The cultural highlights we’re looking forward to this autumn
We’ve often wondered why spring gets all the credit for newness. Autumn feels more like the beginning of things as the world returns with renewed vigour from summer’s hiatus and all the best films and exhibitions open. Angela Kennedy and the That’s Not My Age team, round up a selection of exciting cultural debuts and events, including some of our favourite TV shows, launching this season.
Film – Mrs Harris Goes to Paris
Any film with Isabelle Huppert (The Piano Teacher/Call my Agent) draws me like a magnet. Pair her with the awesome Lesley Manville, both now starring in Mrs Harris Goes to Paris, and I’m hooked before reading a single review. Mrs. Harris (Manville) is a charlady from 50s London who falls in love with a client’s Dior dress and longs to own one. She saves up for a trip to Paris’ famous House of Dior where none other than Mme Colbert (Huppert) is at the helm. Both women know how to show their frosty side so it doesn’t take much imagination to picture the ensuing scenes of French hauteur! Having sat through many Paris couture shows in my early days as a fashion reporter, I can vouch for that sinking ‘imposter syndrome’ feeling, but this promises a triumphant, jolly Cinderella story ending. AK
In cinemas nationwide, September 30
Cormac McCarthy’s seminal novel, The Road marked a turning point in post-apocalyptic novels. Although it was published 16 years ago – with the recent worldwide virus – it seems all too pertinent again. Nothing could ever be as heartbreakingly bleak and yet, I am looking forward to his eagerly awaited new novel The Passenger. Pre-publishing snippets suggest that it’s not short on drama. Set in the American South, it follows protagonist Bobby Western as he dives into his dubious family history thwarted by shadowy organisations, the atom bomb legacy, a crashed jet and missing passenger. What’s not to set the pulse racing already? Luckily, we won’t have to wait as long for the next book because this will be followed by a companion book, Stella Maris and ultimately sold as a box set. AK
Picador, October 25, RRP £20
TV – Happy Valley
BAFTA award-winning series, Happy Valley, is returning for its third and final series and we can’t wait!!! The crime-drama is worth three exclamation marks for its great writing, gripping plots and the strong, complex women that commandeer the show. Sergeant Catherine Cawood (Sarah Lancashire) is back, on the cusp of retirement, yet tackling a gangland murder and ongoing drug-related problems in the Valley. Her own complicated family history continues with sister Clare Cartwright (played brilliantly by Siobhan Finneran) and her grandson Ryan (Rhys Connah), who is now 16 and deciding what relationship he wants with his mother’s rapist/father Tommy Lee Royce (played by James Norton). Who is, of course, linked to the new murder case and even though the release date hasn’t been announced yet, we’re already on the edge of our seats.
BBC, date TBC this autumn
Exhibition – Kaffe Fassett: The Power of Pattern
Textile titan Kaffe Fassett will be a familiar name to craft enthusiasts everywhere. His long, fruitful career spans some fifty years and this exhibition honours his vision: displaying a range of beautiful quilts made from his textiles. Fassett has elevated his craft to an art form and at the age of 84, shows no sign of slowing down. It’s been inspiring to watch Fassett power his way through patterns, creating a kaleidoscope of colour that transcends the decades. Artists Brandon Mably and Philip Jacobs have been invited to display their work alongside, adding context to Fassett’s story and thus promising a truly immersive retrospective. Shamefully, I’ve never managed to finish my Kaffe Fassett tapestry kit (stashed away in a drawer), seems now’s the time to give it another go… AK
The Fashion Textile Museum, London, 23 September 2022 – 12 March 2023
TV – Industry
What is it about toxic working environments that makes compulsive viewing? The machinations of highly charged bankers at Pierpoint & Co, was a massive hit the first time round and series 2 continues following five young wannabe traders. Are they mollified and less hedonistic? Has the Me Too movement actually sunk into that macho management style? Razor sharp Harper Stern (Myha’la Herrold), the ambitious American star of the first series, is back along with Sarah Parish, (playing the predatory Nicole Craig). Teasers suggests that nothing much has changed regarding office dynamics when the boss booms, “You don’t work with me – you work for me”. The publishing world had its moments, but nothing on this. AK
BBC1, September 27
Exhibition – Edward Hopper’s New York
While I’m grateful to live in London, arguably the best city in the world for art galleries, there’s nowhere quite like New York. The Whitney Museum of American Art is set to host an unprecedented exhibition of the great American artist, Edward Hopper, who was wonderful at capturing the aura and vibe of this ever changing city. His iconic works have been etched in our psyche for years, especially Office at Night – that bleak scenario says it all. There was an exhibition at Tate Modern in 2004 (which luckily, I saw), but this promises to be extra special as it focuses on the city he loved and lived in for nearly six decades (he died in 1967). More than 200 of his paintings will be on show, as will some of his personal correspondence and notebooks. Was he as solitary a soul as much of his work portrays? Go and see for yourself. AK
The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York City, 19 October 2022 – 2 March 2023
TV – The Good Fight
We were late coming to The Good Fight fandom, having missed the prequel series (The Good Wife), but after watching just one episode we were hooked. It’s definitely not too late to join in on this sixth and final series. Starring the brilliant duo of Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) and Liz Reddick (Audra McDonald) as lawyers at the top of their game in a predominately-black, city law firm. This series promises to be the most political yet, beginning with Diane suffering extreme déjà vu and lamenting that womens’ right to choose have been dialled back decades, Trump is running for President (again) and the Cold War is back on. This is the kind of social reflection that the show does so brilliantly, drawing a direct line from viewer to the fiction. Add to it extreme-from-life office politics, legal intrigue and a stellar cast, it is a thrillingly entertaining roller-coaster ride.
Paramount+, streaming now [Hopefully it will make its way to the Channel4 family soon, like its previous series.]
What are you looking forward to this autumn?