RADIANT CIRCUS hunts out the best independent movie nights, film events & gallery screenings in London for the week ahead*. Here’s our SCREEN GUIDE for the week 08 to 14 DEC 2017.
This week, the Global Health Film Festival opens at Barbican Centre (08 to 09 DEC), offering a nutritious diet of thought-provoking docs and discussions. We also like the look of LIGHT SHOW #1 (08 to 10 DEC), a collab between ICA, Mubi and Little White Lies overflowing with much-loved titles such as Jacques Tati’s PLAYTIME (08 DEC 20:30) and Orson Welles’ F FOR FAKE (09 DEC 20:30).
Don’t forget to book for the special Cigarette Burn’s screening of cinematic oddity SANTA CLAUS (11 DEC 19:00) at The Institute of Light, raising funds to preserve adventurous moving pictures around the world.
Finally, our FEATURED ATTRACTION of the week is the beautifully restored APU TRILOGY at BFI (10 DEC) which screens as part of INDIA ON FILM. Another reminder that the world is simply full of stunning stories.
Tell us what you’re seeing in the comments below.
#SCREENGUIDE: We highlight up to three SINGLE-O EXHIBITS (one-off screen events) each day and offer a roundup of others. There’s a summary of MUSEUM SHOWS (exhibitions // seasons & festivals) and GRIND SHOWS (regular runs & mainstream marvels) below the line. Follow date & section links to find what you want. Use your ‘back’ button to return here.
We’ve done our best to check that there are tickets for everything listed: please click quickly.
NOW SHOWING: SINGLE-O EXHIBITS
ONE-OFF MOVIE NIGHTS, FILM EVENTS & GALLERY SCREENINGS (by date/venue)
FRIDAY 08 DECEMBER 2017
ArtHouse Crouch End: MENASHE + Q&A with writer Alex Lipschultz (18:40)
Shot in secret entirely within the Hasidic community, MENASHE looks at the bonds between father and son and sheds light on a notoriously private community. Alex Lipschultz replaces previously advertised Joshua Z Weinstein. The film also enjoys a long run at JW3 (below).
BFI: GREMLINS + Q&A with actor Zach Galligan (20:40)
Our Christmas indulgence…
The Cinema Museum: CONCRETE SOLDIERS UK + DEBATE (19:00)
UK premiere of a new doc by Nikita Woolfe about the social cleansing of housing estates and those resisting the destruction of their homes. Presented by WoolfeVision and Aylesbury Film Night to raise funds for Aylesbury Leaseholders Action Group.
SATURDAY 09 DECEMBER 2017
The Castle Cinema: DE VOORTREKKERS + LIVE PIANO SCORE (14:00)
A silent 1916 film – the oldest surviving South African feature – with live piano accompaniment by Nigerian composer Juwon Ogungbe.
Deptford Cinema: BLOODY MUSCLE BODY BUILDER IN HELL (18:15)
“A wacky, lo-fi, retro, gore-fest that draws affectionately from THE EVIL DEAD and HAUSU”. See it in double bill with CHRISTMAS EVIL (20:00), “the greatest Christmas movie ever made” (John Waters).
Rio Cinema: DISTRICT NURSE (23:30)
No-budget, self-made British thriller gets a late night screening: “a kaleidoscope of nightmares, a cacophony of schizoid fantasies with an underlying rumble of paranoia” (Elephant Magazine).
Also screening: THE BOY & THE BEAST (14:30, The David Lean Cinema); THE COMMODORE STORY (13:00, Genesis Cinema); FREE CECE! (16:00, Barbican); and, YOUR LIFE DURING WW3 (12:00 until 20:00, Tenderpixel).
SUNDAY 10 DECEMBER 2017
Ciné Lumière: BECOMING CARRY GRANT + Q&A with director Mark Kidel (16:15)
A treasure-trove of archives, film extracts and home movies that reflect the ups and downs of a journey from Bristol-born Archie Leach to Hollywood icon.
Close-Up: FILM + COMÉDIE (17:00)
Anthony Paraskeva launches his new book Samuel Beckett & Cinema with a special screening of two Beckettian rarities.
Genesis Cinema: FORTUNATA (15:30)
About a woman who, after a bitter divorce, struggles to guarantee her daughter a decent life whilst nurturing her dream of opening a beauty salon. Presented by CinemaItaliaUK.
MONDAY 11 DECEMBER 2017
Barbican: DARK RIVER + SCREEN TALK with Clio Barnard (18:30)
Following her father’s death, casual farm labourer Alice returns home to Yorkshire for the first time in 15 years to claim ownership of the family farm she believes is rightfully hers.
The Institute Of Light: SANTA CLAUS (19:00)
Help preserve film culture around the world with Cigarette Burns’ fundraiser for Permanencia Voluntaria Archivo Cinematográfico, a small independent archive in Mexico imperilled by a recent earthquake. The film is René Cardona’s “insane” Christmas fairy tale. See it and believe…
LUX Moving Image: AMIR GEORGE – BETTER MADE PROGRESS (14.30)
A retrospective survey of short films by the American artist and film programmer Amir George made between 2011 and 2016.
TUESDAY 12 DECEMBER 2017
The Cinema Museum: NIGHTMARE ALLEY (19:30)
A film close to our hearts. The Cinema Museum has the words: “To make the film more believable, the producers built a full working carnival on ten acres (40,000 m2) of the 20th Century Fox back lot. They also hired over 100 sideshow attractions and real carnival people to add further authenticity.”
The Horse Hospital: THOMAS EIKREM’S “LE ACCELERATOR” & SELECTED “ORGASMO” SHORTS (19:00)
Billy Chainsaw notches up another NOVA NIGHT. This one features “a blood drenched, corpse strewn, journey that sees the protagonist discover the true meaning of life and death” shot in glorious B&W Super 8mm.
ICA: COMMUNION (19:15)
A new Polish doc about a 14-year-old planning her brother’s Holy Communion celebration.
WEDNESDAY 13 DECEMBER 2017
Curzon Soho: NATURE OF THE BEAST + Q&A with producer, director & Dennis Skinner MP (18:30)
A portrait of the committed socialist, trade unionist and Labour politician Dennis Skinner.
Regent Street Cinema: TUTTO QUELLO CHE VUOI aka Everything You Want (19:30)
A troubled 22-years-old starts working as the carer of an old poet, triggering an unusual friendship where two very different worlds intertwine. Director/writer Francesco Bruni will be attending this screening by CinemaItaliaUK.
Stanley’s Film Club: GOD’S OWN COUNTRY + Q&A with producer Manon Ardisson (19:45)
A love story about two men seeking warmth, connection and belonging in the harsh wilderness that surrounds them. Screens with a locally-made short.
THURSDAY 14 DECEMBER 2017
BFI: PROFESSOR MARSTON AND THE WONDER WOMAN + DISCUSSION (18:00)
BFI FLARE presents an evening of LGBT subtexts in superhero stories.
Ciné Lumière: TRIBUTE TO JOHNNY HALLYDAY (18:30 & 20:30)
In memory of French rockstar Johnny Hallyday, Ciné Lumière screens Hallyday-starring L’HOMME DU TRAIN (18:30) and one of his most celebrated concerts at the Stade de France (20:30).
Haringey Independent Cinema: HAIL, CAESAR! (19:00)
“Would that it were so simple”. The last screening in a while from the community film club…
NOW SHOWING: MUSEUM SHOWS
EXHIBITIONS (by venue/event)
Barbican: PURPLE (until 07 JAN 2018 – FREE, check for times)
British artist and filmmaker John Akomfrah’s “immersive six-channel video installation addressing climate change, human communities and the wilderness”.
Barbican: Vincent Moon & Priscilla Telmon: HÍBRIDOS (until 31 DEC – FREE, check for times)
A site-specific film installation featuring the spiritual rituals of Brazil.
LUX Moving Image: TIME & TIME AGAIN: Cinenova and Women & the Law Collective (until 16 DEC – FREE, check for times)
An exhibition by Cinenova, a volunteer run feminist film and video distributor, of videos produced by Women & The Law Collective in 1986.
Whitechapel Gallery: LUIS LAZARO MATOS + ZHENG MAHLER + NGUYEN PHUONG LINH (until 28 JAN – FREE, check for times)
A new selection of moving image works from the gallery’s Artists’ Film International partnership.
SEASONS & FESTIVALS (by venue/event)
Barbican: SCIENCE ON SCREEN returns with LA JETÉE + THE BLOOD OF A POET + Presentation from Nicky Clayton & Clive Wilkins (12 DEC 18:30), exploring the shifting nature of memory and how time unfolds. JOHN AKOMFRAH PRESENTS… continues screening the artist’s hand-picked political films with one of our Cuban favourites, MEMORIES OF UNDERDEVELOPMENT (12 DEC 20:45). TIME, MEMORY, DREAM season continues with the classic PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK (14 DEC 18:30). Finally, two festivals land at Barbican this month: the London International Animation Festival (until 10 DEC) and the Global Health Film Festival (08-09 DEC).
BFI: Headline thriller season WHO CAN YOU TRUST? includes another Double Bill (MANHUNTER & HEAT, 09 DEC 16:15 & 19:00) and THE LOST HONOUR OF KATHARINA BLUM (12 DEC 18:15). There’s also a contribution from the EXPERIMENTA strand: THE THRILLER: THE FOREIGNER + RAW NERVES (13 DEC 20:30). Elsewhere, GOOD AT BEING BAD continues the Gloria Grahame season with THE BIG HEAT (various dates), THE COBWEB (09 DEC 14:30) and ODDS AGAINST TOMORROW (09 DEC 20:45). INDIA ON FILM projects a freshly restored great, all on one day – Satyajit Ray’s APU TRILOGY (10 DEC): PATHER PANCHALI (14:50), THE UNVANQUISHED (17:30), and THE WORLD OF APU (20:10).
Close-Up: HANS – A YOUNG MAN IN GERMANY (09 DEC 16:00) brings SOHRAB SHAHID SALESS: EXILES to an end whilst NEUE WELT: RADICAL VISIONS IN NEW GERMAN CINEMA (07 to 11 DEC) concludes Close-Up’s latest collab with the Goethe Institute (below). Tarkovsky returns for more: STALKER (08 DEC 19:00); IVAN’S CHILDHOOD (12 DEC 19:30); ANDREI RUBLEV (13 DEC 19:00).
Deptford Cinema: Director Tasters continue with Andrzej Zulawski (THIRD PART OF THE NIGHT, 08 DEC 20:00) and Agnes Vàrda (LES PLAGES D’AGNÈS, 12 DEC 20:00). THE NEW INDIA CINEMA strand continues with COURT (11 DEC 19:30): “an elderly folk singer and grassroots organiser, hailed as ‘the people’s poet’, is marked by the authorities as a dissident”.
French Film Festival (London dates until 10 DEC): Celebrating its 25 year, the francophone festival returns to London with a final run of screenings at Regent Street Cinema. We like the look of: MERCENARY + Q&A with director Sacha Wolff (08 DEC 19:30); BEFORE SUMMER ENDS (09 DEC 18:00); A WOMAN’S LIFE (10 DEC 14:00); and, THIS IS OUR LAND (10 DEC 16:30).
Global Health Film Festival (08 to 09 DEC): Screening at Barbican, there are passes available for both days of film & discussion as well as tickets for individual titles (which we’ve chosen from here). In recognition of World AIDS Day, we’ve chosen PILI (08 DEC 18:00) but we also (really) like the look of THE ISLAND AND THE WHALES (09 DEC 13:35), RESILIENCE (09 DEC 13:45), and IT’S NOT YET DARK (09 DEC 18:15) about Simon Fitzmaurice, a talented Irish filmmaker living with Motor Neurone Disease, as he directs his first feature with only his eyes.
Goethe Institute: Short season NEUE WELT: RADICAL VISIONS IN NEW GERMAN CINEMA (04 to 13 DEC) is a fresh collab with Close-Up and the National Film & Television School. Screenings conclude with: NOT RECONCILED (10 DEC 19:30, Close-Up); THE DEATH OF MARIA MALIBRAN (11 DEC 19:30, Close-Up); and, THE LEFT-HANDED WOMAN (13 DEC 19:00, Goethe Institute).
The Horse Hospital: The equine treatment centre provides a great vantage point for the London International Animation Festival. Amongst other delights, there’s trans feature TORREY PINES (08 DEC 21:15) – previously seen at BFI FLARE, read our writeup HERE – and a double bill of MUSIC VIDEOS (09 DEC 19:30) and LATE NIGHT BIZARRE (09 DEC 21:00).
ICA: Popular short season TRINH T MINH-HA (02 to 09 DEC) continues screening films by the influential Vietnamese-born writer, theorist, composer and filmmaker. You can still catch a repeat of her new film FORGETTING VIETNAM (09 DEC 18:45). Then there’s LIGHT SHOW #1 (08 to 10 DEC), a weekend-long collab with Mubi and Little White Lies. Much-loved screenings include Jacques Tati’s PLAYTIME (08 DEC 20:30) and Orson Welles’ F FOR FAKE (09 DEC 20:30).
London International Animation Festival (01 to 10 DEC): The festival focuses on the whole spectrum of creative animation and has programmes at Barbican Centre, Close-Up and The Horse Hospital. Stepping away from the 126 films screening in competition, there are still tickets for closing gala THE BEST OF THE FEST (09 DEC 16:00, Barbican Centre – repeated 10 DEC 16:00).
Picturehouse Central: THE ENHANCTED SCREEN invites you to ‘enter the magical world of folklore and fairy tales’. This week’s stories are: SNOW WHITE & THE SEVEN DWARVES (10 DEC 13:00); EDWARD SCISSORHANDS (11 & 12 DEC); and, TALE OF TALES (12 DEC 18:30). Other Picturehouses available.
Prince Charles Cinema: The Christmas spectacular continues with CAROL in 35mm (11 DEC 13:20), Todd Haynes’ tale of two women who develop a fast bond that becomes a love with complicated consequences. There’s also a couple of LORD OF THE RINGS – EXTENDED EDITION all-nighters (09 DEC 21:00 & 23:00), which should give you ample shelter from the storm (no entry after midnight).
Shorts On Tap: The regular short film night returns with VISIONS OF DYSTOPIA – A SELECTION OF SCI-FI SHORTS (13 DEC 19:00). Join the gang for festive drinks and their last screening of 2017.
NOW SHOWING: GRIND SHOWS
REGULAR RUNS & MAINSTREAM MARVELS (by title)
LES HOMMES DU FEU screens at Ciné Lumière (09 to 20 DEC)
A powerful homage to the men and women who risk their lives daily to protect civilians from the dangers of summer fires and arson.
HUMAN FLOW screens at The Castle Cinema (08 to 13 DEC)
Led by artist Ai Weiwei, HUMAN FLOW gives a visual expression to modern mass migration.
MENASHE screens at JW3 (from 08 to 21 DEC)
Shot in secret entirely within the Hasidic community, MENASHE looks at the bonds between father and son and sheds light on a notoriously private community.
Join the hunt for adventurous moving pictures.
*THE SMALL PRINT: As accurate as we could make it. Apologies for any mistakes. Updates & corrections will be made to the online version. We don’t filter by age/certification: all readers & subscribers should be 18+. We only include events you can book for at the time of posting. Please click quickly!
Featured image: PATEHR PANCHALI (1955).