The Magpie Anthology

What We’re Watching in August

There may be a heatwave occurring but sometimes it’s just cooler to be indoors… We’ve been watching some great tv with a glass of iced water (wine) to hand!

For a wonderful, coming of age film, you can’t beat How to Build a Girl – a truthful (ish) Caitlin Moran story of how Johana Morrigan (played beautifully by Beanie Feldstein) a sixteen year old schoolgirl longs to escape her Woverhampton housing estate and be a writer. After a disastrous appearance on TV reading her poetry she submits a review of the Annie soundtrack to prestigious music magazine D&ME and what follows is a hilarious move into becoming the magazine’s rock critic when she reinvents herself as Dolly Wilde.

It would be wrong to give too much away but between her chaotic family, dreams of stardom and her talking wall of famous people including Cleopatra and Jo March (all played themselves by well known actors) it’s a brilliant take on how we build ourselves into who we want to be – or in the case of Johanna, who we don’t necessarily want to be. A stellar cast includes Paddy Considine and Alfie Allen with cameos from Chris O’Dowd and Emma Thompson but the whole ensemble are brilliant at portraying life in the 1990s and what you have to do to succeed. On Amazon Prime currently…

Watch the trailer HERE

Also appropriate during these warm times is Andrew Davies’ adaptation of Vikram Seth’s novel published in 1993 and with 1,349 pages, the English language book is one of the longest novels published in a single volume.

Set in India in both fictional and real cities, the novel follows the story of four families over a period of eighteen months, and centres on Mrs. Rupa Mehra’s efforts to arrange the marriage of her younger daughter, Lata, to a ‘suitable boy’. Lata is a 19-year-old university student who refuses to be influenced by her domineering mother or opinionated brother, Arun. Her story revolves around the choice she is forced to make between her suitors Kabir, Haresh, and Amit. It’s beautifully shot and is just the sort of Sunday escapism that we all need! On BBC 1 and iPlayer.

Watch the trailer HERE

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