To help your hunt for adventurous moving pictures, RADIANT CIRCUS hand-picks London’s best movies, film events and gallery screenings for the week ahead*.
This week, there’s a subtly queer spirit of resistance and rebellion in the air, including some excellent LGBT+ films in and around London Pride.
Our featured film event of the week is BLOODY BEANS + SCREEN TALK, part of the Shubbak festival of Arab culture at Barbican (8 JULY, 18:30). “Radical and playful”, Narimane Mari’s film follows a group of children ‘playing war’ by reenacting Algeria’s War of Independence. Join the director after the film to discuss what it means to be ‘free’.
FRIDAY 7 JULY 2017, 18:30, CURZON BLOOMSBURY
Continuing their commitment to docs without a UK distribution deal, Bertha DocHouse screens ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL + SKYPE Q&A with director Steve James. A small family-run business serving New York’s Chinese community, Abacus was the only bank to be prosecuted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Following the Sung’s fight to clear their name, this “stunning David-and-Goliath epic” screens daily from 8 JULY.
Looking for an alternative? SIXTH HAPPINESS + Q&A with director Waris Hussein (BFI, 18:10) explores a heady cocktail of “disability, dysfunctional family dynamics and sexual awakening”. A late night screening of WIZARD OF OZ (23:00) at Everyman Baker Street is a welcome chance to buff up our ruby slippers before tomorrow’s big parade.
SATURDAY 8 JULY 2017, 23:30, RIO CINEMA
Head to COMM•UNE PRESENTS RAVING IRAN LATE NIGHT SPECIAL after seeing our featured film (BLOODY BEANS). The beats of Sue Mueres’ documentary about Tehran’s underground techno scene will be picked up by guest DJs, taking you into the early hours. Comm•une’s past screenings have sold out; grab tickets while you can**.
Looking for an alternative? Inject some anarchy into your evening with RITUAL CUTTINGS (Close-Up, 19:00 & 21:00), a night of rare archival “Psychick Television Transmissions” featuring Thee Temple ov Psychick Youth. Or head to Deptford Cinema for their REBEL CINEMA – ALL DAY FILM FESTIVAL.
SUNDAY 9 JULY 2017, 21:00, PRINCE CHARLES CINEMA
Dukefest 2017 kicks off with the London premiere of FRAUD + THE DISSOLVING MAN. FRAUD mixes up family home movie footage to become something altogether more sinister. Or you could try closing night gala THE 35mm COCKTAIL PARTY (12 JULY, 21:00) for an evening of guest-curated trailers and cinema ephemera?
Looking for an alternative? THE WORLD TEN TIMES OVER (20:10) screens at BFI and — possibly — portrays British cinema’s first ever lesbian relationship on film.
MONDAY 10 JULY 2017, 20:30, GATE PICTUREHOUSE
NIGHTHAWKS + Q&A with director Ron Peck. Another queer first — this time Britain’s first major gay film — NIGHTHAWKS is a raw and honest study of London’s gay scene soon after the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality.
TUESDAY 11 JULY 2017, 18:15, GENESIS CINEMA
HEDWIG & THE ANGRY INCH in 35mm is one of the great film adaptations of a stage musical and comes complete with a cross-dressed performance to rival Tim Curry. John Cameron Mitchell’s miniature marvel is followed by a panel discussion on being drag.
Looking for an alternative? IRAQ IN FRAGMENTS (20:00) at Deptford Cinema is a “stunningly photographed, poetically rendered documentary of the war-torn country”.
WEDNESDAY 12 JULY 2017, 20:45, BFI
DELIA DERBYSHIRE: EXPERIMENTS IN SOUND AND DOCUMENTARY
includes introductions by David Butler (Delia Derbyshire Archive), and William Fowler (BFI). You’ll know Delia Derbyshire for her DOCTOR WHO theme, but this special event looks at the sonic pioneer’s work that followed her legendary stint at the BBC.
Looking for an alternative? DUNE in 70mm screens at Prince Charles (20:45 – other dates/times available). Ignore the idea that Lynch’s sci-fi epic is a disaster. Instead, feast on its gorgeous production design, Toto soundtrack and general mega-budget weirdness. Makes you wonder what his RETURN OF THE JEDI might have been…
THURSDAY 13 JULY 2017, 19:30, CLOSE-UP
GWENDOLYN LEICK: THINGS AS THEY WERE looks at the life, loves and work of Gertrude Stein. The evening includes Leick reading from her book Things as they Were: Gertrude Stein, my Grandmother and their Lover, followed by Perry Miller Adato’s doc GERTRUDE STEIN: WHEN THIS YOU SEE, REMEMBER ME in 16mm.
Looking for an alternative? Regular followers of RADIANT CIRCUS know that we flock to the multiplex whenever it comes to apes on film. Therefore, we will be watching WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES and we are #excited…
FESTIVALS / SEASONS / TALKS
Barbican looks at scale in cinema with THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN (11 JULY, 18:30) as part of their Cinema Matters: Bigger than Life strand. We’d also recommend “erotic arthouse shocker” DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS (13 JULY, 20:45).
Bernie Grant Arts Centre concludes a season of films about the “American poet, filmmaker and gay rights activist” with SHORTS – A MARLON RIGGS RETROSPECTIVE (8 JULY, 19:30).
BFI’s INDIA ON FILM includes discussion INDIAN WOMEN FILMMAKERS IN FOCUS (10 JULY, 18:30) followed by FIRAAQ (10 JULY, 20:40), A DEATH IN THE GUNJ (11 JULY, 20:30), and GULABI GANG (13 JULY, 20:30). All screenings include an intro from guest curator Meenakshi Shedde.
The Duke Mitchell Film Club stages DUKEFEST 2017 from 9 to 12 JULY.
Shubbak festival of arab culture continues across London. In addition to our featured film BLOODY BEANS + SCREEN TALK, we also like the look of OBSCURE + Q&A with director Soudade Kaadan (9 JULY, 16:30, Barbican) which questions the validity of cinema in the face of atrocity.
Tenderpixel has become a TV set for their current installation by the gang at CONGLOMERATE. Check the gallery’s website for opening times and other activities.
More places to shelter from the storm in next week’s GUIDE.
*As accurate as we could make it. Apologies for any mistakes.
** We aim to only cover events you can get tickets for at the time of writing. Click quickly.
Featured image: BLOODY BEANS (2013).