Flatpack have curated a wonderful season of Birmingham on the big screen and we wish we could watch it all. Keep an eye on Twitter for updates on what is screening and make sure you get along to as many of these free events as possible, you really have no excuse.

Mitchell & Kenyon in Birmingham. Amazing scenes of Birmingham life in the early 1900s, filmed by Blackburn company Mitchell and Kenyon to help drum up an audience for local film shows. Includes workers leaving Tangye’s factory in Smethwick, a boisterous crowd at the athletics in Edgbaston, and Joseph Chamberlain at Highbury Hall. Half-hour compilation screening repeated throughout the day.
Thu Sep 8 – Sun 18 Sep at mac, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Birmingham’s Film Knight. Sir Michael Balcon was the most prominent and influential British filmmaker of the 20th century. He produced over 250 films, gave Alfred Hitchcock his first film role, and in 1948 he was knighted for his contribution to British cinema. He was also a born and bred Brummie. Birmingham’s Film Knight, curated by Roger Shannon (Edge Hill University), examines Balcon’s life and career through a Birmingham lens – from his early filmmaking adventures with Birmingham cinema pioneers, Oscar Deutsch and Victor Saville, to his work at the iconic Ealing Studios.
Mon 12 Sep – Fri 21 Oct at BCU Parkside, 5 Cardigan Street, Birmingham B4 7BD flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Vivid Archive. A special preview from archives spanning 40 years of media arts and culture in Birmingham. Focusing on the late 1970s-1980s, a pivotal era of cultural change, this short programme explores the social, political and cultural context of Vivid Projects’ roots and antecedents. The preview includes screenings of works by members of Birmingham Film and Video Workshop, print archives, trade union cartoons and more. Come and explore the vibrant alternative culture of the city via grassroots activism, protest and the emerging teen voice.
Fri 16 Sep – Sat 17 Sep at Vivid Projects, 158 Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RS flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Giro: Is This The Modern World? This resonant piece of punk TV from Birmingham Film and Video Workshop was made in collaboration with a group
 of unemployed young Telfordians (the Dead Honest Soul Searchers), as they try and find answers to questions about the dole system, wage levels and what the future might hold.
Fri 16 Sep, 2pm at mac Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Tales from the Cut. Roundhouse Birmingham is at the heart of the city’s canal network and was originally designed as stabling for horses as part of a competition won by the famed architect WH Ward, its distinctive horseshoe shape becoming integral to the ‘city of 1,000 trades’. The Grade II* listed building, which is owned by the Canal & River Trust, will be restored over the coming years, in partnership with the National Trust and with the help of the Heritage Lottery Fund. This one-off event is a rare opportunity to take a peek inside.
Sat 17 Sep – Sun 18 Sep at Roundhouse, Sheepcote Stret, Ladywood, Birmingham B16 8AE flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Paradise Lost: History in the Un-Making. Filmmaker and wanderer Andy Howlett presents a work-in-progress investigation into the untimely demise of John Madin’s Central Library. In this free-form video essay, Andy uses exploratory walking as a means to interrogate the built environment, teasing out the forgotten narratives and faded dreams embedded in the Brutalist architecture in an attempt to work out what went wrong with yesterday’s future.
Tue 20 Sep, 7pm at BOM, 1 Dudley Street, Birmingham B5 4EG flatpackfestival.org.uk/

LIMELIGHT #5. Project Birmingham’s fifth edition of Limelight (events promoting the city’s music and arts scene) takes place at The GAP Arts Project, a space run for and by young people. We’re joining forces for an evening of film, art, food, and music all inspired by Birmingham, and Flatpack will cover the screening element with a selection of short films all made by young people under 25 from Brum. Films will be repeated at various times throughout the evening.
Sat 8 Oct, 7pm at GAP, The Jubilee Centre, 130 Pershore Street, Birmingham B5 6ND flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Bhaji on the Beach. This gentle comedy follows a multi-generational group of Asian women on an outing from their Birmingham community centre to Blackpool. A breakthrough hit which picked up a BAFTA nomination, Bhaji on the Beach launched the careers of both director Gurinder Chadha (who started out as a roving reporter for Radio WM) and co-writer Meera Syal.
Mon 10 Oct, 11am at Ashiana Community Project, 25 Grantham Road, Sparkbrook, Birmingham B11 1LU flatpackfestival.org.uk/

Thu 8 Sep - Mon 10 Oct
Giles Logan
Published on:
Sat 17 Sep 2016