Handsworth Songs (dir: John Akomfrah, 1987, cert n/a)
Rare screening of the Black Audio Film Collective’s award winning film Handsworth Songs, commissioned by Channel 4 as part of their Britain: The Lie of the Land strand. The film challenges media perception of the 1985 riots that took place in Handsworth over two days in September following excessive Police use of stop and search powers. The filmed essay deliberately eschews conventional narration leaving the viewer to interpret and create their own narrative. Handsworth Songs is a powerful work and its stunning mix of archive footage, contemporary interviews and music is revelatory.
Thu 28 Jun 6pm at Grand Union, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RS Free www.eventbrite.co.uk
Village Rockstars (dir: Rima Das, 2017, cert U) + Director Q&A
A delightful coming of age story that recalls John Carney’s excellent Dublin based musical awakening Sing Street. Ten year old Dhunu, played with such plucky abandon by Bhanita Das she won India’s Best Child Artist award for her role, is inspired to form a band overcoming ridicule, poverty and scorn. Never veering into sentimentality Rima Das’ film is inspiring in its evocation of childish fortitude. Screened as part of the Birmingham Indian Film Festival the screening will be followed by a Q&A with Rima Das herself.
Thu 28 Jun 7pm at mac, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH £9 macbirmingham.co.uk
Eaten By Lions (dir: Jason Wingard, 2018, cert 12A) + Director Q&A
This sunny road trip from Bradford to Blackpool is an hilarious adaptation of Wingard’s own short film, Going to Mecca. Following the unfortunate demise of their mother and one father, the film’s title is a clue, half brother’s Pete and Omar head to England’s seaside capital in search of Omar’s estranged father. It’s gloriously silly and uniquely English fun littered with wonderful cameos including Johnny Vegas, Kevin Eldon and Asim Chaudhry. Screened as part of the Birmingham Indian Film Festival the screening will be followed by a Q&A with Wingard.
Fri 29 Jun 6pm at mac, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH £9 macbirmingham.co.uk
Rocky Horror Picture Show (dir: Jim Sharman, 1975, cert 15) outdoor screening
“Prepare the transit beam,” it’s time to dig out the suspenders, basque and high heels. The greatest B-movie musical of all time is screening outdoors at Digbeth’s all new cinema space. Tim Curry is uproariously camp as alien transvestite Frank-n-Furter, creating a perfect male creature and encouraging copious bed hopping between his sexually repressed guests. Kitsch with a thousand capital Ks. Screened outdoors and underneath the Digbeth arches.
Fri 29 Jun 7pm at The Archway, Floodgate Street, Birmingham B5 5SR £10 ticketlist.co.uk
The Jungle Book (dir: Wolfgang Reitherman, 1967, cert U)
Really needs no introduction and we’re pretty certain most people have seen it umpteen times but have you seen it on a big screen? Disney’s 19th film, and the last film Walt worked on before his death, is simply animated perfection, its coterie of pitch perfect characters, songs and crisp dialogue is still as beguiling as Mowgli’s ascent to manhood is inevitable. Now ‘come on, Baggy! Get with the beat!’
Sat 30 Jun 2pm at Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
8 1/2 (dir: Federico Fellini, 1963, cert 15)
Fellini exquisitely takes a hammer to reality in the sexy existential Bella Confusione of 8 1/2, a daringly surreal masterpiece from one of cinema’s most extravagant visionaries. So confusing to contemporary audiences, in one Italian town the movie’s projectionists were attacked. Marcello Mastroianni is simply irresistible as the stunted film director Guido, struggling to make his new film and sinking into ever deeper bouts of unhinged fantasy. Picked at by critics, philosophers and theorists for decades, just plug in your eyeballs and enjoy one of the greatest spectacles cinema has to offer.
Sun 1 Jul 2pm at Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
Water (dir: Deepa Mehta, 2005, cert 12A)
Set in British occupied India of 1938, Mehta’s incredibly beautiful meditation on the plight of widows subjected to the vagaries of ancient religious texts that ascribed them the status of disposable and useless, without a husband conferring value on their lives. It’s a story that led to real life threats and the removal of the production from India to Sri Lanka over safety concerns. There is an elegant poignance throughout Mehta’s superbly realised vision that is unforgettable.
Sun 1 Jul 7pm at Cafe Ort, 500-504 Moseley Rd, Birmingham B12 9AH £5 www.facebook.com
Published on: Fri 25 May 2018