To help your hunt for adventurous moving pictures, RADIANT CIRCUS hand-picks London’s screen highlights for the week ahead*.
This week, we’re saying happy 18th birthday to the lovely folk at Genesis Cinema who celebrate with a weeklong programme of their screen favourites. There’s also a small library shelf of exceptional adaptations, including our featured film of the week, THE STUDENT.
FRIDAY 5 MAY 2017, 20:00, WHIRLED CINEMA
Adapted from the stage, satirical Russian film THE STUDENT explores religious fanaticism through a powerful contemporary story and inventive camera work. “An often hypnotic warning against dogma’s eternal allure” (The Guardian), there’s another screening on SUNDAY 7 MAY (18:00) if you can’t make today.
Looking for an alternative? KILLER’S KISS (19:30) launches Close-Up Film Centre’s Stanley Kubrick retrospective. Every adventurous film fan should be familiar with Kubrick’s greatest hits, so why not take time to explore some of the master’s earlier works? KILLER’S KISS is his second feature, a film noir crime thriller made for only $75,000.
SATURDAY 6 MAY 2017, VARIOUS, GENESIS CINEMA
Sometimes we’re all about adventurous moving pictures and sometimes we celebrate the people that work hard to get them on screen. In that spirit, the lovely people from Mile End Road enjoy their 18th birthday this week and they’re celebrating with a weeklong selection of their favourite films. We’ve picked LOST IN TRANSLATION in 35mm + INTRO (16:15) which comes adorned with wise words from Nick Walker at Rochester Kino. Genesis is donating FREE tickets for all birthday screenings to schools, community groups and the unwaged – which is beautiful.
SUNDAY 7 MAY 2017, 14:30, STOW FILM LOUNGE
With the stage musical having opened recently to rave five star reviews, it’s time to catch up with Vincente Minnelli’s Academy Award winning movie original, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS. Distinctly lacking in plot – and werewolves – this is all about the lavish looks, the memorable music and some amazing dancing from Gene Kelly and pals.
Looking for an alternative? We have a peculiar passion for films shot entirely on soundstages: think Ridley Scott’s LEGEND, Tobe Hooper’s EATEN ALIVE or Kinoshita’s THE BALLAD OF NARAYAMA. There’s no finer example than THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER (BFI, 20:30), legendary actor Charles Laughton’s first and last go at directing for the silver screen and a truly compelling nightmare.
MONDAY 8 MAY 2017, 18:20, BFI
Often cited as an early contender for one of this century’s finest horror movies, MAY + INTRO is another movie-making debut. Lucky McKee was described by the late Roger Ebert as “the real thing” for this “illegitimate lovechild of Carrie White and Frankenstein’s monster”. Now, that’s some parentage.
Looking for an alternative? AFTER LIFE (20:00) screens at Deptford Cinema. Known as WONDERFUL LIFE in its native Japan, this is a moving fantasy about how “the souls of the recently deceased are processed before entering heaven” (Wikipedia).
TUESDAY 9 MAY 2017, 18:20, CURZON BLOOMSBURY
Looking for an alternative? Open City Docs presents ROUGH CUTS (18:30), an evening of documentary and non-fiction works in progress at The Horse Hospital. If you’re more of an outdoorsy type, why not get a blast of fresh air with 13 ASSASSINS (19.00) c/o those socially inclined folk at Nomad and their Japanese pop-up?
WEDNESDAY 10 MAY 2017, 20:20, ICA
BOATMAN + Q&A with Gianfranco Rosi launches the first ever UK retrospective of the Italian documentary director’s work. Echoing AFTER LIFE’s tales of transition, Rosi’s camera travels with ferryman Gopal as he rows across the Ganjes, India’s holy river where the dead are burned before their ashes are cast into the sacred water.
Looking for an alternative? NOVA NIGHTS returns to The Horse Hospital with EDITION #3: THE DELIRIOUSLY DELICIOUS MIX (19:30). This time, Billy Chainsaw pays tribute to the work of provocateur Stewart Home and comic book artist, Steve Martin (aka Krent Able).
THURSDAY 11 MAY 2017, 20:40, BFI
THE QUEEN OF INDEPENDENT ANIMATION: A FOCUS ON JOANNA PRIESTLY + Q&A gives a rare chance to hear from this outstanding pioneer and see a dozen of her exquisitely made films.
Looking for an alternative? Staying at BFI, why not try that rare thing, a British western? THE HELLIONS + INTRO (18:20) is an overlooked violent oddity.
FESTIVALS / SEASONS / TALKS (A-Z)
BFI stages screen talk RESEARCHING AND WRITING WOMEN’S EXPERIMENTAL FILM (8 MAY, 18:30) with Dr Lucy Reynolds (University of Westminster).
Close-Up starts a major new retrospective CLOSE-UP ON STANLEY KUBRICK, 5 to 28 MAY. They also present two evenings of NEW ZEALAND ARTISTS’ FILM: chose from feature length APPLE PIE (9 MAY, 19:30) or five new short films, THIS IS NOT FILM-MAKING (10 MAY, 19:30).
ICA stages the first ever UK retrospective of Italian documentary filmmaker GIANFRANCO ROSI: OF PLACES AND ENCOUNTERS (10 to 14 MAY). Rosi will be tackling audience questions at all screenings. Read more about his work in Ben Nicholson’s excellent BLOG.
The Institute of Light continues their FILM SCHOOL with a lecture, screening and discussion of FEAR & LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS (9 MAY, 19:15).
LOCO – LONDON COMEDY FILM FESTIVAL runs at BFI from 4 to 7 MAY.
Sci-Fi London concludes at venues across the city on SATURDAY 6 MAY.
More places to shelter from the storm in next week’s GUIDE.
*As accurate as we could make it. Apologies for any mistakes.
Featured image: THE STUDENT (2016).