Robin Catling

Writer; performer; project manager; sports coach; all-round eccentric.
Robin Catling has written 906 posts for Everything Express

Review: The Lady in the Van (2015)

In 1973, lacrimose Northern playwright Alan Bennett allowed the homeless Miss Sheppard to park her van in his driveway in Camden’s smart Gloucester Crescent. She stayed fifteen years. Bennett (The History Boys) adapts his much-loved memoir and stage play to the screen, with the ineffable Maggie Smith (Best Exotic, Quartet) in the title role as … Continue reading

Review: Crimson Peak (2015)

Mia Wasikowksa’s young spinster Edith Cushing is swept off her feet by impoverished English aristocrat Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hidddleston), touring America with his chilly sister Lucille (Jessica Chastain). Ghost-whisperer Edith should have run a mile from both of them, but instead, marries into the Gothic monstrosity that is Allerdale Hall, crumbling into the red clay … Continue reading

Review: Spectre (2015)

In what looks like Daniel Craig’s swan-song, the Bond team reunite in an all-too familiar, albeit stylishly executed, rummage through the toy box. The lame plotting links the other three Craig outings, while our gritty blonde Bond-shell does what he does in exotic locations, with a variety of transport and weapons, two Bond girls and … Continue reading

Review: River (BBC TV)

Do we need another TV cop show? When it’s as brilliant as the BBC’s River, with it’s London-based Scandi-noir feel and a stunning central performance from Stellan Skarsgaard as the grieving, ghost-whispering detective, the answer is definitely yes. From the outset, River is the Sixth Sense detective, with Skarsgaard’s (Thor, Pirates) John River speaking with … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

Jim Jarmusch (Ghost Dog, Down by Law) returns as writer-director in this languid, mordant antidote to vampire movies. Tom Hiddlestone (Thor, Avengers, Warhorse) and Tilda Swinton (Narnia) are the undead husband and wife Adam and Eve. Largely ‘vegetarian’ for decades, a changing world threatens their peaceful life in the shadows, an existence unchanged for centuries, … Continue reading

Review: River (BBC TV)

Do we need another TV cop show? When it’s as brilliant as River, with it’s London-based Scandi-noir feel and a stunning central performance from Stellan Skarsgaard as the grieving, ghost-whispering detective, the answer is definitely yes. From the outset, River is the Sixth Sense detective, with Skarsgaard’s (Thor, Pirates) John River speaking with the dead … Continue reading

Review: Suffragette (2015)

The script has forgiveable flaws; the performances are universally superb; the story is worth the telling in the twenty-first century. So why did director of photography Ed Grau have to spoil the whole thing by smearing vaseline on the lens and shooting during an Earthquake?

Review: From Darkness (BBC TV)

Proving my old adage that you haven’t made it on TV ’til you have your own cop show, this time it’s Ann-Marie Duff’s turn to play detective. Unfortunately this earnest attempt at a female-led cop show to rival the Danes goes off the rails inside three minutes. Duff (Shameless, Suffragette) is retired constable Claire Church, … Continue reading

Review – Spooks: The Greater Good (2015)

The BBC’s long-running espionage series moves from TV to the big screen, this time trying to save Britain’s home intelligence service from a CIA takeover in the face of a Pakistani revenge-terrorism campaign. All the clichés of latterday pop-TV terror plots mix with old fashioned Le Carre legacy; the question is can it open up … Continue reading

Review: the Martian (2015)

In a welcome return to form by Ridley Scott, a decent script by Drew Goddard from Andy Weir’s book puts Prometheus and The Counsellor behind us. Left for dead on Mars, Matt Damon is Robinson Crusoe in Space; his Everyman charm leavens the tension with humour, and despite a melodramatic third act, continues a line … Continue reading

Review: CSI Cyber Season 1

Show runners Zuicker, Mendelson and Donahue give up on CSI-cities (they missed CSI Cricklewood) to give themselves free reign with the FBI’s glossed-over cyber-crimes team. Two lurid opening episodes fail to produce anything other than another glossy TV franchise behemoth assembled in expensive kit-form. Including yet another theme tune by The Who. The CSI Cyber … Continue reading

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