Grab a cup of coffee, find a comfy seat and discover some my favourite blog posts, films, etc from this past week.
Things to watch
If you get a chance to see The Audience with Helen Mirren – go!!! It is phenomal! I saw the live broadcast from London at a cinema in Berlin and was blown away!
Here is a short synopsis (from their website):”For sixty years Elizabeth II has met each of her twelve Prime Ministers in a weekly audience at Buckingham Palace – a meeting like no other in British public life – it is private. Both parties have an unspoken agreement never to repeat what is said. Not even to their spouses.
The Audience breaks this contract of silence – and imagines a series of pivotal meetings between the Downing Street incumbents and their Queen. From Churchill to Cameron, each Prime Minister has used these private conversations as a sounding board and a confessional – sometimes intimate, sometimes explosive.
From young mother to grandmother, these private audiences chart the arc of the second Elizabethan Age. Politicians come and go through the revolving door of electoral politics, while she remains constant, waiting to welcome her next Prime Minister.”
The play does not follow chronological order, meaning Mirren in one scene plays a 30 year old Queen and in the next scene a 70 year old. The costume changes mostly happen on stage (and I have no idea how they do it) but even more impressive is how Helen Mirren adapts the way she moves and stands according the Quenn’s age. Amazing!
Speaking of this wonderful actress, the BBC just had an interesting programme, charting her career: The Many Faces of … Dame Helen Mirren.
Things to read
Essentially a fascinating and very well written (Greek) family saga. Eugenides traces one family from what is now Turkey, through terrible persecution and on to the US. In places, the writing is exceptional – his description of the monotony of working on a production line is phenomenal! I also very much appreciated the way he develops the characters and particularly the relationships. He is very compassionate and seems to like his characters, while also describing so well the subtle and undramatic changes in relationships that step by step lead to them being completely transformed.