Shirkers was a Singapore-made 1992 cult classic from teenage friends Sandi Tan, Jasmine Ng and Sophie Siddique —or it would have been, had the 16mm footage not been stolen by their enigmatic American collaborator Georges Cardona. More than two decades after Cardona disappeared, Tan, now a novelist in L.A., returns to the country of her youth and to the memories of a man who both enabled and thwarted her dreams. Magically, too, she returns to the film itself, revived in a way she never could have imagined.
Directed, written and produced by Sandi Tan, Shirkers debuted at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival where Tan won the World Cinema Documentary Directing Award. The film was produced by Jessica Levin and Maya Rudolph, co-edited by Lucas Celler and Kimberley Hassett, photographed by Iris Ng, with an original score by Ishai Adar.
FILM EVENTS TO CHECK OUT:
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LOVE THEME FROM FLASHDANCE presents: THE WORK (2017).
THE WORK sees prisoners at Folsom State Prison undergo a four-day group therapy programme. Members of the public can apply to take part and the film charts the experience of those who do. It is an opportunity for all present - not just the inmates - to work through issues of depression, grief, fatherhood and addiction. Deptford Cinema are joined by Richie Brave, Lewisham-born writer & speaker, who will be leading a discussion on the film and its intersections with masculinity in the UK.
THE WORK is the second in a series of events in which all proceeds from the screening and poster sales go to a charity relevant to the film—in this case, SOMERVILLE YOUTH PROVISION. They provide a range of activities for young people in Lewisham. Their aim is to stimulate and challenge young people, steering them away from crime and anti-social behaviour by giving them the opportunity to learn new skills, build friendships, overcome barriers and gain new experiences.
Picturehouse Central| July 7|7pm
Get tickets and information here
On 23 June 2016, the UK voted by 52% to 48% to Leave the European Union. Postcards From The 48% is a documentary made by and featuring those who voted Remain, the 48%, to show the other 27 EU Member States that it was far from a landslide victory, and just why they are fighting to stay part of the EU.
Price: £9 (£7 CONCESSIONS) / £5 OFF PEAK
Bertha DocHouse at Curzon Bloomsbury will start a run this week of the Best Documentary, BFI London Film Festival 2016 winner- Starless Dreams from director Mehrdad Oskouei.
It took seven years for veteran documentarian Mehrdad Oskouei to get permission to make a film in a rehabilitation centre for juvenile delinquent women in Iran. The result is an emotionally charged masterpiece which paints a thoughtful and complex portrait of young women at the extreme margins of Iranian society.
Fed up with being incarcerated, most feel conflicted about leaving the relative safety of their confinement where they have found community, and stepping back out into society and often rough circumstances. But the approach of the New Year celebration day sparks dreams of reunions with what they have left behind and hopes of a brighter future.
Lexi Cinema, 23 November 6.30pm, tickets here.
This is a sweet, quietly funny and intriguing focus on 10 character actors and extras who featured in Star Wars (filmed at Elstree in 1976). No one had any idea then that they’d forever be defined by the one or two days they spent on the set of 'yet another' sci-fi movie. Says one: "We thought we were making a television show." Catch up with Dave Prowse (Darth Vader), stormtrooper Laurie Goode and cantina waitress Pam Rose, all of whom stayed in the business but never surpassed their 5 minutes of fame as bitplayers in the film. Paul Blake says with good humor, “I have played Macbeth. I’ve performed with the Royal Court Theatre. But my epitaph will say, ‘Here lies Greedo.’ ” And while riding the wave of Star Wars cultdom, the film also takes a step back to look at the arbitrariness of celebrity and it's place in our star-driven culture.
At this special Lexi Cinema screening, Time Out's resident Star Wars enthusiast and film critic Tom Huddleston hosts Elstree 1976's director, Jon Spiro, the doc's producer, Hank Starrs, and also professional supporting actor, Derek Lyons, who had two roles in Star Wars .
1000 Londoners is a unique digital portrait of London It offers an insight into the diverse lives of 1000 Londoners, taking in all ages, religions, race, income, interests and opinions. It is a multi-year project and the growing archive is available to view here.
Next up in the series is this selection of short docs, all shot on Halloween. Subjects of the documentaries include cemetery dwellers, horror film fanatics, trick or treaters and costume sellers, and the films will be followed by a short Q&A with one of the film makers and their subject.
4 - 18 November
From a floating Colombian village to an all-girls school in Afghanistan, this season sheds light on communities around the world. Highlight include the heartbreaking Nowhere to Call Home, in which a destitute Tibetan widow tries to give her child to an American journalist.
NOWHERE TO CALL HOME
WHAT TOMORROW BRINGS
A REVOLUTION IN FOUR SEASONS
INTO THE INFERNO + Q&A at Bertha DocHouse.
Date: FRI 28 OCTOBER, 2016
Price: £9 (£7 CONCESSIONS)
FRIDAY 28TH OCTOBER
Part of what the Bertha DocHouse are dubbing 'Werner Herzog' week, this new doc from the mercurial German director sees him out with the world’s leading volcanologist, Clive Oppenheimer on a dangerous mission; their journey takes around the world, to the very edges of active volcanoes, meeting the people who willingly live in the shadow of such lethally unpredictable neighbours.
On the journey, Herzog pays tribute to the late French researchers Katia and Maurice Krafft, who were known for filming more closely to lava than anyone else. Their stunning footage of Magma Rivers evokes the hellish landscape of the man-made Kuwaiti oil fires in Herzog's 1992 film Lessons of Darkness.
Into the Inferno artfully blends reportage, history, and philosophy into a riveting cinematic experience. Looking into a volcanic funnel, Herzog observes "a fire that wants to burst forth and it could not care less about what we are doing up here."
DocHouse are showing two Werner Herzog films this week, the other being Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World.
You can read the Smoke Screen review of Lo and Behold here.
Homo Sapiens, directed by documentarian Nikolaus Geyrhalter (Our Daily Bread), is a film about the finiteness and fragility of human existence and the end of the industrial age. Powerful images of empty spaces, ruins, cities increasingly overgrown with vegetation and crumbling asphalt: the areas we currently inhabit, though humanity has disappeared. Now abandoned and decaying, gradually reclaimed by nature after being taken from it so long ago. Homo Sapiens is an ode to humanity as seen from a possible future scenario.
94 minutes. No voice-over, no score, no people. Join Misc. Films - a new programming collective dedicated to putting underseen and unreleased films on the big screen - for the London premiere of this acclaimed festival favourite, which despite screening around the world has yet to receive a UK theatrical release. Consider this one for the architecture enthusiasts, the ‘ruin porn’ addicts, the urban explorers and anyone keen to witness the present-day post-apocalypse.
MY SCIENTOLOGY MOVIE
+ JOHN DOWER Q&A Thursday 20th October, 6.15pm
With a lifetime of experience dealing with eccentric, unpalatable and unexpected human behaviour, the unassuming Theroux won't take no for an answer when his request to enter the Church of Scientology headquarters is turned down. Inspired by the Church's alleged techniques, and aided by former Scientology members-turned-whistleblowers, Theroux uses actors to recreate incidents people claim to have experienced as members in an attempt to better understand the way it operates.
The film screening will be followed by a live Q&A with director John Dower and producer Simon Chinn.
You can read the Smoke Screen review of Theroux and Dower's new film here.
Monday 10 October 7.15pm
Curzon Victoria | Wimbledon | Canterbury | Ripon | Sheffield
Louis Theroux’s first theatrical feature documentary, from the Oscar winning producer of Searching for Sugarman and Man of Wire, sees the renowned filmmaker delve into the world of Scientology, one of the world’s most mysterious and powerful religions, in what he regards as ‘the Holy Grail of Stories’. The film has been garnering buzz as it travels round the festival circuit, and you can read the Smoke Screen review here.
See here for details of Curzon Cinema's screening of the film plus Q&A via satellite: Following this preview screening a live Q&A Louis Theroux will be broadcast via satellite from the Royal Festival Hall.
Mon 3 October starts 8.30pm, doors open 7.00pm at Whirled Cinema.
BUY TICKETS HERE: £6 for non members. (Entry is free to members and a guest)
Acclaimed documentarian Alex Gibney's Finding Fela! tells the story of Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s life, his music, his social and political importance.
He created a new musical movement, Afrobeat, using that forum to express his revolutionary political opinions against the dictatorial Nigerian government of the 1970s and 1980s.
The power and potency of Fela’s message is completely current today and is expressed in the political movements of oppressed people, embracing Fela’s music and message in their struggle for freedom.
1000 Londoners is a five-year digital project which aims to create a digital portrait of a city through 1000 of the people who identify themselves with it. They run regular screenings of their short films around the capital. Their newest short film selection screens at the Lexi on 14 September.
Looking After London presents 10 Londoners who are involved with 'caring', ranging from befriending the elderly, working with homeless refugees, or protecting London's challenged wildlife. This collection of short documentary films explores the diverse motivations for getting involved as well as the ways in which people engage with vulnerability in their community. Pictured right is Elder Befriender Corinne, with Agatha. Both women come from Africa, and their friendship helps keep alive precious memories.
This event includes a collection of documentaries, restored archive footage and a live Q&A with the filmmakers and some of their subjects.
Leading up to the 2016 presidential elections, Frontline Club's U.S. Under the Lens film series presents a range of documentaries tackling some of the most polarising and hotly-debated issues that the Trump vs Clinton battle is bringing to the foreground, from gun rights to abortion.
The series also includes The Choice, the newest in Michael Kirk’s U.S. elections series – considered a pinnacle of political broadcast journalism since 1988. Q&As and panel discussions will follow each screening.
Schedule (click for more information and booking):
Sat 20th August, Bertha DocHouse
On Sat 20th August DocHouse hosts an exclusive Q&A with Director David Farrier, who's documentary - Tickled - has been getting a lot of buzz across the pond. Could we be looking at the next CATFISH?
Journalist David Farrier stumbles upon a mysterious tickling competition online. As he delves deeper he comes up against fierce resistance, but that doesn’t stop him getting to the bottom of a story stranger than fiction.
Farrier travels to the Los Angeles and uncovers a vast empire, known for harassing and harming the lives of those who protest their involvement. The more he investigates, the weirder it gets, revealing secret identities and criminal activity.
With humour and determination, Farrier and co-director Dylan Reeve summon up every resource available to get to the bottom of this tickling wormhole.
6 FILMS IN 3 DAYS AT BERTHA DOCHOUSE at Curzon Bloomsbury.
DOC/FEST PICKS is a new collaboration with Sheffield Doc/Fest to bring you six of the best films from this year's festival for an exclusive weekend in July.
The full programme can be found below.
THE CONFESSION + Q&A with Moazzam Begg and Dir. Ashish Ghadiali
Dir. Ashish Ghadiali
Fri 22 July | 19:30
Moazzam Begg has witnessed a generation of conflict. Here he tells his extraordinary story, chronicling the rise of modern jihad, its descent into terror, and the disastrous reaction of the West.
Dir. Samira Goetschel
Sat 23 July | 16:10
Welcome to ‘City 40’, where the residents have one of the highest standards of living in Russia – before dying prematurely of radiation poisoning. Secret filming takes us inside the city, which was closed to the outside world for decades.
+ Q&A with Kirsten Johnson, via Skype
Dir. Kirsten Johnson
Sat 23 July | 18:00
American cinematographer Kirsten Johnson has traveled the world working with the greatest documentary filmmakers. In this thoroughly engrossing film, she refashions some of her footage into a kaleidoscopic musing on documenting the world.
MY SCIENTOLOGY MOVIE
Dir. John Dower
Sat 23 July | 20:45
Following a long fascination with the religion and with much experience dealing with eccentric human behaviour, Louis Theroux delves into the murky world of Scientology.
Date: THU 14 JULY, 2016
Time: 19:30 Price: £12.50 (£10 CONCESSIONS)
THURSDAY 14TH JULY BOOK
The police killing of Mark Duggan in August 2011 ignited the worst civil unrest in recent British history. In this film, Duggan’s closest friends, Marcus and Kurtis, take us on a tour of their insulated world, which we pass everyday but never really see.
This screening will be followed by a Q&A with Director George Amponsah and Producer Dionne Walker
10 July 2016 / 6.30pm. Tickets here.
Coinciding with the week of the Chilcot Report release, The Brick Lane Debates are screening We Are Many - the story of the millions-strong movement which mobilised against the Iraq War in 2003, and how its impact can still be felt more than a decade on.
The Ramones´ first UK gigs took place at the Roundhouse and Dingwalls in July 1976. Among the audience were members of The Damned, The Sex Pistols, The Clash, Chrissie Hynde and Vic Godard. These electrifying performances would mark a turning point in the fledgling UK punk scene.
To celebrate 40 years since these raucous New Yorkers exploded onto a drab and tedious rock scene, the Rio are delighted to bring The Ramonas to Birthdays for a free after-party- an all female tribute to the iconic Punk Rock band.
Buy a ticket to the film screening and gain free entry to the after-party with your cinema ticket at Birthdays Dalston.
"I'm young, I'm handsome, I'm fast, I'm pretty and can't possibly be beat." - Muhammad Ali
Everyman Cinemas salute the sad passing of the legendary Muhammad Ali this weekend with a screening of his 1974 documentary, When We Were Kings at the Barnet and Screen on the Green venues from 10-12 June. The film details the famous 'Rumble in the Jungle' heavyweight championship bout in Zaire between champion George Foreman and underdog challenger Muhammad Ali.
Tickets and times here.
Michael Moore’s new entertaining travelogue reveals that wholesome American values are alive and well, just not in America. After a preview of his new documentary at Picturehouse Central, the filmmaker will take part in a Q&A hosted by none other than Louis Theroux.
Details of the film:
Oscar winning director Michael Moore is back with Where To Invade Next: a provocative and hilarious comedy in which Moore will stop at nothing to figure out how to actually make America great again. Just in time for election season, America's favorite political provocateur, Michael Moore, is back with his new film, Where To Invade Next. Honored by festivals and critics groups alike, Where To Invade Next is an expansive, hilarious, and subversive comedy in which the Oscar winning director confronts the most pressing issues facing America today and finds solutions in the most unlikely places. The creator of Fahrenheit 9/11 and Bowling For Columbine has returned with an epic movie that’s unlike anything he has done before—an eye-opening call to arms to capture the American Dream and restore it in, of all places, America.
Tuesday 7 June 6.15pm, Curzon Bloomsbury.
A chance to see the winner of the Golden Bear for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival from this year, Gianfranco Rosi’s portrait of the Mediterranean island of Lampedusa - and the humanitarian crisis occurring in the seas around it.
Curzon Artificial Eye will donate their share of the box office to Refugee Action
Director (and obvious fan) Louise Osmond (Dark Horse) enjoyed unprecedented access to the making of legendary auteur and political firebrand Ken Loach’s new and final film, I, Daniel Blake. From this has sprung a wider film biography of perhaps Britain’s best-known socially concsious writer-director who has worked across theatre, cinema and television with documentaries and much-lauded dramas such as Kes, The Wind That Shakes The Barley, The Angels’ Share, and 1966’s groundbreaking Cathy Come Home.
To celebrate the release of Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach, cinema-goers are invited to pay-what-they-can for matinee screenings of the film on Sunday 5 June at Picturehouses across London. Tickets will be available on a first-come-first-served basis from the box office on the day of the screening.
This initiative is supported by Dogwoof with the backing of the BFI Distribution Fund. See here for participating cinemas.
Lexi Cinema.May 19, 845pm.
Inspired by the critically-acclaimed, best-selling book “The Spirit Level” by Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett, THE DIVIDE tells the story of 7 individuals striving for a better life in contemporary US and UK, where the top 0.1% owns as much wealth as the bottom 90%. The shocking suggestion is that virtually every aspect of our lives is controlled by one factor: the size of the gap between rich and poor.
Director Katharine Round will be in attendance after the screening to discuss some of the ideas in the film.
The Rio hosts a screening as part of Punk.London season, a year-long season to celebrate punk heritage and influence with gigs, films, talks and exhibits.
D.O.A: A RIGHT OF PASSAGE, a cult classic which hasn't screened in the UK since the 90s, looks at the origin of punk rock, with interviews (including the famous interview of Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen in bed) and concert footage from the Sex Pistols, The Dead Boys, Generation X (with Billy Idol), The Rich Kids, the X-Ray Spex, and Sham 69, with additional music from The Clash, Iggy Pop, and Augustus Pablo. Focussing on the Sex Pistols' 1978 tour of the United States, director Lech Kowalski follows them with handheld cameras through clubs and bars and combines this with footage of contemporary bands, trends in the fashion capitals, and punks of all shapes and colours. It's a grainy, stained snapshot of a movement at its peak, that also shows how the movement was seen as a threat by certain authority figures...
+ Q&A featuring screenwriter and assistant director Chris Salewicz.
Screening as part of Punk.London
Documentary group 1000 Londoners continue their mission to document the rhythms of London life via short documentary films, showcasing various strands in venues around the capital.
This May, the focus of their next film night showcase is on those Londoners who have an elevated view of things; whether they work in the City's tallest buildings, live in lavish penthouses, or use the rooftops as their playground.
ZIGGY STARDUST AND THE SPIDERS FROM MARS has all the elements of a great rock 'n' roll film: a charismatic star at his artistic peak, a concert that marked the end of an era, and the legendary D.A. Pennebaker, director of DON'T LOOK BACK, arguably the finest music documentary ever made. Here he focuses on on the legendary 1973 concert, with Bowie performing under the moniker Ziggy Stardust with his glam-rock backing band, the Spiders From Mars. The compelling backstage and on-stage footage is topped by Bowie taking the moment to shock fans by announcing his intention to drop the Stardust persona. The concert and film serve as a requiem for the glam-rock movement Bowie so vividly embodied-and, with a few simple words, killed in its infancy.
The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the producer of the V&A Bowie exhibition.
See Barbican Film site for tickets and full details.
Green Film Festival
Sun 1 - Sat 7 May Cinema 3
The UK Green Film Festival brings a stunning programme of titles from around the world, exploring issues ranging from the rights of local communities to global concerns such as climate change, energy and pollution.
Opening Gala: Racing Extinction
Sun 1 May 3pm Cinema 3
(USA /China/Hong Kong /Indonesia/Mexico/UK 2015 Dir Louie Psihoyos 90 min)
Oscar®-winning director Louie Psihoyos (The Cove) assembles a team of artists and activists on an undercover operation to expose the hidden world of endangered species and the race to protect them. Spanning the globe to infiltrate the world’s most dangerous black markets, Racing Extinction reveals never-before seen images that truly change the way we see the world.
The Great Invisible
Tue 3 May 6.30pm Cinema 3
(US 2014 Dir Margaret Brown 92 min)
On April 20, 2010, communities throughout the Gulf Coast of the United States were devastated by the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon, a state-of-the-art, offshore oil-drilling rig operated by BP in the Gulf of Mexico. In this thought-provoking new documentary, Peabody Award-winning documentarian Margaret Brown travels to small towns and major cities in Alabama, Louisiana and Texas to explore the fallout of the disaster on the people of the region.
The Shore Break
Wed 4 May 6.30pm Cinema 3
(South Africa 2014 Dir Ryley Grunenwald 90 min)
Two cousins from South Africa’s Wild Coast have opposing plans to develop their land. Nonhle wants to develop eco-tourism in order to protect her community’s homes, farms, graves and traditional lifestyle while Madiba is planning a titanium mine and national tolled highway. Meanwhile, their King and Queen, who oppose the mine and highway, are deposed by the South African Government.
Sat 7 May 2pm Cinema 3
(Canada/France/Costa Rica/Germany/Netherlands/Turkey/USA 2015 Dir Su Rynard 89 min)
The Messenger, a new documentary by award-winning filmmaker Su Rynard (Dream Machine, Kardia) chronicles the struggle of songbirds worldwide to survive in turbulent environmental conditions brought about by humans and argues that their demise could signify the crash of the ecosystems globally, akin to the disappearance of honey bees and the melting of the glaciers.
Snapshots of London: As Captured by International Filmmakers
Explore London, as seen through the lenses of international film directors in the 1960’s and ‘70s. Featuring François Truffaut’s stunning 1966 adaptation of Fahrenheit 451 and Horace Ové’s landmark feature Pressure.
Thu 5 May 6.30pm Cinema 2
(1975 Dir. Horace Ové 125 min)
Set in Notting Hill, Horace Ové’s landmark film follows three generations of a Trinidadian family in Britain.
Followed by Screen Talk with Film Producer Rob Buckler and in the presence of director Horace Ové.
Blow Up (15)
Sun 8 May 4.00pm Cinema 2
(1966 Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni 111 min)
Vanessa Redgrave, David Hemmings and Sarah Miles star in Antonioni's exhilarating and enigmatic tale about a London fashion photographer who stumbles upon evidence of murder.
Sun 15 May 4.00pm Cinema 2
(1965 Dir. Roman Polanski 104 min)
Polanski's first major film outside Poland is set in South Kensington, and stars Catherine Deneuve. A classic psychological thriller about a quiet, shy manicurist who retreats into a murderous fantasy world. Polanski's surreal vision becomes all too real in this powerful study of alienation.
Fahrenheit 451 (PG)
Sun 22 May 4.00pm Cinema 2
(1966 Dir. François Truffaut 112 min)
François Truffaut adapted Ray Bradbury's novel about a futuristic society in which books have been banned. Fahrenheit 451 boasts superb performances from Julie Christie and Cyril Cusack, stunning photography by Nicolas Roeg, and a beguiling score by Bernard Herrmann.
British Sounds (15)
Sun 29 May 4.00pm Cinema 2
(1969 Dir. Jean-Luc Godard 52 mins)
Commissioned in 1968 by London Weekend Television, Godard's exploration of Ford workers at Dagenham and students at Essex University was seen as too radical and never transmitted.
+ Sympathy For The Devil (aka 'One Plus One') (15)
(1968 Dir. Jean-Luc Godard 99 min)
Exploring the themes of construction (the Rolling Stones rehearsing the song 'Sympathy for the Devil') and destruction (the suicide of a revolutionary), Godard's film surrounds a triangular love affair between a young French woman, a right-wing Texan and a militant African-American.
ee more on Barbican Regular strands here.
The Divide + Q&A with Director Katharine Round and Executive Producer Christopher Hird.
Sunday 24th April
Inspired by best selling book "The Spirit Level", The Divide paints a picture of economic and social division. Weaving real stories of 7 individuals with footage from 1979 to the present day, it creates a lyrical, psychological and tragi-comic picture, that serves as both a call to arms, and a powerful warning.
LONDON: Bussey Building / CLA Art Cafe
WED 20TH APR, 2016 7:30am
The CLF Art Cafe in Peckham celebrate the life of A Tribe Called Quest member Phife Dawg, who sadly passed away recently, with a screening of TCQ doc Beats, Rhymes & Life.
Wed April 30 • We host the launch of a new regular film series showing the best of music documentaries / films about the groundbreaking musicians and artists that we love.
With the recent loss of Phife Dawg we thought it was only fitting to start with a movie about one of Hip Hop's most important acts - A Tribe Called Quest.
True masters of their craft, Michael Rapaport documents the inner workings and behind the scenes drama that follows this most innovative & influential group.
Come and raise a glass to Phife Diggy and join together in appreciation of the legacy he and The Tribe have left for future generations of Hip Hop heads.