Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. (dir: Steve Loveridge, 2018, cert 18)
Winner of the World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award at this years Sundance, Loveridge’s film is a candid portrayal of one of the most enigmatic, and at times controversial, figures in contemporary music. Mathangi Arulpragasam, better known as M. I. A. is a fiercely independent thinker and her views have set her at odds with others, not least flipping a middle finger during the NFL Super Bowl which led to her being sued by the organisation. It’s her incredible social activism that sets her apart from her peers, raising awareness of the oppression of Sri Lankan Tamils, Palestinians and African Americans, drawing on her own experiences as a child. It’s a riveting and powerful journey told with impressive authority by Loveridge.
Mon 1 Oct to Thu 4 Oct at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £5 veezi.com
Wed 3 Oct 8.45pm at Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
Distant Voices, Still Lives (dir: Terence Davies, 1988, cert 15)
A stunning 4k restoration, completed by the BFI National Archive from the original camera negative, of one of the greatest British films ever made. The autobiographical tale, drawing on Terence Davies’ own experiences of life in Liverpool during the forties and fifties is beautifully evocative with a peerless precision for detail. Pete Postlethwaite and Freda Dowie give career best performances as Father and Mother, with the nostalgia for a long lost Britishness at times overwhelming and an exquisitely note perfect score, it’s an absolute masterpiece of UK cinema.
Tue 2 Oct 6pm at mac, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH £9 macbirmingham.co.uk
Climax (dir: Gaspar Noé, 2018, cert 18)
The arrival of a new Gaspar Noé film is sure to repel the faint of heart and weak of stomach but for many, including us, it’s cinematic joy. One of the most daring filmmakers today, Noé’s oeuvre appalls and delights in equal measure, challenging audiences with a miasmic cuteness that is unrivalled. Climax is a wild ninety six minute acid trip as a group of hip hop dancers drink alcohol spiked with lsd unleashing a spiralling cacophony of dayglo visuals and noise, just like Tito, you will be fried.
Tue 2 Oct to Thu 4 Oct at Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
Fri 5 Oct to Thu 11 Oct at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £5 veezi.com
Blockheads (dir: John G. Blystone, 1938, cert U)
The Birmingham Comedy Festival bring three of the legendary duo’s films to the mac with authoritative introductions from John Ullah, Grand Sheik of the Birmingham branch of the Laurel and Hardy Appreciation Society. The pick is Blockheads which sees our heroes returning from the trenches of the First World War, though Stan is twenty years late due to not being relieved from his post, hilarious stuff of course. As Stan comments thoughtfully, “If you want me to go, I’ll stay as long as you like.”
Sun 7 Oct 2.30pm at mac, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH £9 macbirmingham.co.uk
My Life as a Courgette (dir: Claude Barras, 2016, cert PG)
A beautifully realised stop motion animation that manages to tackle heavyweight themes with a profoundly delicate touch. The tale of Icare, who prefers to be called Courgette, an orphan befriended by a kindly policeman is affecting, tragic and at times hilarious, trust us you will be moved to tears but you will love every second.
Sun 7 Oct 7pm at Ort Cafe, 500- 506 Moseley Road, Balsall Heath, Birmingham B12 9AH £5 www.meetup.com
Published on: Mon 30 Jul 2018