Queen Elizabeth II enjoyed her 92nd birthday on 21 April this year. You probably sent her a card. She'll be on our minds this long weekend as we celebrate the Queen's Birthday public holiday.
Unlike a lot of public holidays in Australia, the Queen's Birthday falls in winter with many of us spending the day rugged up on the couch instead of the usual camping, jet skiing, and other outdoor activities that fill up our summers. What better time to enjoy some couch time watching some of the great British TV shows and movies streaming now at SBS On Demand.
Next of Kin
London doctor Mona Harcourt (played by Archie Panjabi from The Good Wife) has her life shaken to the core when a bomb goes off in London on the same day that her brother is abducted and murdered in Pakistan. When her nephew becomes linked to both the bombing and his father's murder, Mona has to face the ultimate dilemma: how far would you go to keep your family safe?
A BAFTA-winning series, Criminal Justice was later adapted into The Night Of, is based. At the end of an uncharacteristic drug- and drink-fuelled night out, 21-year-old Ben finds himself charged with murder and facing life imprisonment.
London 1763, the capital of the world, the most cosmopolitan place on Earth. One in five women in London is making her living selling sex. In some areas brothels, run by indomitable Madams, are to be found on almost every street. Margaret Wells’ brothel is in a down-trodden area of the capital, but she’s making her move upwards, aiming to move her family and her girls and take a new house in the vibrant new area of Soho. Margaret is determined to take her piece of the wealth of this great city. She is hungry for success – even when her ambition begins to threaten everything she cares for.
The story of the foot soldiers of the early feminist movement - women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State. These women were not primarily from the genteel educated classes, they were working women who had seen peaceful protest achieve nothing. Radicalised and turning to violence as the only route to change, they were willing to lose everything in their fight for equality - their jobs, their homes, their children and their lives. Maud was one such foot soldier. The story of her fight for dignity is as gripping and visceral as any thriller, it is also heart-breaking and inspirational.
Adapted from J.G. Ballard's dystopian novel, High-Rise stars Tom Hiddleston as a young doctor, Robert Laing, who after his divorce, moves into a new apartment west of London. Despite seeking soulless anonymity, he soon finds out that the building’s residents have no intention of leaving him alone. Laing bites the bullet and becomes neighbourly. But as he struggles to establish his position within the complex social dynamics unfolding around him, Laing’s good manners and sanity disintegrate along with the building.
A Dangerous Method
David Cronenberg explores the physical effects of mental disturbance with the real-life story of Sabine Spielrein (Keira Knightley in a magnetic performance), a troubled Russian woman whose case was at the forefront of the birth of psychoanalysis. Seduced by the challenge of Sabina's case, the driven Dr. Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) takes her on as his patient, using the method of his master, the renowned Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen). But soon, both men fall under Sabina's spell.
Andrea Arnold's raw and gritty take on Emily Brontë's classic novel, about a poor boy of unknown origins rescued from poverty and taken in by the Earnshaw family. There, he develops an intense relationship with his young foster sister, Cathy. Theirs is a passionate tale of elemental love that creates a storm of vengeance.
A Room With A View
Winner of three Academy Awards, this brilliant adaptation of E.M. Forster's novel follows a young Englishwoman Lucy Honeychurch, who after falling for an enigmatic gentleman, George, in Italy, is promptly sent back to England to become engaged with the stiff and very proper Cecil. But when she finds out George has moved close by, Lucy must wrestle with her inner romantic longings and choose between passion and convention.
Mr Turner explores the last quarter century of the great, if eccentric, British painter J.M.W. Turner. Profoundly affected by the death of his father, loved by a housekeeper he takes for granted and exploits, he forms a close relationship with a seaside landlady with whom he eventually lives incognito in Chelsea. Throughout this, he travels, paints, stays with the country aristocracy, visits brothels, is a popular if anarchic member of the Royal Academy of Arts, has himself strapped to the mast of a ship so that he can paint a snowstorm, and is both celebrated and reviled by the public and by royalty.