Sally Campbell

Uncut Gems

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There is a moment about half way through this panic-inducing film, where Howard Ratner’s (Adam Sandler) soon-to-be-ex-wife stares him in the face coldly and says, “I think you’re the most annoying person on the planet. I hate being with you, I hate looking at you, and if I had my way, I would never see you again.”

It’s funny because it takes you out of the film for a moment, to acknowledge that this is, indeed, how you normally feel about Adam Sandler.

But his performance in this relentlessly stressful tale about a needy, creepy, diamond dealer in New York is spot on.

Uncut Gems

Issue section: 
Issue: 

There is a moment about half way through this panic-inducing film, where Howard Ratner’s (Adam Sandler) soon-to-be-ex-wife stares him in the face coldly and says, “I think you’re the most annoying person on the planet. I hate being with you, I hate looking at you, and if I had my way, I would never see you again.”

It’s funny because it takes you out of the film for a moment, to acknowledge that this is, indeed, how you normally feel about Adam Sandler.

But his performance in this relentlessly stressful tale about a needy, creepy, diamond dealer in New York is spot on.

Eyes on the prize

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The devastating blow of last month’s general election defeat will be hard for Labour activists and all those who willed a Corbyn victory to get over.

A battle for interpretation began immediately after the exit poll, with Parliamentary Labour Party figures leaping onto our screens to tell us Corbyn was entirely to blame. But, as Joseph Choonara shows in this issue, the problems for Labour date back to the Blair years.

A year of hope and horror

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Looking back at the world of 2019 we can see examples of fantastic bravery and resistance in the face of fierce state repression, but also attempts by the right to gain ground. Sally Campbell asks what awaits us in the year to come.

This year Graffiti has appeared on walls from Hong Kong to Santiago reading, “We won’t return to normality, because normality was the problem.”

As a slogan it expresses well the predicament of the moment. For the past decade “normality” has meant misery for millions of people across the globe, as working class people and the poor were made to pay for the last economic crisis.

All too believable tale of trauma

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Unbelievable is a quietly devastating drama based on the true story of an 18 year old woman who in 2008 reported to police that she had been raped at knife-point by an intruder, only to be disbelieved and eventually even charged with wasting police time.

Unlike too many other crime dramas, there is no glamorisation of brutal sex crimes and serial predators here. Unbelievable focuses instead on the trauma suffered by the young woman, Marie Adler (played by Booksmart’s Kaitlyn Dever) and other victims of what turns out to be a serial rapist.

Next steps on climate

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The global climate strike on Friday 20 September surpassed all expectations. Greta Thunberg has estimated there were over 4 million protesting worldwide, from Europe to America, to Kenya, to the Pacific Islands.

In Britain there were perhaps 350,000 on the streets, including 100,000 in London and tens of thousands across Scotland.

This puts the day on a par with the 15 February 2003 protests against the Iraq invasion and the global women’s marches in 2017, with the notable difference that the climate strike was the only one of those to take place on a weekday.

Their outrage and ours

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Boris Johnson’s apparently sudden decision to close down parliament for five weeks as Britain approaches the Brexit deadline provoked outrage from (almost) all quarters.

Primarily interpreted as a manoeuvre to prevent MPs stopping a no deal Brexit, the “proroguing” has also been decried as an affront to democracy. Both are true.

The Financial Times is so dismayed by Johnson’s suspension of democratic processes that it has come as close as it is ever likely to to backing Jeremy Corbyn for prime minister:

Gwen

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Set amid the slate-filled landscape of mid-19th century Snowdonia, this gothic tale of black-hearted capitalism features powerful performances from Eleanor Worthington-Cox and Maxine Peake.

It is a powerful story of grief, adolescence, suspicion and superstition that builds an atmosphere of intense dread, broken only by the realisation that the truth of industrialisation is more brutal than anything young Gwen (Worthington-Cox) can conjure in her imagination.

May is going, what next for Corbyn?

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Theresa May has announced she's standing down, yet there is still no end in sight for the Brexit debacle. Sally Campbell analyses the European election results and the pressures coming to bear on Corbyn.

Goodbye Theresa. Socialist Review is happy to file you away in the box marked “Tory detritus”. Private Eye’s new issue following May’s announcement that she would be resigning on 7 June features the headline, “Theresa May Memorial Issue: The Prime Minister’s Legacy in Full”, followed by a blank space. But this is far too kind.

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