Monday, January 26, 2015

Winter Sleep - Sunday 1st February 4pm

And so we come to the film that could be either your most or least favourite of the year; Winter Sleep.  The winner of the ‘Palme d’Or’ at Cannes 2014, it is one I have been looking forward to since we booked it.

The story is small – a remote hotel in a tiny village in the middle of the Turkish mountains is cut off by the winter, fuelling the existing disagreements between the locals – but the rest is huge. The issues are all-encompassing, the scenery and the photography are amazing (the village is in the mushroom-like rocks of Cappadocia), the plot is engrossing and the acting superb. Be warned though; the length is BIG too; we start at 4.00pm and we won't be out till around 7.20.

The critics talked it up too. ‘Intimate, spectacular and masterful ...’ – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon.com. ‘An intimate epic, Winter Sleep is right up there with the Turkish director's best’ – James Mottram, Total Film. ‘Winter Sleep demands patience, but if you last the course, you will soon understand why it so enraptured the Cannes jury’ – Geoffrey McNab, Independent.

So, a great way to spend a cold winter afternoon; I can’t wait to see it...or to discuss it afterwards!




Monday, January 19, 2015

Kon Tiki - Sunday 25th January 5pm

For those of us of a certain age, Thor Heyerdahl and the Kon Tiki expedition have a place in the memory as an epic adventure, almost as daunting and dangerous as the moon landings. There was the documentary and those Penguin Books with the orange and white covers and now the film that captures perfectly that spirit of adventure.

This from Digital Spy:
Kon-Tiki is a film that inspires awe and wonder with almost every wave, and despite the characterisation and dialogue taking a back seat, the compelling central performance from Pål Sverre Hagen is one that should lead to wider exposure.
Fittingly, there's a refreshing lack of modernity to the movie itself, which unfolds in a tone and pace more accustomed to 30 or 40 years ago and thus eschews the contemporary trends of quick cuts and 'clever' dialogue. It lends itself to a wide-eyed innocence that fits the subject matter.

And Contact Music agrees:
While this ambitious Norwegian historical adventure sometimes dips into melodrama, it's a riveting, fascinating true story about passion and tenacity. It's also directed with a terrific sense of the open sea by Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg, who have made a recreation of real events that changed the way we understand global migration.
Please note we will be showing the English version of the film.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Charlie's Country - Sunday 18th January 5pm

After two European blockbusters, we go to the other side of the world for this week’s film: ‘Charlie’s Country’ marks the problems of Aborigines in today’s Australia, where ‘The Intervention’ (laws brought in nominally to try to prevent child abuse but which, in action, clamped down still further on Aborigine life) finally drives Charlie back into the bush to live ‘the old way’.

Charlie is played by long-time actor David Gulpilil, who came to our notice 43 years ago in ‘Walkabout’. His portrayal of this old Aborigine won him a Best Actor award and a 7 minute standing ovation at Cannes. Always an intriguing face, the posters have already made me want to see this film, and the reviewers (mainly Australian it has to be said!) agree:-

"The haunting face of David Gulpilil is the overwhelming image that remains after watching Rolf de Heer's film about a man conflicted by living on the edge of two worlds. In many ways, it's an extraordinary film..." – Louise Keller, Urban Cinefile

"I just thought it was excellent. It really rang true for me and I think Gulpilil's performance is just amazing".  – Judith Lucy, At the Movies (Australia).

Monday, January 05, 2015

Leviathan, Sunday 11th January 5pm

Our next film Leviathan comes from master film director Andrey Zvyagintsev, who manages here to combine the grand - Kolya takes on the mob, the state and the church in his fight - with the comic - as things begin to unravel, the victims hit the vodka in a big way - all in a small, everyday story of corrupt politicians.

Winner of the Best Film at the London Film Festival and featuring in many best of the year lists (3 in Sight and Sound and 5 in The Guardian), it's definitely one to see.


Monday, December 29, 2014

Two Days, One Night - Sunday 4th January 5pm

We start the season with the latest from the Dardenne Brothers – ‘Two Days, One Night’. Yet another hit for them at Cannes (though it lost out to ‘Winter Sleep’ for the Palme d’Or - showing Feb 1st), it follows on from ‘The Kid with a Bike’ which went down well in Keswick in 2012. It continues in their normal social-realist genre, this time taking on the world of small industry, trade unionism and solidarity.

Sandra (Marion Cotillard) returns to work after suffering a nervous breakdown. During her absence, her colleagues covered her shifts by working longer hours and the management have proposed €1,000 bonus if they agree to make Sandra redundant. Her fate rests in the hands of her 16 co-workers: she must visit each of them over the course of a weekend to persuade them to reject the bonus. As most of them need the proposed bonus for their own families, Sandra faces an uphill battle to keep her job before the crucial vote on Monday morning...