Persona (dir: Ingmar Bergman, 1966, cert 15)
Critics have flip flopped over the genius of Ingmar Bergman’s exquisite psychological drama Persona but whilst opinions are fluid, the towering perfection of the Swedish director’s film is undeniable. Bergman challenges the audience like no other filmmaker ever, identity and duality are dizzyingly explored with a ruthless precision that respects but assails the viewer, Bibi Andersson and Liv Ullmann are by turns unnerving, psychopathic and indecipherable as nurse and mute actress. Film as art has never been more poignantly realised than in Bergman’s masterpiece, watch it on the big screen, then go home and watch it again and again.
Tue 15 May 8pm at Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
The Killing of Sister George (dir: Robert Aldrich, 1968, cert 15)
Reviled by critics, censors and local councils on its release in 1968, Robert Aldrich’s adaptation of Frank Marcus’ stage play added more sex and toned down the comedic elements of the original, which itself was not particularly well received. The film has subsequently grown in reputation for its fearless representation of Lesbian themes and lifestyle, an approach that proved so shocking to contemporary audiences The New York Times commented, ‘sets a special kind of low in the treatment of sex’. Beryl Reid excels as the ageing, failing TV star George, riddled with alcoholism and foul moods.
Tue 15 May 7pm at Birmingham LGBT, 38-40 Holloway Circus, Birmingham B1 1EQ Free www.journeyfilmclub.co.uk
My Beautiful Laundrette (dir: Stephen Frears, 1985, cert 15) + curry & vigil
Celebrate the groundbreaking Hanif Kureshi scripted film, exploring homosexuality and racism under the horrible eighties yolk of Thatcher’s Britain, and International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia with a special screening preceded by a vigil then curry at Holloway’s Café.
Thu 17 May 6pm at Birmingham LGBT, 38-40 Holloway Circus, Birmingham B1 1EQ Free www.eventbrite.co.uk
Revenge (dir: Coralie Fargeat, 2017, cert 18) + discussion
Screened as part of Birds’ Eye View’s new 4 film/5-city Reclaim The Frame Influencers project which seeks to expose audiences to films by women. Fargeat’s unsettling and violently gory rape revenge thriller takes familiar exploitation movie tropes and expertly usurps them in a wildly bloody flourish. Stylish and absolutely drowning in claret its proposition as a feminist parable may be debatable but its relentlessly shuddering violence is without compare.
Thu 17 May 7.30pm at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £5 veezi.com
The Sound of Music (dir: Robert Wise, 1965, cert U) + dinner
Nearly three hours of Rodgers and Hammerstein musical magic waltzing through the vagaries of the Third Reich in thirties Austria, as Julie Andrews’ tuneful governess Maria takes on the extended Von Trapp family. In addition to all the musical shenanigans dinner is also available, chicken, pork, vegetarian or vegan.
Fri 18 May 7pm at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £30 film only £5 veezi.com
Filmworker (dir: Tony Zierra, 2017, cert 15)
When Leon Vitali starred as the vicious stepson Lord Bullingdon in Stanley Kubrick’s peerless drama Barry Lyndon, he forged a working relationship with the esteemed director that saw him give up acting and become the maverick filmmaker’s right hand man until Kubrick’s death in 1999. Zierra’s fascinating study of that relationship is a compelling insight into friendship and the unique working practices of a directorial genius.
Sat 19 May to Thu 24 May at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £10 veezi.com
Trainspotting (dir: Danny Boyle, 1996, cert 18) & T2 Trainspotting (dir : Danny Boyle, 2017, cert 15)
Enjoy the sequel and the seminal original that scorched through the cinematic landscape in a coruscating blitz of drugs and violence some twenty years ago. Trainspotting is a dizzying spectacle of addiction and anomie that tapped into a subculture too squeamish for some with an unwavering swagger, revolutionising the way music was used in film its soundtrack is as socially piquant as the lives of Renton et al, a gloriously riotous piece of relevant cinema, altogether now; shouting, lager lager lager lager.
Sat 19 May 6pm at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £10 veezi.com
Withnail and I (dir: Bruce Robinson, 1987, cert 15) + charity auction at Electric or with brunch at The Mockingbird
Probably one of the most quotable films ever and a staple of the UK student film canon since it’s release. However, it’s not just uproarious high jinks as our heroes go on holiday by mistake. It’s actually a subtly nuanced tragedy as the youthful I has to decide whether it’s time to take a leap into adulthood and the future. The London Zoo ending still brings a tear to our eye. Anyway, here’s our favourite quote, ‘I feel like a pig shat in my head’. The screening at The Electric from Withnail Brum features an auction of Withnail merchandise in aid of Sifa Fireside, Sunday’s event at The Mockingbird is available with several lunch options, all of which include unlimited prosecco.
Sat 19 May 2.30pm at The Electric, Station Street, Birmingham B5 4DY £10.50 www.theelectric.co.uk
Sun 20 May 11am at The Mockingbird, The Custard Factory, Gibb St, Birmingham B9 4AA £29.95 w/ brunch £3 film only veezi.com
Published on: Thu 12 Apr 2018