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The Arbor review

A docu-drama about the dramatic rise and fall of young playwright Andrea Dunbar

Andrea Dunbar was a precociously gifted playwright who wrote her first play, The Arbor, at 15, and had it produced at the Royal Court Theatre when she was 18. Eleven years and two plays later she had drunk herself to death.

Clio Barnard’s docu-drama focuses not so much on Dunbar as on her daughter Lorraine (Manjinder Virk), whose life has been even more screwed up than her mother’s.

We hear directly from her, and from other family and friends. It’s a powerful story, but muddled by the nagging distraction of having these voices lip-synched by actors.

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Available platformsMovie