Behind the Candelabra – BBC2

Michael Douglas delivers a tour-de-force, Emmy-winning performance as flamboyant pianist Liberace

Michael Douglas delivers a tour-de-force, Emmy-winning performance as flamboyant pianist Liberace.

Director Steven Soderbergh’s gaudy but insightful biopic focuses on the showman’s secret five-year relationship in the late 1970s-early 1980s with his much younger lover, Scott Thorson (Matt Damon).

Amid the glitz and glamour, there’s a dark side to the couple’s relationship that emerges when Liberace gets Thorson to have surgery so that he will look more like him.

Damon is also ideally cast and Rob Lowe is a scene-stealing hoot as the cosmetic surgeon.