Mantel understood that her More, like her Cromwell and her Anne, reflects cultural projections and agendas no less than Bolt's. "All historical fiction is really contemporary fiction," she told me, "We always write from our own time."
Halfway through Kingsman, I was having such a good time I thought I could watch this again. And although I would have changed that final derriere-centric scene, this is mostly great entertainment made by a team at the top of their game.
For many it's been a struggle to get there. Young actors emerge from their training weighed down by debt, and - given that less than 2% of actors earn over £20,000 a year from their acting - many leave the profession in the first 5 to 10 years, to seek financial security, dignity, and some quality of life.
Immersion is the word. He knew of nothing else it would seem until music came along. It's the sort of fate to which one cannot attach a value or even adequately describe. Call it the gift, the blue touch paper that leads to the muse.
My last memory of my famous cousin John Masefield dates from the early 1960s, when I visited him at his home, Burcote Brook, on the Thames at Abingdon near Oxford. As the author of over seventy works of poetry, non-fiction, novels, plays and children's books, and as Poet Laureate for more than thirty years, John was already a literary legend.
I don't know how many people had suggested Cuba when I was planning my travels last year. There was a lot of talk about the country going through a period of change. Many said that the old charm was gradually disappearing.
I have always been fascinated by Georgian culture. The sensuality, self irony, delicacy, tact and tradition - its neorealist qualities, brought to life with a unique cultural aesthetic, through the cinematic lense and prism of the arts.
Two films set in South America come from different angles but touch on corruption and brutality in marginalised societies.
Artist Hugo Dalton took part in an unusual performance at the Royal College of Music this week. In the exquisite Britten Hall, deep in the college basement, he collaborated with Indonesian pianist Imma Setiadi in a rendition of Debussy Preludes that they have titled Debussy Explosion.
A while back, I was asked by a horror fan who had never seen the movie whether it would live up to his expectations. I was about to answer an enthusiastic 'yes' when I paused; all of my experiences of Poltergeist are filtered through having first seen it in my early teens.
When I heard that the Natural History Museum will replace Dippy The Dinosaur with a blue whale, my first instinct outrage. I was wrong. It's time to let Dippy go.
An audacious, stylish, hilarious, dazzling and buzzy thrill trip. Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' adapted from Thomas Pynchon's 2009 novel bursts with colour and images. Sit back and just go with it. Doc Sportello will do the rest.
The Hard Problem is Tom Stoppard's first new play since 2006's Rock & Roll and therefore this is a much anticipated production at the National Theatre. The Hard Problem in hand is simply, what is consciousness? But the play itself is actually hard going.
Remarkably, this is the first biography about MLK made for the big screen. The film is about a very specific moment in the city of Selma, Alabama, when black civil rights activist Martin Luther King (MLK) life, had given his "I have a dream" speech and received the Nobel peace prize, but was still frustrated by the lack of genuine progress on civil rights.
It started as a guilty pleasure. A simple way to abdicate intellectual responsibility for an hour and look at attractive people talking about meaningless things, feeling smug about how great London looks and bathing in the extended idea that ALL our lives could actually be TV-ready with just a bit more editing and a more committed use of Instagram.
The thread tying together all this excitement about the new Ghostbusters is the idea that it's good for old culture to be remade in a more politically and morally acceptable way. But is it? Heaven help anyone who thinks movies should be fun (and that classic movies should be left alone) rather than being turned into fat adverts for sexual equality.