Monday, September 21, 2020

The County - Sunday 27th September 5pm

Poster for The County

We are off back to Iceland this week, from where we have had some great moments in the last few years – you will remember Rams and Woman at War I hope. The County comes from the same director as Rams - Grímur Hákonarson – but maybe has more of the feel of Woman at War.

Our hero this time is Inga, a dairy farmer fighting to survive in a farm drowning in debt to the local Co-op. When her husband dies, she becomes aware that the Co-op, far from supporting the local farmers, acts more like the Mafia; yes they guarantee buying all her milk but she has to buy everything from them at inflated prices. Risking everything, she writes a whistle-blower review to the Co-op Facebook account. The support she hopes for from the local farmers disappears as they fear the Co-op too much, giving us that feel of Woman at War - she is left to fight on alone.

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Monday, September 14, 2020

Make Up - Sunday 20th September 5pm

Poster for Make Up

Finally considered old enough to be away from home by her parents, 18 year old Ruth has come to this deserted caravan site in Cornwall's winter to get a job and be with her long term boyfriend Tom. So we enter this dark, middle world of youth turning adult; she is between two chapters of her life, as the caravan site is between seasons. Being unsure of herself, she finds a friend in Jade, a fellow worker, who offers her help and a makeover, painting her bitten nails red...but is there more going on here than we see at first?

Monday, September 07, 2020

The Perfect Candidate - Sunday 13th September 5pm

A perfect candidate to start our new season too? We thought so. We last saw director Haifaa Al-Mansour in 2014 with the first Saudi film ever directed by a woman – 'Wadjda' – where she brought us a small girl determined to own a bike (not allowed in Saudi). Six years later, she is back in Saudi with Maryam, a female doctor trying her hardest to be accepted as a doctor (her first patient refuses to let a woman touch him). Her clinic has the only emergency room for miles and is down a dirt road which becomes a quagmire when it rains. Failing to get the local councillor to do anything about it, she decides to stand for office herself. 

"Maryam doesn’t see herself as any kind of feminist pioneer. Her motivations are practical, not symbolic. But the people around her are bull-headed. To them, nothing exists beyond her gender. When she makes an appearance on local TV, the presenter assumes her policies deal only in women’s issues 'like gardens, for instance'" – Clarisse Loughrey, Independent.

Thursday, September 03, 2020

Film Club Reopens

Our new season will start on 13th September and we are very pleased to announce that we have found more films available than we thought, so we now expect to manage something like our normal season of unseen, new films. We are hoping that further films will be released as the months pass, so we do not intend to book up the whole season as we normally do, but will roll forward, booking three or four weeks in advance. 

We have three great films booked for September:

The Perfect CandidateMake UpThe County

The Perfect Candidate (Sun 13th) from the director of 'Wadja' follows Maryam as she tries her hardest to be accepted as a female doctor in Saudi. 

Make Up (Sun 20th) is writer-director Claire Oakley's first feature film, for which she has got all-round good reviews: "She has taken the template of arthouse Brit realism and audaciously spiked it with some genre thrills, as if Ken Loach collaborated with Brian De Palma or Nicolas Roeg" - Peter Bradshaw, Guardian.

The County (Sun 27th) sees Inga, a dairy farmer fighting to survive in a farm drowning in debt to the local co-op. When her husband dies, she becomes aware that the co-op, far from supporting the local farmers, acts more like the Mafia.

You can find more details on all these films here on our new website along with links to book tickets which will be required as part of the Alhambra's safety guidelines.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Coronavirus Update - End Of Season

We'd already decided that we couldn't go ahead with our final two films of the season before the Alhambra closed. It is a shame to end the season on such a sad note, especially as it has been a successful year for the club. We hope you have enjoyed the films overall and will be raring to go when we start up again.

Meanwhile we are all going to have to plan out a very different Summer to the one we may have thought. Some of you will be in 'lockdown', others will be trying to stay safe whilst having some life outside the home. Please try to help each other as much as you can and take a look at Keswick Community Emergency Recovery Partnership Facebook page for more information on how to help and get help.

Monday, March 09, 2020

A Hidden Life - Sunday 15th March 4:30pm

Poster for A Hidden Life

Terrence Malick is back to his best: "A Hidden Life is a lucid and profoundly defiant portrait of faith in crisis. It's an intimate epic about the immense strength required for resistance, and the courage that it takes for one to hold fast to their virtue during a crisis of faith, and in a world that may never reward them for it. It is, without question, the best thing that Malick has made since 'The Tree of Life'" - David Ehrlich, IndieWire.

Please note the earlier start time of 4:30pm to allow for the longer running time (2hrs 53mins)

Thursday, March 05, 2020

A Review of the Festival

Over four days this past weekend, the Keswick Film Festival showed 28 feature films across three venues - Alhambra, Theatre by the Lake and Rheged. The films were remarkable for their range and many were pre-release having their first UK showing here in Keswick.

One of the films that played to a full house was “Parasite”, a South Korean film that has just won the Best Film Oscar – the first not in English. The Festival team had noted the film some time ago and so it was booked long before the Oscars. For those that missed it, you can catch it at the Alhambra next week.

A moving and thought-provoking film from Syria, “For Sama” gave the highest score ever from the audience. It was introduced by the Keswick Peace and Human Rights Group and showed the appalling suffering against a very human story.

The screening of an old Ken Russell film, “Dance of the Seven Veils” was a unique event and made the national news, as it was the first showing since it was banned after just one show fifty years ago. The film was made in Borrowdale and several people who worked as extras were in the audience including one who had travelled 200 miles to see it. The evening was introduced by Lisi Tribble, Ken’s wife, who had a great store of interesting background stories.

A moment of serendipity came with the showing of “No Fathers in Kashmir” when it was discovered that the star of the film, Zara Webb, was in the audience with her extended family, seeing it for the first time. She gamely stepped up and told us about the making of the film – an interesting story given that it is a subversive film made in a war zone.

A special part of the Festival has always been the Osprey Awards. These are given for short films with a Cumbrian connection and again showed the terrific range and creativity among filmmakers, particularly some of the younger ones.

The audience award for the best film of the Festival went to “The Personal History of David Copperfield”. It’s a very funny, lively take on the Dickens classic, so do see it as it’s now on general release.

Roger Gook

Monday, March 02, 2020

The Third Wife - Sunday 8th March 5pm

Poster for The Third Wife

The Third Wife is a very beautiful film about a forbidden topic; a young girl, May, taken as Hung's third wife, after Ha and Xuan, finds herself having to compete to exist.
"What we have here is a small, delicate mini-masterpiece, and bright new talent behind the camera." G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

Monday, February 24, 2020

21st Keswick Film Festival

The Film Festival starts this Thursday with Mike Tweddle’s short film The Curator and Richard Heap's The Runaways, "a ray of British sunshine on film". Both directors will be at the screening to get the festival off to a great start. The rest of the weekend features great films from around the world; the award winning Parasite is just about sold out but you don't want to miss the unique opportunity to see Ken Russell's Dance Of The Seven Veils. Other acclaimed films include Monos, The Nightingale, For Sama, So Long My Son, Midsommar, The Farewell, The Kingmaker, The Souvenir and Portrait Of A Lady On Fire. Don't forget to check out the lesser known films, it's often these ones that really make the festival: Amanda, Aga, Noah Land, The Tobacconist, Tumbbad, Belonging, A Picture Of Yuki, No Fathers In Kashmir. And there are some big stars in films which aren't set for a UK release until later in the year like Hope Gap and Blackbird. Add in the Osprey Short Film Awards and the The Patron's Legacy Project work from Carlisle College students and it should be a weekend to remember.

Monday, February 17, 2020

The Two Popes - Sunday 23rd February 5pm

If I tell you The Two Popes is basically a dialogue between Pope Benedict and (soon to be) Pope Francis you might expect some weighty discussions...but would you expect comedy? If I tell you they are played by Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce, you will expect some great acting. All of this is true here:
"Fernando Meirelles' film deftly pulls off the knotty challenge of dealing lightly with complex dynamics and weighty themes, all delivered by pitch-perfect performances from two veteran British thesps. Funny, engrossing and thoughtful, the result is Meirelles' most entertaining and watchable film since 'City Of God'"  - Ian Freer, Empire.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Bait - Sunday 16th February 5pm

Winner of Outstanding British Film of the Year and Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director, or Producer at this years BAFTAs, Bait "looks set to become one of the defining British films of the year, perhaps the decade" (Mark Kermode).

A local pub, for local people...well, no more. The tourists are taking over this Cornish village and the fishermen are losing out. Do they give in and make money from the tourist trade, or try to soldier on with what little fish they are allowed to catch?
"'Bait' is both an impassioned paean to Cornwall's proud past, and a bracingly tragicomic portrait of its troubled present and possible future. It's a genuine modern masterpiece, which establishes Jenkin as one of the most arresting and intriguing British film-makers of his generation..." - Mark Kermode

Monday, February 03, 2020

Sons Of Denmark - Sunday 9th February 5pm

"Shakespeare famously proclaims in Hamlet: 'There is something rotten in the state of Denmark'. In 'Sons of Denmark' something is indeed very rotten in the Scandinavian country.

This superb Danish movie operates like a police thriller mixed with politics, and it raises many urgent questions. Those who like Scandi-noir will enjoy the twists and turns of the plot, accompanied effectively by the score of Mozart's Requiem" - Michael McClure, DMovies.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Non-Fiction - Sunday 2nd February 5pm

Another French comedy to keep you cheerful, this time with just about everyone having a 'double life'; most are having affairs, one man is writing books about it whilst his lover's husband is publishing them. To add to the mix, some great acting including Juliette Binoche; what more can you want on a winter's evening?!

Monday, January 20, 2020

A Good Woman is Hard to Find - Sunday 26th January 5pm

Hold on to the edge of your seat; this Sunday we are off for this Season's gritty crime drama. Her husband is dead and the police won't believe it was murder; her son has gone totally mute since he died; she is living in poverty in Belfast and her mother looks down on her plight as "the wrong life choices". What more can go wrong for Sarah Collins?

Well, it hasn't even started yet. When a loser drug dealer breaks in to her home and insists on hiding some drugs there, "just for five days", it might not have been too bad, but he has stolen them from a big-time drug lord...who wants them back...

Monday, January 13, 2020

Corpus Christi - Sunday 19th January 5pm

In Corpus Christi we meet Daniel who is drawn to religion whilst in juvenile detention and thinks about joining a seminary. This proves impossible because of his criminal record, whereupon he travels to a small rural town to take up a job in a sawmill once he is paroled.
"An intelligent and provocative film which alternately charms and unsettles, Corpus Christi is Poland's entry for the 2020 Best Foreign Language Oscar. It's a small town drama with much bigger connotations and it thoroughly deserves its place on the world stage" - Jennie Kermode,  Eye for Film

Monday, January 06, 2020

Marriage Story - Sunday 12th January 5pm

As you may have guessed from the title, this is a story about a marriage between Nora (Johannson) and Charlie (Driver), but one that is breaking up; played in flashbacks from an idyllic relationship to where Nora says "it's about to become 'a street fight', in which legality trumps love and 'genius' becomes an 'asset', the spoils of which must be divided equally" - Mark Kermode, Guardian.

Their child is at the centre of the row, especially as Nora has moved to Los Angeles from New York, and their lawyers are making it worse. This is the first of two Netflix films we have been able to get this year, which is a talking point in its own right.

Friday, January 03, 2020

La Belle Époque - Sunday 5th January 5pm

We hope you had a wonderful Christmas; welcome to the 2020s! We get off the blocks with La Belle Époque at 5.00pm this Sunday, 5 January. PLEASE NOTE We are having the Season's drinks before the last film of the season on 29th March, not this Sunday. It would still be good if you could get to the cinema early if you want to pick up your Season Pass - a snip at £40 for all 12 films!

We have always tried to start a new season with something not too heavy, ideally comedic  as well, which often leads us to France: this year is no exception. What better than a French comedy that also stars Daniel Auteuil and Fanny Ardant?