Monday, December 16, 2013

Wadjda - Sunday 22nd December 4:50pm

Our closing film for the season promises to be a real gem. Described as ‘the first Saudi teen rebel girl’s bike movie’ Wadjda has won universal acclaim from the critics. It is the first feature film to be shot entirely in Saudi Arabia and is all the more remarkable for having been made by a female Director, Haifaa Al-Mansour.
It has all the right ingredients, a sassy young lead who kicks out against the constraints of her society (and who is not afraid of using her opponents’ underhand tactics when it suits her) in her attempts to get a bike. A scenario that is just so wrong in so many ways in contemporary Saudi Arabia.

Its a gentle comedy that has a wider message about the role of women in Saudi society.

Worthy in its own story right, this hundred-twelve minutes is also notable for the non-strident style with which Al Mansour -- cinematically schooled in Cairo and Sydney -- comments on the restrictions on and frustrations of even middle class women in a country in which cinemas are forbidden. Free from ranting or raving, this quiet celebration of joy of the spirit is one first step towards righting centuries of repressive wrong.Reel Talk Movie Reviews

Monday, December 09, 2013

The Great Beauty - Sunday 15th December 5pm

We picked this week's film as a potential 'best film of the season' when we set up the programme, so I hope you can all get along to see 'The Great Beauty' on Sunday. Peter Bradshaw in the Guardian compared it in style to Fellini's 'La Dolce Vita' and Antonioni's 'La Notte' and said it is 'a gorgeous movie, the film equivalent of a magnificent banquet composed of 78 sweet courses'.

Starting on Jep Gambardella's totally over the top 65th birthday celebrations, we follow Jep around Rome as he reviews his playboy life. Realising how decadent he has become, he sees how beautiful Rome is - as do we, through the eye of master cinematographer Luca Bigazzi.

The film has won 7 awards around Europe and director Paolo Sorrentino gained his fifth nomination for the Cannes Palme D'Or. An all round 'Great Beauty' by the sounds of it.

Monday, December 02, 2013

I Am Nasrine - Sunday 8th December 5:00 PM

From a well-established Iranian Director in Abbas Kiarostami last Sunday, we move this week, to the debut of the Iranian-exile, Tina Gharavi, with I Am Nasrine.

On limited release, the film has received some interesting reviews. The List stated:
 "The low-budget I am Nasrine is not without flaws....... yet Gharavi should be commended for her clandestine filming in the Iranian capital - she herself had to smuggle out the subsequent footage - and the film, thanks partly to Micsha Sadeghi's engaging performance (in the title role), captures Nasrine's sense of excitement at creating a new life in spite of so many obstacles. Alongside the forbidding tower blocks and cramped interiors, Gharavi finds an element of poetry in the wide-open spaces of the North East countryside through which Nasrine passes in her journey of self-discovery."

All neatly summed up by View London:
"With its recognisable soundtrack, impressive script and a strong performance from Micsha Sadeghi, I Am Nasrine makes for an interesting and engaging film that's worth a watch."

 The film runs for some 93 minutes.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Like Someone In Love - Sunday 1st December 5pm

We keep with highly acclaimed films for this Sunday; 'Like Someone in Love' was also nominated for the Cannes Palme D'Or. The director, Abas Kiarostami spent much of his life in his home country of Iran where he learnt to be subtle to beat the censors ('Taste of Cherry' being his most famous film). Since then he has made films in France (we had 'Certified Copy' at the club in 2011) and now Japan. He likes to get inside his characters to bring out their feelings; in this case we have the story of a young, poor female student who has been forced to become a call girl to pay her way. She goes to meet a new client, but is surprised to find he is both old and more interested in love than sex. Her relationship with him, and her boyfriend is the central theme of the story. Kiarostami is recognized as a world master of cinema, but his subtle methods do cause some debate. For instance, Peter Bradshaw in the Guardian says 'The way this film ends is perfect', whilst Andrew Shenker in Little White Lies thinks it '...really is baffling...', even though, overall, he goes on to say it is 'A major statement from one of the world's greatest living filmmakers'. So, as always in Keswick, we can expect some disagreement after the film!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Beyond the Hills - Sunday 24th November 5pm

After introducing ourselves to two, new British Directors on Sunday, we look forward to renewing acquaintance with a long-established Romanian Director, Christian Mungiu, this week.

Beyond the Hills is set to be as powerful as "4 months, 3 weeks and 2days" which we screened at Keswick after its release in 2007. According to "The film has all the hallmarks of the Romanian New Wave: scrupulous realism, long camera movements, a lack of soundtrack music, and drama that slowly builds to an unbearable pitch. It's a deceptively impersonal style, because "Beyond the Hills" seethes with astonishment and rage at a broken society marooned between the 21st century and the 16th."

The film was also a candidate at Cannes, where Peter Bradshaw wrote "Beyond the Hills is an agonising, mysterious movie — it is the first event at this year's festival which has come close to providing any controversy: there were whistles and jeers at the final blackout. But I found it enthralling, mysterious and intimately upsetting – a terrible demonstration of how poverty creates a space which irrational fear must fill."

The Film has a running time of 150 minutes and should therefore finish about 7.40pm.

Monday, November 11, 2013

UK Directors Day - Sunday 17th November

We have a mid-season special for you this Sunday; two films by two new UK Directors plus BOTH of the directors will be with us to answer questions and share a drink with us between films...and all for the price of ONE FILM!

At 2.00pm, we start with 'Damaged Goods', a 'British social realist' film, in the mould of 'Kes'. In this case director Mike Tweddle brings us the story of of a boy and girl finding a dog which has been involved in the dog fighting 'sport' world. The film is 12A, so dont expect gruesome dog fighting; it is more of a drama about what happens to the three of them once they are together - 'we have made a family drama that portrays a dark subject with both compassion and empathy', say Mike Tweddle, who will be available around 3.30 to answer questions, before we break for a glass of wine.

Director Stephen Brown should also be arriving around that time. He will introduce his film - 'The Sea' at 5.00pm. 'The Sea' is based on John Banville's acclaimed book of the same name, and was adapted for the screen by the author himself. It follows a man (Ciaran Hinds) back to the sea where he spent his youth as he tries to get over the loss of his wife. Also starring Charlotte Rampling, SInead Cussack and Rufus Sewell, this will be complementary to 'Damaged Goods', which has a cast of new up-and-coming actors, giving us two very different films to enjoy. To round off what should be a good afternoon, Stephen Brown will be around to answer questions about 6.30.

Monday, November 04, 2013

The Gatekeepers - Sunday 10th November 5pm

If last week's film 'Baraka' was a 'guided meditation' on the world, this week's film 'The Gatekeepers' is a very down to earth guide to Middle East terrorism - or at least Israel's view of it. Director Dror Moreh has managed to pull off an amazing coup in getting the 6 surviving heads of Shin Bet (Israel's MI5...with a lot more teeth) to stand before a camera. They talk about their policies in fighting Palestinian terrorism, often resulting in terrorism of their own; these men had carte blanche to do virtually anything to keep Israel safe, with little or no responsibility to even their own government. We see them admit that this often meant ordering the death of terrorists rather than attempting any peaceful negotiation first.

Mixing all this together with interviews and news broadcasts from the time, Moreh manages to produce a history of terrorism in Israel over the last 45 years. How he got permission from Israel (and the USA) for this is incredible. The resulting film was runner up for the 'Best Documentary' at the last Oscars, so he certainly pulled something out of the bag.

In case you think this might all be a bit dry, Peter Travers in Rolling Stone says it 'cuts deeper than any thriller. It's a powerhouse'. Will we believe that these men are telling us the truth? Ah, there's the rub! Come along and make your own mind up...

Monday, October 28, 2013

Baraka - Sunday 27th October 5pm at Rheged

Those who saw 'Samsara' last year at Rheged will need no introduction to this week's film. This was so popular we weren't sure what to follow it with; 'Baraka' was director Ron Fricke's first 'wordless documentary'. It is a similar attempt to explore our relationship with the world around us, showing the visual beauty that exists in 24 countries whilst pointing out our abilities to destroy them. Filmed with time-lapse photography, using 70mm film, the result is a stunning tour-de-force round the world, a 'guided meditation' which leaves audiences in awe; as Mike McCahill said in the Guardian - 'The only reaction permitted is gawping'. Based on the 'Rotten Tomatoes' audience score of 95%, this is going to be a contender for our best film of the season.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Selam - Sunday 27th October 5pm

In Anatolia 25 years ago, twelve idealist teachers left their home country to take their teaching skills to countries with poor education. This Sunday's film tells the story of three of these people, Harun, Zehra and Adem. Harun goes to Senegal and Zehra to war-torn Afghanistan, whilst Adem finds himself in Boznia Herzegovnia, leaving his pregnant wife behind in Turkey.

Monday, October 14, 2013

In The Fog - Sunday 20th October 5pm

This week's film promises to be a thing of beauty, whilst giving us plenty to think about too.  "In the Fog" is "one of the best Russian films to open in Britain over the past decade" , says Philip French in the Guardian. The story is a moral maze set in occupied Belarus in 1942, where anyone might turn out to be a friend or an enemy. Is our hero Sushenya - who  himself can trust no-one in the fog of war - a true partisan, or a traitor to the cause?  Visually, the cinematographer Oleg Mutu gets highly praised for producing beautiful long takes with muted colours through the fog of the Belarussian forests.  For the Director Sergei Loznitsa, this is his second film to be nominated for the Palme D'Or at Cannes.  A good story, well acted, beautifully photographed with award-winning direction; an evening to look forward to, then.

Monday, October 07, 2013

Sleep Tight - Sunday 13th October 5pm

For those of us still quaking from Luis Tosar's performance in Cell 211 (and only slightly mollified by the gentler side of him in Even the Rain), heart rates are likely to be raised again by his appearance in Sleep Tight. Philip French in the Observer said "Sleep Tight, is a psychological thriller set in a slightly superior but shabby art nouveau apartment house, also in Barcelona, which is at the mercy of an embittered concierge, César Marcos (Luis Tosar), a sad psychopath on the brink of middle age. César has it in for the world and especially the tenants he's supposed to be helping, and the picture is a frightening study of unmotivated malevolence."

Directed by Jaume Balguero, who has previously directed two movies also set within apartment blocks, Total Film sums up Sleep Tight as "Clever suspense cinema with a gleam in its eye and ice in its heart from an emergent Spanish A-lister. Hitchcock himself would be proud, and maybe shocked"

Running time is 105 minutes giving a finish time of around 6.50pm.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Broken - Sunday 6th October 5:00 PM

This season we are having 4 films by new British directors. The first one is from Rufus Norris this week - 'Broken'. Technically Norris has directed before, but only for the theatre - 'London Road'. This film has brought him nominations for 'Best British Newcomer' and 'European Discovery of the Year', so it promises to be good. Add to this the acting of Tim Roth, Rory Kinnear and Cillian Murphy (recently playing Thomas Shelby in 'Peaky Blinders' if you have been watching it) and we should be in for a good night!

The story follows the real actions behind a seemingly ordinary suburb in North London. The innocent world of a young girl (played by newcomer Eloise Lawrence, also to great acclaim) is gradually stripped away by what she witnesses.

A good British Indie drama, by all accounts; 'Broken is a valuable showcase for an outstanding up-and-coming talent, and Laurence is an actor to watch' - Peter Bradshaw, Guardian. Let's hope we enjoy watching it.

Monday, September 23, 2013

White Elephant - Sunday 29th September 5pm

Our second film of the season is another in the increasingly impressive run of films from South America. White Elephant is a film by Argentine Director, Pablo Trapero (Carancho and Lion’s Den), set in a Buenos Aires slum. It stars Ricardo Darin (The Secret in their Eyes) and the Darnelle Brothers favourite, Jeremie Renier (The Kid With A Bike, In Bruges). Add in a Michael Nyman score and this is classic KFC fare.

It has been critically acclaimed:

In this unique and impressive drama Argentinian filmmaker Pablo Trapero invites us into the lives of a team of dedicated Catholic priests, led by Father Julian, who work with and live amongst gang members, drug addicts and outcasts in a huge slum in Buenos Aires. Just as these Fathers have chosen to fully face the reality of one of the world’s dark places rather than opting for an easier life, Trapero and his co-writers dive fully into wrestling with the grey areas and compromised principles that, in this context, become inescapable for these men of faith; it makes for a rich and satisfying character study. 
Paul Gallagher – List film

Produced on a grand scale, this powerhouse of a movie recounts a true story with skill and artistry, highlighting an extremely volatile situation and the brave people who put themselves in the middle of it. And fiery performances make it very moving.......
It's such a tough, messy, thoroughly authentic story that we can't help but be swept up in the escalating crisis. And along the way we are challenged to try to make a difference somewhere ourselves.
 Rich Cline – Shadows on the Wall

Monday, September 16, 2013

Thérèse - Sunday 22nd September 5pm

Our 15th year starts on Sunday with 'Thérèse', a beautiful French drama set in the 1920s. We started last year with a marriage of convenience between a princess and a king in 'A Royal Affair'; this year we have another marriage of convenience, this time between two large business owners, in 'Thérèse'.

Accepting of her fate to start with, Thérèse gets gradually weighed down by her life with her new husband and is unable to shake off thoughts of what might have been... Claude Miller's final film promises to be a visually beautiful creation, set among the trees in provincial France. On top of this we have an 'utterly mesmerising' performance (Trevor Johnston in the Radio Times) from Audrey Tatou (probably best known to most of us from 'Amelie') to look forward to.

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Autumn Programme

Our new programme of films starts on Sunday 22nd September with the beautiful French period drama, Therese.

To whet your appetite, here is a collection of trailers for the upcoming films:

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Alhambra Centenary

As you may be aware, the Alhambra is celebrating its centenary next year - 100 years of continuous screenings - and we, along with Tom, are planning a celebration of that milestone as part of the Festival next February.

As part of that celebration we are conducting an oral history project to record peoples' memories of the Alhambra over each of its 11 decades of operation. We'd like to know what people saw, who they went with and the impact that had on them, set alongside events in Keswick and the wider world at the time.

Maybe you went with your boy/girlfriend (perhaps you didn't watch the film at all), saw a newsreel of a particular event or a film that triggered a lifelong fascination with film, its star or its genre.

The aim is to turn the results into a short film or failing that, an exhibition to be shown at the Festival. If you have a particular memory of the Alhambra, we'd really appreciate you recording it on this document (doc or pdf) and sending it back to the e-mail address on the form.

We are being assisted in this process by Helen Hutchinson and Heather Tipler and we are fortunate to have and and grateful for, financial support from the Lake District Communities Fund and Keswick Town Council. Many thanks - further details of the centenary celebrations will emerge over the months ahead.

Monday, June 03, 2013

Summer Special Film Club: The Escape Sunday 9th June 6pm

Next Sunday, 9 June at 6.00pm, there will be a 'summer special film club' showing of the Danish Film 'The Escape'.  For those of you who have enjoyed the recent array of great Danish films at the cinema and on TV ('A Royal Affair', 'The Hunt', 'The Killing', etc), this should be a treat, especially as it will only cost you £2! Our thanks go to the Danish Film Institute who are offering several of their films for free... if this goes well, we might bring you another!

Saturday, April 06, 2013

AGM and Let The Bullets Fly - Sunday 4pm

Sunday will be your last chance to huddle together out of the biting wind for the collective warmth of the Keswick Film Club.

The afternoon starts with the AGM at 4.00pm, followed by (appropriately for such a politically charged outfit like KFC)  Let the Bullets Fly, a chinese, period gangster movie that is breaking box office records out east. Not the usual film club fare but it promises humour and violence in equal measure. It stars  Yun Fat Chow, who has an impressive resume and is directed by Wen Jiang, again a respected figure within the genre.

According to Village Voice:
" Decked out in designer suits and constantly bellowing with evil laughter, Chow makes for a regal baddie, and Jiang's agile direction ably keeps pace with the cat-and-mouse story's vigorous rat-a-tat dialogue. With Zhang driven by a desire to even the economic playing field, the film operates as an unsubtle but boisterous Robin Hood–style fable of socialist values."

Sunday, March 31, 2013

AGM 2013 - Sunday 7th April 4pm

The Keswick Film Club Annual General Meeting will take place on Sunday 7th April at 4pm in The Alhambra before the 5pm screening of Let The Bullets Fly.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Cloud Atlas - Sunday 31st March 5pm

Only two films left this season, I'm sorry to say, but we are going out with a bang. This Sunday we have 'Cloud Atlas', based on the book of the same name by David Mitchell but I am told it is EVEN better than the book. The film covers three centuries, linking the lives of characters together by shared story lines and having the same actors playing different parts over the centuries. We have a big plot, big actors (Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Hugo Weaving ...) Not surprisingly we also have a big budget for once - $100m+ The result is more than a blockbuster though; to quote Roger Ebert , himself borrowing from Churchill's description of Russia, '"it is a riddle, wrapped up in a mystery, inside an enigma"...But, oh, what  a film this is! And what a demonstration of the magical, dreamlike qualities of the cinema'. Possibly a season highlight? Come along and find out for yourself. As the film is nearly 3 hours long, we will be starting the intro at 4.55, with the film starting at 5.00.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Safety Not Guaranteed - Sunday 24th March 5pm

Safety Not Guaranteed looks like being highlight of the season - its hard to find a bad review. This from Digital Spy:
A low-concept film about time travel mightn't sound like much of a trip, but first-time director Colin Trevorrow offers good-natured fun and real substance in place of shiny surfaces and whizz-bang effects. He casts fellow indie filmmaker Mark Duplass as Kenneth, a possibly insane supermarket clerk who places an ad for a time travel companion, claiming to have the power at his fingertips. 
Aubrey Plaza gets the closest to him as Darius, a moody intellectual who most men would find intimidating, but Kenneth is too crazy to care and he's heavily armed, too. More importantly, he feels a kindred spirit in Darius after they share their personal reasons for wanting to turn back the clock. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Hunt - Today at 5pm

Mads Mikkelsen  (of 'a Royal Affair') plays a loner who takes on teaching the kindergarten in a small village school. All is going well until a small child makes an accusation which changes his life and the life of the community. Directed by Thomas Vinterberg, all the reviewers agree this is his best film since 'Festen' started his career in the 90s. The tense drama-thriller includes many gripping scenes, including one which Peter Bradshaw claims 'can only be watched through your fingers'. A must-see Keswick film; hopefully see you there!

Thursday, March 07, 2013

No - Sunday 10th March 5pm

Our film on Sunday is No, the final film in Pablo Larrain's  Pinochet-era Chilean trilogy. It stars Gael Garcia Bernal, who is a familiar face (Even the Rain, Babel, Amores Perros, Motorcycle Diaries) and certainly enthused the audience at Cannes (don't worry, its the Cannes jury we have a problem with, not the audience) as reported by the Guardian:
Once in a while, a film comes along at Cannes that gets the blood pumping – a work that seems destined to break out of the arthouse ghetto, that feels, above all, like a fresh vision and voice. This year, that moment has come with No, a ­Chilean film tucked away in the Directors' Fortnight sidebar of the festival, its unpromising-sounding subject being Chile's 1988 referendum. Its premiere was greeted with whoops, cheers and seemingly unstoppable applause. 
What Gael's character does is key to understanding present-day Chile, says Larraín. "Pinochet imposed a capitalist society in Chile: our character grabbed the tools of capitalism that Pinochet had provided – advertising – to pull him out." For all the film's humour and joy, there is an ambivalence at the story's heart: a hardnosed cynicism in the admen's tactic of selling the idea of l'alegría, happiness, to the populace, just as if it were a soft drink called Free.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Bullhead - Sunday 3rd March 5pm

With the sun making Keswick the warmest place in England, I am not sure I should talk about us getting back to 'normal service' on Sunday after the excitement of the Festival weekend, but I will. We are showing another Oscar nominated film - 'Bullhead' - this time from Belgium. The plot of this film is a thriller about the illegal use of hormones in the cattle industry, but it is the underlying story of Jacky Vanmarsenille - the bull head of the title - that makes this a 'must see' movie. Played by Matthais Schoenaerts, we see a man tortured by his attempts to be macho and by events from the past that gradually show why he is this way. Schoenaerts' performance here won him the part in 'Rust and Bone', shown at the Alhambra earlier this year. Even the Daily Express are forced to say 'It looks fantastic, boasts an unusual storyline and Schoenaerts is as compelling as a young Marlon Brando'. I hope you enjoy too.

Monday, February 18, 2013

14th Keswick Film Festival: Thursday 21st - Sunday 24th

Hopefully you are all ready for the 14th Keswick Film Festival which kicks off with Thursday's party from 6:30pm at the Theatre followed by Michael Winterbottom's Everyday at 7:30pm.

If you're still having trouble deciding what to see we've put together this collection of trailers for most of the films showing at the Festival:


Friday, February 15, 2013

Tabu - Sunday 17th February 5pm

We have a much more Keswick-friendly film for you this weekend - TABU, the latest film from Miguel Gomes. Starting out slowly in in Lisbon, it builds the story of Aurora, an old woman who finds out she is dying. Unlike Amour , however, we do not stay inside her flat to see this. Instead she sends her neighbour Pilar in search of a man called Ventura. When Pilar finds him the film takes a different turn as he takes us back to Africa when Aurora was a young woman. Beautifully photographed, complete with some early 60s pop songs and a look at the colonial politics of that time, the result has left most reviewers ecstatic, with Andrew O'Hehir (Salon) claiming 'what you’ll see is not just the last movie released in 2012, but possibly the most original of them all'.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

The Saragossa Manuscript - Sunday 10th February 5pm

After Holy Motors one hesitates to use the S* word but that does crop up in reviews. Nonetheless The Saragossa Manuscript is a fascinating piece of film-making. There is a website devoted to it and the author of the website has produced an outline of the film which he urges viewers to either read before viewing or immediately afterwards. He claims it doesn't serve as a plot spoiler but helps to provide some context to the stories within stories within the film.  I'll leave it up to you whether you wish to take his advice

Please note we only have a 3 hour gap between Alhambra screenings and the film is 3 hour and 2 minutes long! So we will be starting the introduction at 4.55pm and rolling the opening credits bang on 5.00pm. 

Friday, February 01, 2013

Amour - Sunday 3rd February 5pm

This weekend we have a real treat, probably the most anticipated film of the year for many people - 'Amour'. Several people who have already seen it have said it is their favourite film of 2012, David Calhoun of Time Out said '... a devastating, highly intelligent and astonishingly performed work. It's a masterpiece'.

The film follows the lives of an old couple after one of them has a stroke. It is the latest from director Michael Haneke (who brought us 'Hidden' and 'White Ribbon'), and has already won him the Palme D'Or at Cannes 2012. The film is nominated for both Best Film and Best Foreign Language film at the Oscars this year, as is Haneke for Best Director and  Emmanuelle Riva for Best Actress. On top of that we get to see Jean-Louis Trintignant AND Isobelle Huppert...AND it is in French! Definitely a must see for the Keswick Film Club, I think you will agree.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Elena - Sunday 27th January 5pm

Holy Motors split our audience last Sunday with nearly as many 5 star votes as 1 star ones. Perhaps there will be less scope for disagreement with Elena on Sunday. Described by Philip French as "a sharp, bitterly comic story of crystalline clarity about the moral and spiritual corruption of present-day Russia" it promises a number of strong performances.  Philip French again: "It's a gripping, resonant tale, and Nadezhda Markina is outstanding as Elena, and far more sympathetic than perhaps she should be"

Friday, January 18, 2013

Holy Motors - Sunday 20th January 5pm

This Sunday's film is definitely a  highlight of the season; whether you will love it or hate remains to be seen!

Holy Motors  has had much written about it, in many places and is hard to describe... a car trip around Paris taking the occupant from one strange encounter to the next, where the occupant changes his persona at each stop; is he just an actor going from one job to the next? Is it a dream? Or maybe an homage to film making? The director, Leos Carax has always been an enigma, bringing us 'Les amants du Pont-neuf'  and 'Pola X'  amongst others, but this film has the most critical acclaim of all; here are just a few of the critics reviews -

'Holy Motors, fuelled by pure feeling, is a dream of a movie you want to get lost in. '
'It's the coolest and strangest movie of the year, and once it gets its druglike hooks in your brain, you'll never get them out again.' 

'Despite the millions of dollars fuelling 2012's special-effects extravaganzas, I doubt I'll experience anything as exhilarating or memorable this year. '

'Holy Motors is some kind of wonderful. '

'For all its disruptive energy, Holy Motors is also a thing of sublime beauty. '

Why not come long for the ride!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

When Pigs Have Wings - Sunday 13th January 5pm

A change of continent (and style) for Sunday as we move back east to Malta, masquerading as Gaza, for When Pigs Have Wings, directed by Sylvain Estibal. There are very few reviews for the film on the web but the Hollywood Reporter summarised When Pigs Have Wings as follows:
Estibal skewers both sides in the Arab-Israeli conflict impartially, with a keen eye for absurdities and class disparities. As a former reporter from the region currently based in Uruguay, he brings an outsider's eye to the Middle East conflict. If the why-can't-we-all-just-get-along message is simplistic, the film, shot in Malta, and occasionally rough-hewn, has its heart in the right place and is worth 90 minutes of anyone's time.

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Margaret - Sunday 6th January 5pm

As usual, we start early this Sunday; we'll be there at 4.15 to offer you a glass of wine to celebrate the New Year and to swap your Christmas stories with each other. It will also give you the chance to join the club if you haven't already done so - £7 gets you a pound off all films (INCLUDING the Festival in February!) - and give you the chance to buy a Spring Season Pass if you want one - £28 gets you in to all 13 films until Easter.

Our season starts at 5.00 with 'Margaret', an unusual starter for us in that it is from the USA, and one of those films that has 'got away'. It is a thought provoking film and has an amazing performance from its lead actor - Anna Paquin. Without giving too much away, the film shows Lisa, a spoilt 17 year old, whose thoughtless action at the start has terrible consequences. We follow her trying to come to terms with these consequences, and trying to make up for them. As Peter Bradshaw said in the Guardian 'the resulting movie is stunning: provocative and brilliant, a sprawling neurotic nightmare of urban catastrophe, with something of John Cassavetes and Tom Wolfe, and rocket-fuelled by a superbly thin-skinned performance by Anna Paquin'.

You will have noticed that it is called Margaret not Lisa; you will have to see the film to find out why...