Alex Cameron, Jemima Kirke and the behaviour of men: ‘I can’t get away from writing about it’

The Australian artist has been under fire for his ironic personas but his new album is a left-turn, and a gift to the actor he wrote it for No matter how hard I try, I cant get away from writing about the behaviour of men, Alex Cameron says. The Australian singer is in a hotel room in Salt Lake City, Utah, a week away from the release of his third record, Miami Memory, and more than 3,200km away from New York City where he lives with his partner, the artist, actor and Girls star Jemima Kirke, for whom he wrote the record. Camerons relationship with Kirke is mapped on to the record in ways that are incredibly open and occasionally …

‘Dad described the plot of Psycho at the dinner table’: how my parents taught me to love film

The Guardian film critic on how his mother and father shaped his relationship with cinema My parents are dead now, and I think about them both every day. They loved the cinema, and would go all the time as a young couple. My mum had a crush on the young Marlon Brando after seeing him in On The Waterfront and as Mark Antony in Julius Caesar. But it was my dad who was the more voluble about film, if not necessarily the more opinionated. Albert Desmond Bradshaw came to London from Belfast in the 1950s to be a photographer. That was where he met my mum, Mollie, who was working as a secretary. They lived in Highgate, north London and …

Is this the cultural moment of the hot priest?

Fleabag had the hot priest, Grantchester has its sleuthing vicar and even HBOs Young Pope sequel is returning soon but why are we so infatuated with them? Are we living in the cultural moment of the hot priest? my editor asked. I wanted an assignment, and for my sins she gave me one. Theres the one on Fleabag, she said. And the an Irish priest (Andrew Scott) whose vow of celibacy is temporarily compromised by Fleabag. He, in turn, punctures Fleabags cynical shell. Then theres Sidney Chambers (James Norton). Chambers rides a bicycle around the bucolic postwar English countryside, getting mixed up in intrigue while battling his own demons, including combat PTSD. Since Chambers isnt sworn to celibacy, he also …

Couples Therapy: why would anyone agree to televise their therapy sessions?

The showrunners behind an honest, if uncomfortable, new series explain how they got four couples to allow cameras in the room with their therapist Before the closed glass door of a therapists office in New York, a series of couples brace themselves for a slog. One man fidgets with a 3D puzzle; a woman, eyes closed, grips the chair arms. In the chairs, facing a Rorschach-esque painting, the couples seem aware of, if not reacting to, a discreetly installed camera one womans attempt to tuck in her partners shirt tag, met with a shrug and rebuff, morphs into a shoulder rub. But the anticipation seems to cut through any self-consciousness, landing back on the two people their unit, about to …

You Are Already Having Sex With Robots

Henry the sex robot is the “mind” of a “woman” trapped in the “body” of a “man.” When you talk to Henry, you’re really talking to the artificial intelligence database Realbotix developed for its female predecessor, Harmony. To masculinize Henry, Realbotix founder and CEO Matt McMullen and five other “robot heads” sit with Henry doing R&D, which amounts to chatting Henry up. “Henry, how was your day?” McMullen asks. “Just fine, baby,” Henry says. “But when are you going to take me out to dinner?” The humans all look at each other. “That didn’t sound quite right,” McMullen says, and the others agree. The language database they’re developing for Henry shouldn’t include soliciting nights out on the town. “Sometimes Henry …

Edna OBrien: I want to go out as someone who spoke the truth

The Irish novelist on her searing new novel, scandal, regrets, religion and… football In May 2017, I watched Richard Ford attests, a work of profound empathy and grace, its narrative leavened by deftly wrought moments of maternal intimacy that possess a quiet but almost luminous intensity. OBrien is 88. Girl is her 19th novel and she has intimated that it may be her last. It may yet prove to be her most powerful. The idea for the novel came from a newspaper report about a girl who was found wandering in Sambisa Forest in Nigeria. Every day the newspapers are full of novels waiting to be written, but this small item resonated in my inner mind, she recalls. The girl …

Streaming: is the Brazilian film Araby the movie of the decade?

A Brazilian road movie thats been wowing critics for two years finally makes its UK debut I was late getting to this weeks selected film though not as late as film distributors in the UK: it has never been picked up for a cinema or even a DVD release. For more than two years, respected colleagues have been talking up the merits of declare it the best film of this fast-closing decade. Having missed it on its year-long festival run in 2017, I waited for a chance to see it on a big screen. That chance hasnt come, but Mubi has, as it so often does, stepped into the breach. Araby is streaming for free on FestivalScope until the end …

Taylor Swift: Lover review a return to past glories

Taylor Swifts latest album revisits the catchy pop and romantic concerns that made her name Taylor Swift is more of a lover than a fighter. The singer-songwriter doesnt say it out loud on her seventh album the successor to 2017s 1989 via the confessionals of Jack Antonoff, producer of Lordes 2017 album ME! a duet with You Need to Calm Down, a fabulously pitched takedown of haters, bigots and internet trolls, have exuded playfulness, tunefulness and wit in equal measure. An album so long is bound to be a mixed bag. Strong opener I Forgot That You Existed is a breezy kiss-off to an old flame or, perhaps the whole Kimye era: Lived in the shade you were throwing till …

Joseph Fiennes: Ive done my bit for society Ive illustrated the patheticness of misogyny

The star of the hit dystopian drama says he doesnt like to equate Donald Trumps politics with the show. But, he adds, sometimes you just have to point out the blazingly obvious Its alluded to in the novel someday, something will happen to Fred. Quite soon. In a neutral-looking cafe in central London, Joseph Fiennes is talking about the future of his role in The Handmaids Tale. Why, though? I plead with him. Why does he have to die? Its in the novel, Fiennes explains very patiently. Hes got to. Come on, there are some very angry women in red out there. When The Handmaids Tale first appeared on our screens in 2017, it was a bit like having an …

Euphoria review so explicit it makes Skins look positively Victorian

Zendaya is astonishing as the self-destructive Rue in a teen sexndrugs drama that hides hidden depths behind the Instagram angst Few new series have achieved such notoriety with quite the same speed as Sky Atlantic), the teen-populated Skins look positively Victorian. This pilot episode serves as both a taste and a warning: if you can accept that it depicts its world with the flippancy of an Instagram scroll, then its rewards are vast, particularly in terms of its emotional depth. But early on it brims with pills, drink, apps, erect penises, loving sex, cruel sex and nude pics, ever present and lurking, but horrifyingly casual, as if they are an inexorable part of these particular fictional, middle-class, suburban teenagers existences. …

WIRED Book of the Month: It Came From Something Awful

Any page of It Came From Something Awful would be the most shocking page of most books. Reading Dale Beran’s chronicle of 4chan, the anonymous imageboard where some of the internet’s worst scandals have been fomented, feels like scrolling through the forum itself. Each page turn sucks you ever deeper into chan culture, from emoticon cats telling you to “Please die” to harassment campaigns levied at adolescent girls to a man describing how he murdered his girlfriend. “Turns out it’s way harder to strangle someone to death than it looks in the movies,” that man said, alongside images of the woman’s dead body. Eventually, in Beran’s aggrandizing telling, 4chan’s crescendo of furious nihilism delivers President Trump to America. In 2017, …

Sunbathing topless should be a pleasure we can all enjoy | Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett

Its sad that younger women are covering up on the beach for fear of harassment, says Guardian columnist Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett According to sexual liberation movement. For me and other women growing up in a culture of British discomfort with all things bodily, these confident French women in Cannes or St Tropez seemed glamorous and worldly. A teenage obsession with French cinema helped me to discover the work of Franois Ozon; in come to seem change the rules in Malmo in 2009). After all, the chair of the citys sports and recreation committee wryly noted, many men have larger breasts than women. More recently, cultural and political movement is called during the recent heatwave after they were asked to cover …

Lena Dunham on Love Island: I’m asking the same question they do can you love after hurt?

When the writer and director arrived in Wales to shoot a new drama, she was nursing a broken heart and romantic ideas of British life. Then she discovered the reality soap opera… As I planned my summer in Wales, my head filled with visions of romance, I supposed Id do what the heroines of novels did when they crossed the pond for a new life: go to the shore to take the healing air. Meet a man and move into his stunning manor, possibly watched over by a sinister housemaid. Scurry through cobblestoned streets and into dusty bookshops, furtively pulling up the hood of my cloak. Go to a banquet and dance to piano music in a great hall. Taste …

The month’s best mixes: cosmic connections and oceanic electronics

ADAB brings Afrofuturism into the psychedelic mix, while Russell EL Butler taps into the African diaspora Neptunian Influence: ADAB When Tim Sweeney moved from Maryland to study at New York University in 1999, he signed up to host on the campus radio station, WNYU 89.1 FM. A largely solo affair in the early days, Sweeney spent his Tuesday evenings as Beats in Space, mixing live and talking to callers. When he started working for James Murphys DFA label, his star began to shine, tapping into the mid-00s punk-dance scene and honing his affable, downbeat charm. When he graduated in 2003, the show continued its now considered one of the longest running college radio shows in the US, and has featured …

The new 007 is a black woman don’t make her a Bond girl

Online joy over Lashana Lynch inheriting James Bonds codename may be premature. White men wont give up their hero status so easily Fans have been hoping for a black actor to play first rumoured as a possible successor to Lashana Lynch is going to be the new 007. There was much celebration on social media, which is understandable. But it may be a little premature. Casting black female actors as legacy characters is a great step towards rectifying the historical racism and sexism that has led to a disproportionate number of those characters being white men. But its only a step. Black women also need to be written with respect; they have to be presented as natural, worthy heroes who …

Men behaving badly: why cinema’s great hellraisers were a breed apart

Rip Torn belonged to a high-spirited tradition that was fuelled by too much booze and testosterone. Like it or not, we may never see their like again The death of the film and TV star Rip Torn, whose drunken exuberance so often resulted in the breaking of glass, the splintering of wood and the bandaging of limbs, has led the industry to ponder that exotic creature whose rocknroll behaviour, from the 1960s onwards, persisted for decades to tolerant chortling from the similarly inclined or wistfully well-behaved gentlemen of the press. And that creature is the hellraiser a term that originates from a defiant credo espoused by the hard-drinking, hard-living Hollywood legend Richard Burton: Peter OTooles death in 2013 led to …