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Cultural Digest: Don't miss these events in Europe this week

One Piece. (L to R) Emily Rudd as Nami, Iñaki Godoy as Monkey D. Luffy, Mackenyu Arata as Roronoa Zoro in season 1 of One Piece.
One Piece. (L to R) Emily Rudd as Nami, Iñaki Godoy as Monkey D. Luffy, Mackenyu Arata as Roronoa Zoro in season 1 of One Piece. Copyright CASEY CRAFFORD/NETFLIX/ 2023 Netflix, Inc.
Copyright CASEY CRAFFORD/NETFLIX/ 2023 Netflix, Inc.
By Jonny Walfisz
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Up this week, there's been big film and TV releases as well as art festivals in London, Munich and Rome.


It’s time for your weekly Cultural digest. Here, we break down all the best things coming out that are worthy of your much sought after attention. We’ve got art shows, films and more to get stuck into over the next week.


While our mighty film critic David Mouriquand is away in Venice covering the film festival, it’s up to us on dry land to cover the films actually hitting screens where you live. Thankfully, for those not living among canals and Campari, the three-quel to legendary actor Denzel Washington’s brilliantly violent series The Equalizer has dropped.

The Equalizer 3 is the third in a series of films directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring Washington as former government hard man Robert McCall. For those unfamiliar with the series, it’s based on the 80s British TV series and the first film which came out in 2014 pre-dated the new trend of an older acting powerhouse getting stuck in for a bit of vigilante justice many credit John Wick with starting.

This time, the action takes place in Italy, where McCall is trying to enjoy his retirement. That’s until the local Mafia start causing trouble and McCall realises it’s left to him to beat the peace into these Mafioso. Put simply, it’s Denzel Washington punching Italian gangsters in between mouthfuls of spaghetti. What more could you want from a lazy Sunday watch?

TV Series

Manga fans rejoice! It seems like Hollywood has managed to adapt a beloved series into a half-way decent TV show for the first time ever.

When Netflix announced it was making ‘One Piece’ into a live-action series, fans of the original held their breath. It’s with good reason. The original manga is one of the longest and best selling Japanese comic series of all time. Started in 1997, fans have been following Monkey D. Luffy and his crew of pirates ever since, with creator Eiichiro Oda promising the final chapters within the next two years.

‘One Piece’ has already been adapted into a well-enjoyed anime show already too. First aired in 1999, the anime has 1,073 episodes spread over 20 series. Put simply, there’s a lot riding on this Netflix adaptation. And Hollywood studios don’t have a great history with adapting manga after disappointing versions of Ghost in the Shell, Death Note, and Dragonball Evolution.

First reviews are in for ‘One Piece’ though and it’s looking good. Initial reviews have praised the production design, the commitment to the original manga’s aesthetic, and the clear passion that the makers have for recreating such a beloved world.

Art festival

It might well be September now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t leave the house at all this weekend. If you’re in London, there’s a fantastic outdoor theatre and performing arts festival taking place.

The Greenwich+Docklands International Festival (GDIF) is running until 10 September, so there’s still plenty of time to check out the great stuff on offer. This weekend in particular, there’s ‘Sliding Slope’, a dance show where performers try desperately to stay atop the roof of a house sinking into a river.

Sliding Slope - artists stranded on a sinking houseVloeistof

North of the city, there’s also Camden Inspire, another arts festival that features street art, street food, music, workshops, poetry and spoken word.

Running over 2-3 September and hosted by local partners Roundhouse, Cafe KOKO, Green Note, Spiritual Bar and Dig It Soundsystem, you can get involved in the fun which even includes a lino printing session with multimedia artist River Manning.

Music Festival

Pop music lovers in Munich will get their fare share of fun with Superbloom Festival this weekend. At the city’s Olympiapark, Superbloom’s line-up this year features some of the best chart talent around.

Valentin Flauraud/' Keystone/Valentin Flauraud
Ava Max performs on the Lab stage during the 57th Montreux Jazz Festival (MJF), in Montreux, Switzerland, July 12, 2023.Valentin Flauraud/' Keystone/Valentin Flauraud

Headliners include Imagine Dragons, Ava Max, Jason Derulo and Ellie Goulding. Rock fans will get their fix from artists like Newcastle hero Sam Fender, while those looking to get down to a good beat have the multi-talented tunes of Martin Garrix to look forward to. Years & Years, RAYE, Peter Fox and Dermot Kennedy also bring some variety.

Natural phenomenon

If you’re in Rome on the 4th of September, you have the opportunity to see something special. At Rome’s Pantheon, a few times a year the light from the sun’s rays enter through the oculus at the top of the domed ceiling to create a perfect arc of light.

The oculus in Rome's PantheonCanva

It’s known as The Arc of Light and is believed to be purposely designed into the Pantheon as a celebration of Jupiter, the Roman deity who was king of the gods.

While you’re in the Italian capital, you may as well also check out the Kaleidoscope Festival. For the first two weeks of September, the gardens of Villa Borghese are still celebrating the three-month long festival with daily free film screenings.

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