THE BALLY #199: What to see in London this week [28 APR to 04 MAY 2023]

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 a banner advert for BAR TRASH Cult Films & Brunch at Rule Zero.
BAR TRASH presents cult films & brunch at Rule Zero in Hackney Wick – BOOKING NOW!!

Welcome to another screen week!

I had the joy of being interviewed by Anna McKibbin for a forthcoming article for the Independent Cinema Office about the rise and rise of the cult and curious film night this week. As well as the general ‘how did BAR TRASH start?’ and ‘where’s it going?’ questions (not entirely sure I know…), we spent a lot of time talking about pro-social forms of cinema and how independent exhibitors across the country are creating events that bring people together and deliberately eschew rigid ideas about how audiences are ‘meant’ to behave and which films are ‘meant’ to be shown.

I think this idea of an alternative cinema that puts people’s experience on a par with the film is something ICA are also now exploring (from their own perspective) with a new monthly series of takeovers, Screen Practices, launching this weekend. I say ‘think’ not to be disingenuous, but to further encourage the ICA to review how they describe their events to start dismantling barriers to inclusion that can be created by the unnecessarily complex, coded language of the academy.

Looking at this issue from another perspective, I am shocked by the number of dead and dormant social media accounts and websites I scroll through when compiling these listings. A significant number of London’s DIY film clubs and exhibitors have ceased creating their own forms of accessible, affordable and social cinema for whatever reasons. When I speculated on social media about how BFI Southbank could help their audiences discover the wealth of London’s DIY/alternative cinema talent – after all, what’s a flagship without its fleet? – I got several ‘likes’ and comments from other exhibitors. We clearly need to do more to help alternative cinema become more sustainable.

Finally, I went on my own to see new release EVIL DEAD RISE in the biggest screen on a mid-week night at my local chain cinema this week (it’s walking distance from home and my hotdog fetish needs fuelling every now and then…). There were just four people dispersed across a very big room. Whilst the staff were very lovely, you have to wonder how anyone has the reserves of energy to make this unsocial version of the cinema business model last?

For all of these reasons, I’ve committed the cardinal sin of making my own event – a brunch screening of ZONE TROOPERS at Rule Zero on Sunday 30 April – my Featured Attraction of the Week. Because it’s a very social screening of a rarely shown cult film. And we still need to shift a few more tickets.

See you in the darkness, and stay safe.


ZONE TROOPERS d. Danny Bilson, 1985 + Intro, intermission, prize giveaways & brunch! at Rule Zero’s Sub Zero (30 APR 12:00 – £1).

“When a World War II American military patrol gets lost behind enemy lines in Italy and stumbles upon a crashed alien spacecraft, they quickly come to realise they must join forces with the extra-terrestrials if they are to defeat the Nazis who are hell-bent on using the alien technology to win the war.”

“Indie U.S. production company Empire International Pictures (aka Empire Entertainment) was a real family affair. Founder Charles Band appointed his dad, Albert – an experienced director/producer (ZOLTAN… HOUND OF DRACULA) – as head of production and recruited his brother, Richard (GHOULIES), to write several film scores. Beloved Empire titles include TRANCERS (1984), RE-ANIMATOR (1985) and ROBOT JOX (1990).”

“ZONE TROOPERS comes from the period of ‘peak Empire’ before the studio’s eventual financial collapse in the late 80s which led Charles Band to launch Full Moon Entertainment, a company he still runs today (home of the PUPPET MASTER franchise). Plugging yourself into this “daft” little number will put an instant smile on your face, making it another pitch-perfect slice of Sunday brunchtime cinema.”

BAR TRASH films are served with themed drinks, introductions, intermissions, prize giveaways and subtitles (where possible). Film £1 / Film + Bottomless Prosecco £25. Full brunch menu available at your table from the Rule Zero kitchen (billed separately).

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GRAND HOTEL d. Edmund Goulding, 1932 + Intro & raffle, presented by Women & Cocaine at The Cinema Museum (28 APR 19:30).


THE FLYING FOOL 35mm d. Walter Summers, 1931 in association with Historic Croydon Airport Trust at The David Lean (29 APR 14:00).


Never On Sunday: MARCH, MARCH, TRA-TA-TA! d. Raimundas Vabalas, 1964 + Intro by Lina Kaminskaitė & Ehsan Khoshbakht at Close-Up (30 APR 20:15).


ENYS MEN d. Mark Jenkin, 2022 + Live score by The Cornish Sound Unit at BFI Southbank (01 MAY 18:40).


EL SUR d. Víctor Erice, 1983 + Q&A with Professor Peter Evans, presented by Wimbledon Film Club at Curzon Wimbledon (02 MAY 20:30).

This is a film still from SANTA SANGRE, presented by Video Bazaar at The Garden Cinema (03 MAY 2023).


SANTA SANGRE dir Alejandro Jodorowsky, 1989 presented by Video Bazaar at The Garden Cinema (03 MAY 20:15).


Woman with a Movie Camera: THE HEADLESS WOMAN aka La mujer sin cabeza d. Lucrecia Martel, 2008 + Intro by Zeina Durra at BFI Southbank (04 MAY 20:30).

Full daily listings in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.

THE GUARD FROM UNDERGROUND d. Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 1992


  • Includes (check venue for full listings): THE DEVIL QUEEN d. Antonio Carlos da Fontoura, 1974 + Q&A with KK Obi and Hélène Selam Kleih, hosted by Miss Jason (28 APR 20:30); DRYLONGSO d. Cauleen Smith, 1998 + Conversation with artist-filmmaker Rachel Jones & Róisín Tapponi (29 APR 16:00); THE GUARD FROM UNDERGROUND d. Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 1992 (29 APR 23:00); ORIGINS OF A MEAL d. Luc Moullet, 1978 + Panel with Missy Flynn (Founder of Rita’s Dining) and Imogen Kwok, hosted by Jago Rackham (Ecstasy Cookbook) (30 APR 11:00); LIFE ON THE CAPS d. Meriem Bennani, 2022 + Conversation with visual artist Anthea Hamilton hosted by Róisín Tapponi (30 APR 18:00).
  • Special events: Opening Party (28 APR 22:00).
  • Part of: Screen Practices.

More seasons listed in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.


Various venues, inc: Barbican / Ciné Lumière / ICA / Olympic Studios / Peckhamplex / Picturehouse Cinemas

RODEO dir Lola Quivoron, 2023

Various venues, inc: ArtHouse Crouch End / Barbican / The Castle Cinema / Ciné Lumière / Curzon Cinemas / ICA / Peckhamplex / Rich Mix / Rio Cinema


Various venues, inc: ArtHouse Crouch End / Chiswick Cinema / Curzon Cinemas / Everyman Cinemas / JW3 / Olympic Studios / Peckhamplex / Phoenix Cinema / Picturehouse Cinemas / Regent Street Cinema

More new releases in this week’s SCREEN GUIDE.

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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. //.