Monday, October 29, 2018

Marlina the Murderer In Four Acts - Sunday 4th November 5pm

In case a rare film from Indonesia is not enough to tempt you this week, we also have one of the longest, most intriguing titles I can remember! If 'Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts' is anywhere near as good as its title, it should be a good night out; with the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes average out at 97%, it looks like the critics think it is too.

So what is it about?  If you can picture Sergio Leone directing a feminist western in Indonesia you are on the way to seeing what Mouly Surya has succeeded in doing here: after being told she is going to be robbed and raped in half an hour, Marlina prepares for the ‘Robbery’, then goes on her ‘Journey’ for revenge; you will have to come and see the movie to find out what the other two acts are...

Monday, October 22, 2018

Summer 1993 - Sunday 28th October 5pm

This Sunday we travel to the Catalan countryside in Summer 1993. 6 year-old Frida is taken to live with her aunt and uncle after her parents have died. She befriends their 3 year-old daughter, but
the summer is not as idyllic as it might seem…This is Carla Simón’s first feature film; she and the film have garnered many nominations and awards, including the Berlin Film Festival, where the film won her the Best First Feature Award. 

Monday, October 15, 2018

Cold War - Sunday 21st October 5pm

If you loved Pawel Pawlikowski’s Oscar and BAFTA-winning last film ‘Ida’ as much as we did you won’t be at all surprised that we have included his new ‘Cold War’ in this season. This, too, is winning awards: at Cannes Film Festival, Pawel Pawlikowski  won the Best Director award and the film was nominated for the Palme d’Or.

The film shows the meeting between Wiktor, a travelling musician and Zula, who comes to an audition for his folk group. It then follows the two folk musicians around Cold War Europe, weaving their love and the politics of the time into "a crisply controlled saga of romantic torture, glamour, forbidden border crossings and more betrayals than you can shake a black silk stocking at"  - Stephanie Zacharek, Time.

"Wiktor and Zula have a complicated relationship over the years, which is held together by the music: ‘The music does the feeling for them  - and the music, like their relationship, changes. We have folk chorals that speak of lost loves, sweetly wounded jazz twinkling in French cafés, and the furious, overpowering charge of rock ’n’ roll" - Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice.

Which only leaves me wondering, is the ‘Cold War’ of the title about the political times of the countries they travel though; or is it more about the relationship between the two lovers..? You will have to come along and see for yourself; it won't be a wasted evening I'm sure - this could be my film of the season.


Monday, October 08, 2018

First Reformed - Sunday 14th October 5pm

Thanks to one of our members who suggested we showed First Reformed this Autumn.
"It's been a long journey for Paul Schrader, the screenwriter who gave us American classics such as 'Taxi Driver', 'Raging Bull' and 'American Gigolo'.  Now comes 'First Reformed', which Schrader wrote and directed, and it shows a raging fire still burns deep within the 71year-old. 'First Reformed' is a passionate, unnerving and almost unbearably tense drama about faith, conviction and the rotting core of life on our planet. It's the Schrader many hoped was still alive and kicking but doubted we would ever see again. What a comeback" - Adam Graham, Detroit News. 
If you're planning on coming, join the Facebook Event and share it with your friends.

Monday, October 01, 2018

Custody - Sunday 7th October 5pm

The Alhambra is the place to be at 5pm on Sunday. We are going back to France again, but this time for a very different film - Xavier Legrand's Custody. If thrillers get to you as much as they do to me, then this is for you!

It feels as though saying anything about the plot will give too much away; let’s just say we are watching a custody battle between a soon-to-be-ex-married couple. This has been done many times before, from 'Kramer v Kramer' to 'A Separation' but, as Odie Henderson says in -

"Watching 'Custody' I was reminded of one of Roger's tenets: "It’s not what a movie is about, it's how it is about it." Writer/director Xavier Legrand's feature length debut is about a bitter custody battle, but he has chosen to execute his plot as a quiet, brutally relentless psychological thriller. Custody filters the majority of its terror through Julien Besson (Thomas Gloria), the 10-year-old boy at the centre of his parents' vicious legal struggle. This device never feels exploitative, because as any child of divorce will tell you, the dissolution of one’s parental unit is traumatic even when the split is amicable. And this is not an amicable split".

I can also tell you that the film starts in court, where Antoine Besson is arguing for joint custody of Julien whilst his soon-to-be-ex-wife is arguing against. Is Antoine the innocent husband whose wife has set his kids against him, or is he the violent person she claims..?

The acting of all the cast gets great reviews, especially Thomas Gloria - "he has a very expressive face that often fills the screen in silence while his body telegraphs the sad resignation of one who feels helpless" - Odie Henderson again - whilst Xavier Legrand's direction won him the Silver Lion at Venice: he "seems precociously adept at turning the screws of suspense" - Anthony Lane, New

I can't wait!