Mini Reviews

I am China by Xiaolu Guo

In Village of Stone protagonist Coral describes her journey from poverty and abuse in a small fishing village to drab urban comfort as an adult in modern China.  In A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers  protagonist Z explores the gaps and connections, cultural and linguistic, between  England and China through her relationship with an English lover and her progress in…

The Past (Le Passé), France 2013

This wonderful absorbing big messy chunk of life, sprawling in front of its audience, is actually a vigilant dissection of bad choices and failed relationships by director Asghar Farhadi.


Snap Shot Song at the Barbican was a Guildhall student performance. Held in the very fine Milton Court Concert Hall, it it was great fun to be reminded that our top musicians  started somewhere.  Loads of energy, some good performances and where else will you get 150 performers for £10?  

Ruin Lust, Tate Britain

This promising notion of an examination of our obsession with decay and ruin fails to delivers. The works individually may be interesting but the aggregation feels arbitrary and incoherent.  Unenlightening. To 18 May.

Hockney, Printmaker, Dulwich Picture Gallery

After RA’s mega-canvases this small exhibition of prints and lithographs demonstrates Hockney’s  breadth and versatility.  Pictures that are lovely, interesting, funny, and irreverent.  To 11 May.

We studied journalism at Birkbeck and meet regularly to share our writing and ideas. Inspired by London’s 4th Plinth we set up our blog as a cultural exchange with reviews, stories, analysis and viewpoints.

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The 5th Plinthers

Film review: Room

Room, directed by Lenny Abrahamson, stands out amongst the selection of exceptional films released before the Academy Awards for its setting. Events in Room mostly take place in a house in the suburbs. It’s adapted from the book of the same name by Emma Donoghue. The book was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2010, and Donoghue has also written the screenplay for the film. 


The Lullaby Factory

Without a hot sick child or an even hotter Open House ticket it’s unlikely that you will be able to experience the delightful and idiosyncratic Lullaby Factory. For one day only in September the Lullaby Factory was open to the public and revealed its secrets to a charmed Open House audience.