To help your hunt for adventurous moving pictures, RADIANT CIRCUS handpicks the best movies, film events and gallery screenings in London for the week ahead*.
This week, there’s a strong focus on the relationship between music and film with documentaries about musicians and their venues as well as events looking at the significance of music in film fictions. Elsewhere, there’s a clutch of opportunities to explore that most skittish of screen creatures, artists’ film, as well as a brace of short film events for lovers of movies in miniature.
> Let us know where you’re seeking shelter in the comments below!
FRIDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2017, 18:00, CINÉ LUMIÈRE
A JOURNEY THROUGH FRENCH CINEMA + INTRO from director Bertrand Tavernier gives us his whirlwind tour of the very best of French film from the 1930s to the early 1970s. Speaking of whirlwinds, Tavernier must have his Uber on standby as he will be taking part in a Q&A session after another screening of the film on the same night at BFI (18:45). Busy times…
Looking for an alternative? For another insight into French films and filmmaking, why not try THE GRADUATION (18:20) at Bertha DocHouse? This upclose and personal doc peers into the application process for acclaimed French film school La Fémis in Paris and promises to be a real eye opener. One of the excellent DocHouse Firsts without a UK release, THE GRADUATION screens all week.
SATURDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2017, 21:00, DEPTFORD CINEMA
Our weekly splash of genre cinema comes with ISOLATION, an Irish horror film about the terrifying fallout from genetic experimentation on cattle. The mutant killer cows (yes, really…) will chase you down the aisles as part of Scalarama, the national DIY festival of film culture.
Looking for an alternative? THIS LAND, MY LAND, ENG-LAND! + Q&A with Sanjay Kak, actor Rita Wolf and professor Virinder Kalra (BFI 13:50) kicks off a weekend of Kak’s documentary films curated by Tajender Sagoo, director of Frank Brazil. Part of INDIA ON FILM.
SUNDAY 17 SEPTEMBER 2017, VARIOUS
One day, two documentaries about black lives in modern day America…
Picturehouse Central screens STRONG ISLAND (15:25) whilst Regent Street Cinema screens QUEST (14:00, 16:30 & 19:00). STRONG ISLANDS is “a searing critique of the US justice system and a dissertation on the grief of one African/American family”. QUEST was filmed over a period of eight years in which filmmaker Jonathan Olshefski “chronicles the daily struggles and successes of the Raineys, an African-American family living in Philadelphia.” Take your pick. Different days/times available for both films.
Looking for an alternative? TOWARDS OTHER CINEMAS at Whitechapel Gallery (11:30 to 18:00) is a series of screenings and discussions exploring experimental film and video works made in 1970s Britain. Screened in partnership with moving image luminaries LUX, tickets for the day are £15/£12concs.
MONDAY 18 SEPTEMBER 2017, 20:20, BFI
Hailing somewhat from the same stable as ISOLATION, ON BODY & SOUL + Q&A with director Ildiko Enyedi is an “unusual, dreamlike film” about love blossoming in a Hungarian slaughterhouse. The writer/director’s first film in 18 years gets its preview at BFI tonight. Give the trailer a go – it’s a beauty.
TUESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2017, VARIOUS
One day, two selections of short films that focus on diversity…
Shorts on Tap presents ANY COLOUR YOU LIKE (19:00, 93 Feet East, Brick Lane), “a celebration of diversity, tolerance and equality in a stunning selection of short films from UK and international directors.” Not far away, QUEERBEE offers up a new evening of short films exploring LGBT+ identity at Genesis Cinema (19:00). If you’d like to see both, QUEERBEE pops up again a little later in the week at Stanley’s Film Club (21 SEP 20:00).
Looking for an alternative? NUBLU + INTRO by director Sercan Sezgin screens at ICA (20:25). The film is “an impressionistic documentary about an underground jazz club of the same name in the lower east side encompassing the music traditions of NYC”. It features big chunks of musical performances whilst also visiting the history of earlier jazz clubs in the East Village.
WEDNESDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 2017, 19:30, REGENT STREET CINEMA
PUNK IN LONDON + Q&A is billed as “one of the most important yet rarely seen documents of the Punk Rock era”. The 1977 film featuring The Clash, X-Ray Spex, The Adverts, The Lurkers, Chelsea and Subway Sect, will be followed by a Q&A with director Wolfgang Büld and Vic Godard of The Subway Sect.
Looking for an alternative? JIM JARMUSCH REVISITED (Barbican 19:30) celebrates the music that saturates the American master’s films. Repeats tomorrow (21 SEP 19:30). Across the road, Barbican also hosts THE ARTIST + SCREENTALK from Ludovic Bource (19:00), Oscar winning composer of the score for the silent film.
THURSDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 2017, 19:30, CLOSE-UP
THE INCREDIBLE SIMULTANEITY CONSOLE (07 SEP to 26 OCT) is a season screening twenty-eight artists’ film and videos to celebrate DVD label Filmarmalade. Up this week is PROGRAMME III (21 SEP 19:30) which includes mind-bending works by Let me Feel Your Finger First, Patricia Shrigley and Luciano Zubillaga.
Looking for an alternative? There’s a FREE bar screening of RADIANT CIRCUS favourite DOG DAY AFTERNOON (19:00) at Genesis Cinema tonight. The evening includes a Q&A with Al Pacino expert Mark Searby.
FESTIVALS / SEASONS / TALKS (A–Z)
Barbican continues their COLLECTIVE VISIONS (10 SEP to 26 OCT) looking at cinema’s ability to bring people together. The film this week is HARLAN COUNTY (19 SEP 18:15), Barbara Kopple’s Oscar winning documentary offers “an urgent exploration on the power of unions and their battles against authority”. In these worrying times, try huddling together with DR. STRANGELOVE + PRESENTATION from astrophysicist Prof Sandra Chapman (19 SEP 18:15).
Bernie Grant Arts Centre continues seasons dedicated to SIDNEY POITIER – IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT (15 SEP 19:30) – and ASGHAR FARHADI, the Iranian director behind acclaimed hit A SEPARATION (21 SEP 19:30).
Bertha DocHouse brings HOT DOCS (21 to 24 SEP) to London, showcasing the best films from Canada’s International Documentary Festival. There are still tickets for opening night gala LET THERE BE LIGHT (21 SEP 18:30) which includes a Q&A with with co-director Mila Aung-Thwin.
BFI continues excellent seasons dedicated to JEAN-PIERRE MELVILLE (try THE ARMY OF SHADOWS + Q&A with Melville’s nephew 16 SEP 15:00) and the ever evolving INDIA ON FILM. Elsewhere, why not try a Friday night double bill of ‘lesser’ Kings with FIRESTARTER (15 SEP 18:20) and CHILDREN OF THE CORN (20:40) as part of STEPHEN KING ON SCREEN?
The Cinema Museum hosts an evening of short films TRANSGENDER FILM FESTIVAL (15 SEP 18:00) from Traumkino whilst Kennington Bioscope screens FILIBUS (20 SEP 19:30), a 1915 Italian crime drama with sci-fi trappings.
Close-Up continues two retrospectives. WERNER HERZOG (01 to 29 SEP) includes one of our favourites THE ENIGMA OF KASPAR HAUSER (15 SEP 19:30) whilst Austrian documentarist RUTH BECKERMANN (03 to 24 SEP) offers up a host of exciting things. We like the look of ZORO’S BAR MIZWA (18 SEP 19:30).
Deptford Cinema takes part in national DIY film festival Scalarama with a clutch of beauties. In addition to ISOLATION (above), we’d also recommend PALMS (16 SEP 18:00) and documentary MACHINES + MOONDOC SHORTS (17 SEP 20:00).
ICA stays open all night (15 to 16 SEP, doors open 20:00, last entry 02:00) as artist Stewart Uoo presents the fifth iteration of cult event IT’S GET BETTER, “an annual night bringing together a diverse group of musicians, artists and performers alongside film and video, and a cinema programme of artist-selected adult films.” Then there’s AVANT-NOIR VOLUME 3 (20 SEP 18:45), an evening of recent work by African and African diaspora film and video artists.
Lux launches new exhibition KATE DAVIS at their Waterloo Park Centre, featuring the artist’s latest film CHARITY (2017), which was commissioned as part of the Margaret Tait Award, Scotland’s most prestigious moving image prize for artists (17 SEP to 28 OCT – check for restricted opening days/times).
Tate Modern continues their programme of artists’ films with the chance to explore the collaborative works of 2017 Turner Prize-nominee Rosalind Nashashibi and artist Lucy Skaer, WHY ARE YOU ANGRY? (20 SEP 18:30).
Whitechapel Gallery continues the 10TH ANNIVERSARY SCREENING ARTISTS’ INTERNATIONAL (daily until 17 SEP) giving you a chance to survey a decade of artists’ film and moving image works chosen by Whitechapel’s international partners.
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 film events you can get tickets for at the time of posting. Click quickly.
Featured image: A MARVELLOUS NEGATIVE CAPABILITY (2012).