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.
Welcome to another screen week! This one’s worthy of some serious celebration as London’s cluster of film clubs continues to grow… the scene is starting to feel like a choral reef that’s reviving from a recent bleaching (if you’ll pardon my gushing…).
Start your week(end) with Drunken Scorpion’s new south of the river show, bringing fighting games, hip hop beats and classic kung fu titles THE HAND OF DEATH + DREADNAUGHT to Whirled Cinema (with their late license the action can go into the early hours…). It’s also FRIDAY THE 13TH, and you can enjoy Sean S. Cunningham’s 1980 original indoors at The Prince Charles and Everyman Cinemas, and outdoors at Rooftop Film Club. Being a fan of overlooked sequels and forgotten formats, I’d make a personal priority to see part 3 from 35mm (although not in 3D) at The Prince Charles.
On Saturday, French Impressions returns to Watermans with Jon Davies giving his analysis of BENEDETTA, and there’s a special screening of WHITE RIOT at Catford Mews. Hannah Strong will be introducing one of my favourites, Gus Van Sant’s TO DIE FOR along with Sofia Coppola’s THE BLING RING, as a way of launching her new book, Sofia Coppola: Forever Young at BFI Southbank (14 MAY). On Sunday, Token Homo and Last Frame Club return with another of their Queer Horror Nights at The Castle – gay director David Freyne’s post zombie outbreak movie, THE CURED – but it’s also a day for another dose of John Davies as he introduces LE DERNIER COMBAT at The Cinema Museum, CinemaItaliaUK presents MARX CAN WAIT at Riverside Studios, and Queer Cinema Club screens THE SHINY SHRIMPS at London LGBTQ+ Community Centre. There’s something else rather special going on, but I’ll get to that in a bit…
Your working week begins with Deeper Into Movies showing FRANCIS BACON: A BRUSH WITH VIOLENCE at Farr’s Dalston and a special screening of Sergei Paradjanov’s restored SHADOWS OF FORGOTTEN ANCESTORS to raise funds for the Dovzhenko Film Centre in Kyiv at King’s College London. On Tuesday, Sands Films Cinema Club presents George Hoellering’s 1936 docu-fiction HORTOBÁGY in-venue and online, Tufnell Park Film Club gives you KILL BILL: VOL 1 , and Rebel Reel Cine Club continues a run of brilliant screenings with VALLEY OF THE DOLLS at Rio Cinema (all 17 MAY). Tuesday is also INTERNATIONAL DAY AGAINST HOMOPHOBIA, BIPHOBIA & TRANSPHOBIA, so I’ve gathered as many screenings as I could spot (see Tuesday’s listings for details).
Wednesday gets busy again, with Pitshanger Pictures presenting both SHALL WE DANCE and WILD ROSE at St Barnabas Church Ealing, New East Cinema screening Ukrainian film REFLECTION at Barbican, Rio Cinema hosting a director Q&A for AIDS DIVA: THE LEGEND OF CONNIE NORMAN, and Kennington Noir projecting MYSTERY STREET at The Cinema Museum (all 18 MAY). Wrap your week with Highgate Film Society and DISTANT VOICES, STILL LIVES at HLSI, another fundraiser for Ukraine at Pushkin House, Labour, Creativity & Freedom: Solidarity Film Screening, and Lobotomy Room’s free presentation of SONG OF SONGS at Fontaine’s (all 19 MAY).
Rep seasons continue at their steady pace – as you’d expect in the middle of the month – with a bumper crop from the ESSENTIAL CINEMA series at Close-Up, and repeat screenings for many of the key titles in our Featured Attraction of the Month, CRUEL FLESH: FILMS OF THE NEW FRENCH EXTREMITY at BFI Southbank. The Garden Cinema has added an intro from critic and Contributing Editor at Empire Magazine, Amon Warmann, to their Sunday screening of TO SIR, WITH LOVE as part of their CELEBRATING SIDNEY POITIER season (15 MAY).
In festivals, this week’s new openings include Beyond Words French Literature Festival (16 to 22 MAY), Queer East Film Festival (18 to 29 MAY), Sci-Fi London (19 to 22 MAY), and one I missed last week, SERET International Israeli Film Festival (12 to 19 MAY). There’s a bumper crop of new releases too, offering good choice across London’s indie screens. I’ve highlighted Leah Purcell’s THE DROVER’S WIFE: THE LEGEND OF MOLLY JOHNSON, the Daniels’ EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE, Colm Bairéad’s THE QUIET GIRL, and Gaspar Noé’s VORTEX.
I’ve chosen SUPAKINO aka Ranjit S. Ruprai’s long-awaited return with a Bombay Mix double bill at Rio Cinema as my Featured Attraction of the Week (15 MAY). I can’t be there for his show as I’ll be wrestling with a zombie outbreak at The Castle Cinema, but I’m sure glad to see him back on the scene. If you haven’t experienced Ranjit’s encyclopaedic love of incredibly strange films, you really should take the deep dive.
See you in the darkness, and stay safe.
Richard // RADIANT CIRCUS
Bombay Mix: THE TRIP + OM DAR-B-DAR ds. Roger Corman, 1967 + Kamal Swaroop, 1988 + Intro presented by SUPAKINO at Rio Cinema (15 MAY 13:00 + 15:15).
“After more than two years, SUPAKINO aka Ranjit S. Ruprai returns with a ‘Psychedelic Marketing’ double bill of Roger Corman’s THE TRIP (1967) and Kamal Swaroop’s OM DAR-B-DAR (1988), two stories of metamorphosis and revelation in the modern world of brand names, advertising jingles, scientific progress and global popular culture. Ranjit will be exploring the connections between these cult films and will be joined by special guest Dr. Omar Ahmed, film scholar and curator, before the screenings.” (SUPAKINO)
BOMBAY MIX: Indian cinema meets the rest of the world in a mix of movies that share themes, stories and genres. Part of an on-going programme of double bills that invite audiences to explore cinema and make new connections.
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FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 3 35mm d. Steve Miner, 1982 at The Prince Charles (13 MAY 21:00 – not in 3D!).
Ukraine Fundraiser: SHADOWS OF FORGOTTEN ANCESTORS d. Sergei Paradjanov, 1965 + Zoom Q&A with the film restoration expert, Daniel Bird raising funds for Dovzhenko Film Centre in Kyiv at King’s College London (16 MAY 19:00 – Donation requested).
VALLEY OF THE DOLLS d. Mark Robson, 1967 presented by Rebel Reel Cine Club at Rio Cinema (17 MAY 18:15).
REFLECTION d. Valentyn Vasyanovych, 2021 presented by New East Cinema at Barbican (18 MAY 18:10).
Full daily listings in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.
ESSENTIAL CINEMA at Close-Up
- Includes (check venue for full listings): TOKYO STORY aka Tokyo Monogatari d. Yasujirô Ozu, 1953 (13 MAY 20:00); LAST YEAR IN MARIENBAD d. Alain Resnais, 1961 (14 MAY 18:30); THEOREM d. Pier Paolo Pasolini, 1968 (14 MAY 20:15); BEAU TRAVAIL d. Claire Denis, 1999 (15 MAY 18:30); LIFT TO THE SCAFFOLD d. Louis Malle, 1958 (15 MAY 20:15).
More rep seasons listed in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.
- Beyond Words French Literature Festival (16 to 22 MAY).
- Focus Hong Kong (12 to 13 MAY).
- Odyssey: A Chinese Cinema Season (10 MAY to 10 JUNE).
- Queer East Film Festival (18 to 29 MAY).
- Sci-Fi London (19 to 22 MAY).
- SERET International Israeli Film Festival (12 to 19 MAY).
- UK Asian Film Festival (04 to 15 MAY 2022).
- Village Screen Film Week (10 to 15 MAY).
THE DROVER’S WIFE: THE LEGEND OF MOLLY JOHNSON dir. Leah Purcell, 2021:
More new releases in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.
- Sine Screen presents Vulnerable Histories at Close-Up & The Garden Cinema (19 to 26 AUG 2023)
- Lost Reels presents 16mm & 35mm screenings at The Cinema Museum & ICA (19 & 31 AUG 2023)
- The Duke Mitchell Film Club presents DukeFest 2023: A Brave New World (13 to 16 AUG 2023)
- Cinema Mentiré launches with OLHAR PERIFERICO season (AUG 2023)
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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. //.