The 10 best things to do this week: The Florida Project and Taylor Swift

Sean Baker’s much-anticipated film features incredible child-star performances, while the queen of pop unleashes her sixth album

Film

The Florida Project
Hitting cinemas in the UK this week is Sean Baker’s much-anticipated follow-up to Tangerine, which has some of the best child-star performances of the decade. A gentle swell of a film, which paints a picture of the lives and loves of the children and adults living in the perfectly pink but rundown Magic Castle motel, many of the cast are first-time actors, and all the more authentic because of it. Willem Dafoe puts in a career-defining performance, while seven-year-old Brooklynn Prince is the baby breakout star.

Paddington 2
This charming and sweet-natured sequel to 2014’s charming and sweet-natured original adds Hugh Grant to the mix as a faded and narcissistic actor who frames our adorable, marmalade-loving hero (voiced by Ben Whishaw) for theft. Fun for all the family, and no mistake. It’s in cinemas on 10 November.

Theatre

The Tin Drum
this adaptation of the novel by Günter Grass tells the story of Oskar, a three-year-old who decides to remain a child for ever. As surreal as the postwar novel itself, the play has Oskar as an implacable puppet (below) whose expression is the only thing that remains steady in a whirling world.
At Bristol Old Vic, 7-18 November

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie
Instantly endearing ... Everybody’s Talking About Jamie. Photograph: Publicity image

Instantly endearing and pumped full of catchy songs, this musical about a 16-year-old boy living in Sheffield, who decides to go to his school prom wearing a dress, feels like a vamped-up Billy Elliot. Based on the true story of Jamie Campbell, whose school tried to stop him from attending the celebration, it begins its second run, in London, on 6 November after a sellout debut in Sheffield earlier this year.
At the Apollo theatre, W1, 6 November to 21 April

Exhibitions and festivals

Red Star Over Russia
It has been 100 years since Russia’s October Revolution, and while the country has all but turned its back on communism, this exhibition captures the striking visual history of the nascent Soviet Union from 1905 to the death of Stalin. You’ll leave with a crimson-tinged world view.
At the Tate Modern, SE1, 8 November to 18 February

Maggi Hambling
As part of Homotopia, the LGBT+ arts and culture festival (to 25 November), painter and sculptor Maggi Hambling is being interviewed about her “lesbionic” life.
At Tate Liverpool, 8 November

North: Fashioning Identity
The north of England has a slightly dated, if iconic, underdog status that is often under-celebrated. Thankfully, an exploration of contemporary representations of the region is coming to London. Expect photos, fashion and artworks inspired or created by northerners such as Alasdair McLellan and Shirley Baker.
At Somerset House, WC2, 8 November to 4 February

Music

Bananarama

Bananarama
Original and best ... Bananarama. Photograph: Ilpo Musto/Redferns

This jaunt around the UK’s mid-sized venues marks the first time Bananarama’s original (and best) lineup of Siobhan Fahey, Keren Woodward and Sara Dallin have ever toured together. It’s not clear if Lananeeneenoonoo, the supergroup they formed with Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders and Kathy Burke, will be involved but here’s hoping.
The SSE Arena, Belfast, 9 November; touring to 9 December

Taylor Swift
Post-2012, every Taylor Swift album has come with a sonic shift. Red was her tentative shuffle away from country towards pop, while 2014’s 1989 was a full on, Max Martin-assisted lunge for superstar domination that changed everything. This Friday’s release, Reputation, from the singles at least, feels like a strange hotchpotch of electroclash, refried Lorde and Right Said Fred. Sort of intriguing.

Podcasts

You Must Remember This
Karina Longworth’s tantalisingly noir (and slightly campy) cult US podcast explores the forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century. In the runup to Halloween, the podcast began a new season exploring the lives of Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff: two middle-aged, foreign, struggling actors who became huge stars thanks to Dracula and Frankenstein. Sink your teeth into the first three episodes of the season, which reveal how Bela wasn’t able to capitalise on his new-found stardom and instead became trapped in a string of vampire roles.
youmustrememberthispodcast.com

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The Guide

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