Outdoor cinema in the big smoke this summer

We are possibly set for the hottest summer on record here in the UK, so, although this means the planet is doomed by climate change, it also at least allows for one more year where we can chill to open air film screenings in the capital.

Already running screenings or advertising upcoming seasons for the summer are:

Rooftop Film Club:

Providing headphones, deckchairs, cocktails, and a blanket if it gets too cold, the Rooftop Film Club, as their name suggests, will be using various roof venues across London this year, including the Bussey Building in Peckham, Queen of Hoxton in Shoreditch, and Tobacco Dock. Screenings are running now and include Straight Outta Compton at the Queen, and Withnail and I at the Bussey Building on on 22 May. Future dates through to June on sale too.

The Nomad Cinema:

The Nomad Cinema is the roaming pop-up running since 2010, and has earned the reputation as ‘London’s best outdoor cinema’ [so said the Evening Standard], popping up at a range of beautiful, unique and intriguing screening locations across London and beyond. This year's venues include the Biscuit Factory in Bermondsey and The National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Films on offer include the expected crowdpleasers like Dirty Dancing, but also some offbeat choices; including Orlando and Marie Antionette at the aforementioned NMM. Screenings running now and future dates through to September on sale.

Cult Screens:

Similar to the Nomad, in that the mission statement of Cult Screens is to be ".. the country’s most luxurious and comfortable open air cinema experience. We run events throughout the UK and turn some pretty unusual and spectacular locations into cinemas." The difference is it is a UK wide project, but their London venue will by York House and gardens in Twickenham. There you can see Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Pulp Fiction and Dirty Dancing from 31 August on.

Pop-Up Screens:

Also similar to the Nomad, with venues including Fulham, Greenwich Peninsula, The City, Holborn, Hammersmith and Hither Green.

The Luna Cinema:

Classic cinema under the stars in some of the UK's most picturesque settings. London locations include Brockwell Lido for Jaws and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, and Alexandra Palace for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

 

 

Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Director Alan Clarke's work to be presented in its entirety by the BFI in its DISSENT & DISRUPTION Season


The BFI announced this week that, starting in March, they will begin a tribute season to the late filmmaker Alan Clarke. Clarke is still probably best remembered for his controversial and groundbreaking dramas: Scum, Made in Britain and The Firm, which helped make household names of actors like Tim Roth, Gary Oldman and Ray Winstone. The BFI however will not just be revisiting those classics, but presenting the entire BBC and ITV drama, and film productions of the great director/producer/writer at BFI Southbank, supported by DVD and Blu-ray releases, via VOD on BFI Player and in BFI Mediatheques across the UK. On stage discussions of his career, and screenings of once-lost TV episodes that Clarke directed, will also be part of the season. alongside a new documentary looking back at his life and work.

From a London point of view, many of Clarke's films, including Made in Britain and The Firm, offer a chance to look back at the capital from decades past, and the preoccupations that were high up the media and political agendas, such as football violence, youth alienation, skinheads and post-deindustrialisation unemployment.

The full BFI press release is below: 

London, 3 February 2016 – Beginning 28 March, the BFI will present the entire BBC and ITV drama, and film productions of the great director/producer/writer Alan Clarke (1935 –1990) with a season at BFI Southbank, DVD and Blu-ray releases, via VOD on BFI Player and in BFI Mediatheques across the UK.

 Although best remembered for three controversial and groundbreaking dramas – the notorious Scum, Made in Britain and The Firm – the breadth of Clarke’s radical, political, innovative, inspirational work, with actors including Gary Oldman (The Firm), Ray Winstone (Scum), Tim Roth (Made in Britain) and even David Bowie (Baal), and his influence on directors like Gus Van Sant, Paul Greengrass, Harmony Korine, Clio Barnard and Shane Meadows should see him rightly regarded as one of Britain’s greatest ever filmmaking talents. While much of his work was documentary-like in its gritty realism, and in the way he focused on society’s marginal groups and underdogs, his versatility saw him turn his hand to comedy (Rita, Sue and Bob Too), minimalism (Elephant, Christine) and adaptations of writers as diverse as Bertolt Brecht and Georg Büchner.

Speaking in 2000 to 400 Blows Productions, Gary Oldman said: “He radiated with energy. The energy coming off him. The enthusiasm. And one got the impression that he liked actors. Actors want to be liked, that’s the game we’re in… You felt very confident around Alan. He made you feel confident. That anything was possible and that you could… you could go the whole nine yards with him. You could try anything with Alan.”

The BFI will offer the most comprehensive collection and widest possible access to Clarke’s enduringly powerful work than ever achieved before, including Made in Britain, The Firm, Baal, Penda’s Fen, Elephant, Diane, Nina, Christine and The Road. After a screening of the recently discovered director’s cut of The Firm, critic and broadcaster Danny Leigh (whose BBC film British Film Mavericks: Alan Clarke was broadcast in 2015), will host an on-stage discussion on Clarke’s uncompromising style, looking at his legacy and the filmmakers he has inspired with producer David M Thompson, writer David Leland, and daughter Molly Clarke.

Clarke discovered incredible British talent. Among the young actors he cast in what became landmark moments early in their careers are Ray Winstone and Phil Daniels in Scum, Tim Roth (Made in Britain), Jane Horrocks (Road), Lesley Sharp (Road; Rita, Sue and Bob Too), Lesley Manville (The Firm) and David Threlfall, best-known for Shameless, who made his acting debut in Scum.

Great female writers and producers played a key part in Clarke’s career and stories focusing on sometimes flawed, sometimes bewildered but always extraordinary women form an important part of his canon. In “Alan Clarke’s Women”, collaborators including producer Margaret Matheson, writer Jehane Markham and actors Lesley Sharp and Eleanor Bron will be on-stage (following a screening of Nina) to discuss his handling of feminine and feminist subjects.

Working in television during a significant period in the evolution of TV drama, Clarke’s peers were the likes of Mike Leigh, Ken Loach, Dennis Potter and Stephen Frears, who said, inAlan Clarke (Faber & Faber): “He was sceptical, cynical of authority, rebellious but not ideological, instinctively principled but also practical and canny, solitary but the best company, authoritative but not in search of power…as serious and as funny as anyone I’ve ever met…He was the best of us.”

After beginning his career at ATV and Associated Rediffusion, Alan Clarke joined the BBC in 1969 and made his mark in the weekly feature-length drama strands The Wednesday Play andPlay for Today, with a new and highly distinctive directorial style. He developed a cult following for his hard-hitting work which dissected the darker side of British life. He told stories about neglected or despised groups in contemporary society, like skinheads and football hooligans, and he focused on the troubles in Northern Ireland on three occasions. Clarke worked with a regular team of high-calibre writers that included David Leland, David Rudkin, Roy Minton, Alun Owen and Edna O’Brien. In 1977, Scum, his violent exposé of shockingly brutal conditions in a borstal, was banned by a nervous BBC and not shown for 14 years. Determined to see the story told, Clarke then made the film version released in 1979 to great acclaim.

Dissent & Disruption: The Complete Alan Clarke – BFI Southbank Season 28 March – 30 April 2016

 Among Clarke’s best-known work that will be screened during the season is Diane (1975), Baal (1982), Made in Britain (1983), Contact (1985), Road (1987), Christine (1987),Elephant, (1989) and The Firm (1989). Rarely-seen productions will include Under the Age (1972) and To Encourage the Others (1972).

A Missing Believed Wiped Special: Alan Clarke Half Hour Stories, will reveal three once-thought-lost episodes from Associated Rediffusion’s Half Hour Story strand where Clarke cut his directorial teeth in the late 1960s; The Gentleman Caller (with George Cole) (1967), George’s Room (with John Neville and Geraldine Moffat) (1967) and Thief (with Alan Lake and Sian Philips) (1968).

A highlight of the season will be a preview of the forthcoming documentary Alan Clarke: Out of His Own Light, directed by Andy Kelleher. Contributors include Ray Winstone, Lesley Sharp and David Leland. Here, in the words of his peers, is a biography, a detailed survey of his work and an affirmation of Alan Clarke as one of the greatest British filmmakers of the 20th century.

 BFI Blu-ray and DVD releases in May and June

The BFI will release two DVD box sets and a complete Blu-ray box set with extensive newly created special features:

 Alan Clarke at the BBC, Volume 1: Dissent (1969-1977) - 6-DVD box set

Includes newly remastered presentations of all surviving Alan Clarke BBC TV productions up to 1977, as well as filmed introductions by writer David Leland, extracts from BBC discussion shows Tonight and Arena, new multi-part documentary Alan Clarke: Out of His Own Light, audio commentaries and a booklet containing new essays and full credits.

Release date: 23 May 

Alan Clarke at the BBC, Volume 2: Disruption (1978-1989) - 6-DVD box set

Includes newly remastered presentations of all Alan Clarke BBC TV productions from 1978 to 1989, as well as filmed introductions by writer David Leland, extracts from BBC discussion showOpen Air, new multi-part documentary Alan Clarke: Out of His Own Light, footage from Alan Clarke’s unbroadcast documentary Bukovsky (1977), two versions of The Firm, audio commentaries and a booklet containing new essays and full credits.

Release date: 20 June


Dissent & Disruption: The Complete Alan Clarke at the BBC - Limited Edition 13-Disc Blu-ray box set

Includes all surviving BBC TV productions directed by Alan Clarke, extensive extra features (as detailed above), a comprehensive book with new essays and full credits, and an exclusive bonus DVD containing the seven surviving Half Hour Story episodes directed by Clarke: Shelter (1967), The Gentleman Caller (1967, previously considered lost), George’s Room (1967, previously considered partially lost); Goodnight Albert (1968), Stella (1968), The Fifty Seventh Saturday (1968) and Thief (1968, previously considered lost).

Release date: 23 May 

Also on 23 May, The Firm will be released in a stand-alone Blu-ray edition, presenting the newly-discovered Director’s Cut and the original broadcast version in High Definition for the very first time.

 BFI Player and Mediatheques

A further selection of Clarke’s work, including rarities, will be available to view for free from early May at all of the BFI’s nine Mediatheques around the UK and a different selection will be accessible online on BFI Player (www.bfi.org.uk/player) from April.


Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Missed one of this year's Oscar nominated films? The BFI are showing them all from February

Nominated for 12 Oscars, The Revenant will be one of the film's screened by the BFI for their Oscar catch-up season


To mark the prestigious 88th Academy Awards, the BFI will be showing screenings of films in the running from several categories. The perfect chance to catch up. Of course, you can read reviews of these films on Smoke Screen here.

All tickets £11.75, concs £9.20 (BFI Members pay £1.70 less) on sale to BFI Patrons and Champions from Mon 18 Jan 11:30, BFI Members from Mon 18 Jan 12:30 and to the public from Tue 19 Jan 11:30. See links below for more details:


Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Christmas Film Choices in London (updated as more announced)

London does not lack for film choices during the holiday season, be it left-field curiosities, guilty pleasures or winter heart warmers. Here are just a few December highlights:

Prince Charles Cinema:

Die Hard in 70mm extended run.

Its a Wonderful Life extended run.

Indiana Jones and Back to the Future trilogies.

The PCC Christmas Pyjama Party marathon.

Meet Me in St Louis.

See Prince Charles Cinema for details and dates.

 The BFI will be screening Disney shorts old and new this Christmas

The BFI will be screening Disney shorts old and new this Christmas

BFI Southbank and IMAX:

Its a Disney Christmas Seasonal Shorts- some of the best Disney shorts from the 1930s to the present day.

Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life and the 1951 version of A Christmas Carol, Brian Desmond-Hurst's Scrooge, play on extended run in the Studio for Christmas.

The entire BFI's Christmas programming can be seen here.

 The Barbican goes punk this Christmas

The Barbican goes punk this Christmas

Barbican Film:

Never Mind the Baubles. Tue 1 - Thu 17 Dec, Cinema 3

A selection of films with a punk rock twist for audiences wishing to steer clear of festive cheer and seasonal clichés. From teenage punk Björk to GG Allin and the Murder Junkies, this programme aims to stick it to the man this Christmas. Films include the digital restoration of 1982 Icelandic documentary Rock in Reykjavík, featuring live performance footage of a teenage Björk back in her Tappi Tíkarrass days, Bruce LaBruce’s cult classic No Skin Off My Ass and Rock ’n’ Roll High School featuring The Ramones. See website for details.

The Nomad Christmas program:

London's popular pop-up cinema have a festive season on in Belgravia's Eccleston Place Courtyard, with charity coat collections for the needy on site. Runs from 10-13 December and films include Die Hard, Elf and It's a Wonderful Life. Details here.

 Underground Film Club at the Vaults in Waterloo

Underground Film Club at the Vaults in Waterloo

Underground Film Club:

A chance to explore the vaults hidden under Waterloo station in this new pop-up cinema. Details here on the site.

Shorts on Tap Christmas Film shorts:

Shorts On Tap presents: WINTER TALES - SHORT FILMS & XMAS DRINKS on Wednesday, December 16th at 93 Feet East, Brick Lane, 
London E1 from 7pm. FREE ENTRY FOR ALL!

Details here. 

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Underground Film Club and Londonist present An American Werewolf In London:

Underground Film Club and Londonist present An American Werewolf In London on Monday 14 December at 8pm. Tickets £15 (food, drink and golf are all extra).

Londonist is also screening Shakespeare In Love on 21 December at 8pm  you can book tickets here.

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The Roxy Bar & Screen Christmas Season

DETAILS
Date: Tuesday 22, Wednesday 23, Thursday 24 December 2015
Time: 6.00pm and/or 8:00 pm
Tickets: Child £6 / Adult £12 | Tickets include any main dish or burger and a glass of prosecco. Book online.

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Close-Up's New Year's Eve Film Party

Thursday 31 December 8pm - till late!
Tickets: £15 with one free drink
Box Office: 020 3784 7975

Close-Up invited you to celebrate New Year's Eve with a special double bill of Easy Rider and The Wizard of Oz. They will leave the cinema doors open and screen both films throughout the night. Films, drinks and our eccentric staff music playlists are promised.

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Christmas ticket deal at the Regent Street Cinema

 

But 3 tickets for the Regent Street CInema's Christmas movies here and get a 4th free


Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Sheffield DocFest comes to London with doc mini-season in December

Sheffield DocFest is a regular and growing fixture on the film festival circuit, with documentaries premiered or promoted there often moving into the Oscar conversation. Now a clutch of films that played at this year's festival are coming down to London for a mini-season "DocHouse presents Pick of Doc/Fest 2015" at the doc-oriented Bertha DocHouse at Curzon Bloomsbury in December.

Details below:
Good Girl (Dir. Solveig Melkeraaen/Norway 2014) Friday 4th December / 18:30 An acclaimed portrait of one woman’s descent into the darkness of mental health, Norwegian director Solveig Melkeraaen’s film Good Girl is nevertheless an often humorous and poetic response to her own condition. Taking the worst aspect of her illness - a compulsive, controlling anxiety – and puts it to good use, Melkeraaen creates an extraordinarily stylised docu-drama both heart-breaking and hopeful in equal measure. With unprecedented access to her treatment process and her loving family, Melkeraaen takes the audience on a journey through the devastating consequences of depression. The results leave us with an extremely raw but stylish autobiographical tale as deftly executed as any Michel Gondry movie.


Containment (Dir. Robb Moss, Peter Galison/Japan, United States 2015) Saturday 5th December / 18:30 The question of what becomes of our nuclear waste has been largely confined to the news archives of the 80s and 90s. However, in the aftermath of incidents such as the terrifying meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan in 2011, filmmakers Robb Moss and Peter Galison (Secrecy, 2008) re-open the debate to frightening effect in their haunting documentary Containment. Using the example of plutonium waste sealed in tanks and buried underground in the deserts of New Mexico, the film cleverly imagines how we leave our world for future generations and whether out of sight can ever really mean out of mind.

Drone (Dir: Tonje Hessen Schei/Denmark 2014) Sunday 6th December / 18:30 The ultimate exposé, Tonje Hessen Schei’s film Drone is as gripping as a blockbuster and as terrifying as any newsreel. In an age of increasing demand for virtual reality content an all-too-real kind of soldier has been born, the so-called ‘Drone Warrior’. Revealing the deadly consequences of the post-9/11 war on terror extent and spookily topical in its subject matter, Drone uncovers the perpetrators and victims on both sides of this deadly phenomenon, and asks potent questions about the legality, technology and morality of this thoroughly modern warfare.


Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.