This is a film still from HIS HOUSE, screening in London this week at Genesis Cinema as part of the Black Lens Film Festival (18 July 2021).

THE BALLY #115: What to see in London this week [16 to 22 JUL 2021]

Welcome to THE BALLY where we help you find what to see in London this week across DIY, indie & alternative cinema events, online, outdoors & in venues.

By RADIANT CIRCUS // Twitter @radiantcircus / Instagram @radiantcircus

This is the screen week when we reach the fourth stage of the government’s COVID-19 roadmap… RADIANT CIRCUS supports venues asking audiences to continue to wear face coverings (unless exempt or otherwise eating and drinking) as well as those that are continuing to offer socially distanced seating. The laws may be changing on 19 July 2021, but our shared safety still seems like a mission worth pursuing. It’s not my job to tell you what to do, but I’ll still be wearing my mask next week out of respect for venue staff and my fellow patrons.

Let’s get to the rest of the week ahead…

Due to technical issues on the night, one of our previous ‘featured attractions of the week’ – No Bollocks Film Club’s presentation of KUMIKO, THE TREASURE HUNTER at The Castle Cinema – has been rearranged and goes again this week (20 JUL – see listings). Ciné-Real 16mm Film Club returns to the same venue with another of their sure-to-be-sold-out screenings, this time firing up Ümit’s projector (not literally we hope…) for Terry Gilliam’s BRAZIL (dates from 22 JUL).

If you enjoyed last week’s sporting documentaries, you can set your Tokyo Olympics & Paralympics anticipation to fever pitch with BOARDERS, a doc about the UK skateboarding team and their sport’s first appearance at the games (Genesis Cinema, 16 JUL). Last week’s Wednesday highlight, volleyball doc THE WITCHES OF THE ORIENT, gets a wider release this week as well as repeat screenings of the recorded Q&A featuring director Julien Faraut, Manga expert Paul Gravett and England volleyball player Maria Bertelli (see our listings for dates/details).

Over at the BFI (or, we should say, beaming from the BFI…) it’s time for their Woman with a Movie Camera Summit (17 to 18 July) which is all about “reframing the conversation around women and film”. The event takes place online and features a packed programme of live zooms, recorded panels and short film programmes. If you’re in London the evening before the summit starts (16 JUL), you can use your summit pass to get reduced priced tickets to BFI Southbank’s IRL preview of Claudia Weill’s newly restored GIRLFRIENDS and a screening of Márta Mészáros’s THE GIRL (see our listings for details).

The Rio Cinema gets taken over by THE RULE OF SEVEN, a new work from choreographer Tony Adigun, head of contemporary dance collective Avant Garde (20 to 21 JUL). You can opt for the full immersive experiencearound the corridors of the Rio or simply see the film, a dance performance filmed at Shoreditch Town Hall that “explores a dystopian future where artistic expression is forbidden by oppressive regimes around the world”. If that sounds a bit too energetic, Pitchblack Playback returns to the Rio at the end of the week with one of their moving image specials, a screening of Tim Pope’s concert film THE CURE – ANNIVERSARY 1978-2018 LIVE IN HYDE PARK (22 JUL).

In new releases, Questlove’s debut doc SUMMER OF SOUL (… OR, WHEN THE REVOLUTION COULD NOT BE TELEVISED) makes the biggest splash and can be seen almost everywhere, with DEERSKIN trailing not far behind… The Prince Charles has week-long revivals of both BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA and TOP GUN in time for their 35th Anniversaries and let’s make special mention of Picturehouse for their week-long run of Menelik Shabazz’s THE STORY OF LOVERS ROCK. Finally, there are special preview screenings of Philippe Lacôte’s NIGHT OF THE KINGS at both Ciné Lumière (18 & 20 JUL) and as part of We Are Parable’s Who We Are initiative at Rio Cinema (19 JUL). See our GRIND SHOW listings for all the details.

For our Featured Attraction of the Week, I’m returning to my longstanding love of horror and picking Remi Weekes’ acclaimed chiller HIS HOUSE which screens with an appearance by the writer/director as part of Black Lens Film Festival at Genesis (18 JUL). Indeed, the whole programme for Black Lens is looking strong at venues across town including BFI and Catford Mews… Given that I’m in the mood for some thrills, I’ll also try to get to see the subtly titled GET THE HELL OUT which is also at Genesis but this time part of Chinese Visual Festival (22 JUL).

See you in the darkness,


HIS HOUSE d. Remi Weekes, 2020 + Intro/Q&A with the director at Genesis Cinema (18 JUL 17:20) / Part of Black Lens Film Festival.

  • “After making a harrowing escape from war-torn South Sudan, a young refugee couple struggle to adjust to their new life in a small English town that has an unspeakable evil lurking beneath the surface.”
  • One of the best British horror debuts in years, populated by well-drawn characters and a particularly nasty spirit. If you get a chance to move into HIS HOUSE, take it.” (Empire Magazine)


GIRLFRIENDS d. Claudia Weill, 1978 preview at BFI Southbank (16 JUL 18:15) / Part of Woman With A Movie Camera.


MATTHEW BARNEY’S CREMASTER CYCLE: CREMASTER 4, 1, 5 & 2 + Intro by Charlie Fox at Picturehouse Central (17 JUL 17:00).

Continues Sunday: MATTHEW BARNEY’S CREMASTER CYCLE: CREMASTER 3 + Intro by Charlie Fox at Picturehouse Central (18 JUL 16:00).

This is a film still from HIS HOUSE, screening in London this week at Genesis Cinema as part of the Black Lens Film Festival.


HIS HOUSE d. Remi Weekes, 2020 + Intro/Q&A with the director at Genesis Cinema (18 JUL 17:20) / Part of Black Lens Film Festival.

This is a film still from NIGHT OF THE KINGS (2020) which screens at Rio Cinema this week (19 JUL).


NIGHT OF THE KINGS aka La Nuit des rois d. Philippe Lacôte, 2020 + Live spoken word performance presented by We Are Parable at Rio Cinema (19 JUL 18:00) / Part of Who We Are.

This is a film still from LA CAPTIVE screening at Cine Lumière today (20 July 2021).


LA CAPTIVE d. Chantal Akerman, 2000 at Ciné Lumière (18 JUL 14:00 / 20 JUL 18:10) / Part of Women Pioneers Of French Cinema.


FALLEN ANGELS 4K aka Do lok tin si d. Wong Kar Wai, 1995 at ICA (18 JUL 20:45 / 21 JUL 18:30) / Part of The World Of Wong Kar Wai.


BRAZIL 16MM d. Terry Gilliam, 1985 presented by Ciné-Real 16mm Film Club at The Castle Cinema (22 JUL 19:30 / 25 JUL 13:45 / 01 AUG 13:45).

This is a film still from SUMMER OF SOUL (d. Questlove, 2021) which opens across London this week.


This is a film still from THE WITCHES OF THE ORIENT (2021) which screens at Bertha DocHouse today (14 July 2021).

THE WITCHES OF THE ORIENT d. Julien Faraut, 2021

ROCKS d. Sarah Gavron, 2020 at Sunset Screening Sessions at The Homestead Cafe at Beckenham Park Place (16 JUL 21:00).

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*THE SMALL PRINT: Opinions author’s own. // As accurate as we could make it. Apologies for any errors. Updates & corrections will be made to the online version only. // Event dates/times/formats are subject to change by the venue/organiser. Events may already be sold out at the time of posting, so please click quickly. // We try to list as many original format screenings as we can (8 to 70MM), but sometimes formats change due to age of the print, availability, logistics etc, so please check ahead with your venue if the format is your thing. // All images are used in the spirit of fair use for reporting & review – no ownership is implied or intended / unless otherwise credited to RADIANT CIRCUS as the original rights holder. We will remove any images immediately upon request – just get in touch. // We don’t filter our listings by age/certification: all readers & subscribers should therefore be 18+. // Finally, we always try to follow The Carny Code by “not screwing up anyone else’s game”, but everyone can make mistakes… If something does go wrong, we will always do our best to put it right. //.