this lengthy film’s first hour [ . . . ]
After being embodied twice (by Alain Delon in “Plein Soleil” in 1960 and by Matt Damon in “The Talented Mr. Ripley” in 1999), the sociopathic character dreamed up by novelist Patricia Highsmith is about to make his comeback in a television series.
In 1955, the novelist Patricia Highsmith published the first of five books about Mr. Ripley, adapted no less than twice on the silver screen. The first of these was Plein Soleil in 1955 then, forty years later came The Talented Mr. Ripley, directed by Anthony Minghella, starring Matt Damon and Jude Law in the lead roles in 1999. The plot? In New York of the 1950s, Tom Ripley, a penniless but ambitious young man, lives off scams until the rich Herbert Greenleafasks him to go to Sicily to find his son, Dickie, and bring him back to his obligations. Once in Italy, Tom dives into a luxury lifestyle and develops an extreme (and slightly manic) admiration for Dickie, which will lead him to the murder of the rich playboy. Today, this cult novel is about to get a new life as a series. According to Deadline, the latter will draw directly on the five novels written by Patricia Highsmith, namely The Talented Mr. Ripley, Ripley Under Ground, Ripley’s Game, The Boy Who Followed Ripley and Ripley Under Water. The award-winning screenwriter Steven Zaillian who received an Oscar for Best Screenplay for Schindler’s List in 1994, will adapt the novel. Watch this space… [ . . . ]
Otherwise working in period films is all pros and no cons, says Lesley Manville
She loves clothes and costume dramas and so Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread (2017), set in the haute couture world of London in 1954, was a perfect fit. Lesley Manville plays Cyril Woodcock, sister to Daniel Day-Lewis’ gifted but obsessive couturier, Reynolds Woodcock
Talking about the preparation for her role, Lesley says over the phone from London, “I knew I was going to do the film about seven months before we started filming so I had lots of time to research the period of the film, the 50s, the history of fashion, the world of fashion leading up to that. I had time to think about the character and how I might play her. I had lots of sessions and meetings with Paul Thomas Anderson, I had a few with Daniel Day Lewis, lots of costume fittings with Mark Bridges. You put all the research, the work and the preparation in and then you start to shoot the film. That is when everybody has to try and find a way to create something that is going to work and going to be interesting.”
Insisting there aren’t any cons to working in a period film, the 63-year-old says, “I love costume dramas because you put on these clothes and when you go to the set everything is in the right period which helps you feel very much in that world. I find it all a great help and it is such a beautiful period as well. Women dressed so beautifully at that time in history. Everything about it was helpful. Sometimes your corset is a bit tight! (laughs) Apart from that it is all pros, no cons.” [ . . . ]