Stephen Philip

His Roots was in the Struggle

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Review of 'Tupac: Resurrection', director Lauren Lazin

Tupac Shakur is the Janus-faced poster boy for the hip-hop community. He lived the life, walked the walk, and paid bitterly for the myth he promulgated and tried to challenge. Tupac: Resurrection offers a personal, warts and all view of the life of the man who became the biggest selling rap artist of all time. Eerily, it seems as if Tupac is talking from his grave, as his prescient narration guides our interpretation of the abundance of imagery, stills, home videos, TV interviews, and excerpts of pop videos and stage appearances.

Wiping the Slate Clean

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Review of 'Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind', director Michel Gondry

This is a dazzling and unique angle on the romantic comedy, penned by one of Hollywood's most original writers, Charlie Kaufman (Being John Malkovich, Adaptation). The rom com of late has been a genre where reality has been sucked out to be replaced by syrupy sentiment and synthetic Mills and Boon cliches. Instead Eternal Sunshine views the romantic comedy through the frame of a wry emotional realism, by looking at the angst, heartbreak and unfulfilled promise of romance, although the film remains tender, uplifting and inspiring.

Picture Perfect

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Review of 'Citizen Kane', director Orson Welles

This DVD release of Citizen Kane (1941) in a brand new print is a moment for celebration. Firstly, it is a dazzling story about power. Loosely based on the life story of William Hearst, the newspaper baron who was the Berlusconi or Murdoch of his day, the film sets out to provide a portrait of the vanity and excesses of a contradictory elusive personality.

Hollywood: Rewriting the Script

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The movement against capitalism and war is having an impact on what's being produced by Hollywood.

With the rise of the anti-war movement, Hollywood is reaching back into the murkiest aspects of its history and reviving tried and tested techniques to try to crush dissent. Actors committed to speaking up against war are threatened with losing their jobs, like the rerun of a bad Cold War movie. The treatment of Martin Sheen, who plays the president in the television series 'The West Wing', is one such example. Perhaps he has put in too many unscheduled appearances on anti-war stages for the likes of NBC who are now under pressure to sack him.

When You Hear the Warning

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Review of 'The War Game', director Peter Watkins

With Bush's recent adoption of a pre-emptive nuclear strike strategy, and the increasing anxiety we feel about living in a more unstable, conflict-riven world, the DVD release of 'The War Game' could not have been more timely. 'The War Game', produced 38 years ago, is a drama documentary about a 'limited' nuclear attack, and still retains its political impact and urgency.

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