Film Club 2013-14 - Timetable Released!

Posted on 14 October 2013

Thrills! Tears! Guffaws! But enough about me - here's the new Film Club timetable.

Film Club starts up again, with a chance to see a great range of movies in our full spec Dolby-certified cinema. Treats include Argo, The Deer Hunter and a Christmas special showing of It's A Wonderful Life.

The full timetable is:

Term One

 

WeekFilmNotes

2

8th  Oct

Argo

Dir. Ben Affleck, 2012, USA, 120 mins

 

Cast: Ben Affleck, John Goodman, Alan Arkin

Ben Affleck’s third effort as director swept the boards at this year’s awards season, including the Oscar for Best Picture. Based on real events, the film depicts a CIA agent’s desperate attempt to rescue six American hostages from Iran by posing as a Hollywood producer scouting locations for a science fiction film. After the critical successes of Gone Baby Gone (2007) and The Town (2010), Argo has cemented Affleck’s reputation as one of America’s most exciting directing talents.

3

15th  Oct

Melancholia

Dir. Lars von Trier, 2011, Denmark/Sweden/France/ Germany, 130 mins

 

Cast: Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Alexander Skarsgård

Unfortunately overshadowed by its director’s controversial comments at the Cannes film festival, Melancholia ranks as one of Lars von Trier’s most startling achievements. Two sisters find their already strained relationship placed under further pressure when a mysterious planet named Melancholia threatens to collide with Earth. One of the most visually striking films of recent years, Melancholia is an utterly distinctive work from one of Europe’s most provocative filmmakers.

4

22nd  Oct

Drive

Dir. Nicolas Winding Refn, 2011, USA, 100 mins

 

Cast: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Albert Brooks

After Only God Forgives (2013) polarised both critics and audiences, this is an opportunity to revisit the first collaboration between director Nicolas Winding Refn and Ryan Gosling. A mysterious Hollywood stuntman who moonlights as a getaway driver lands himself in trouble when he comes to the aid of a vulnerable single mother and her young son. With its hyper-stylised blend of violence and music, Drive is the epitome of 21st-century cinematic cool.

5

29th  Oct

Halloween

Dir. John Carpenter, 1978, USA, 91 mins

 

Cast: Jamie Lee Curtis, Donald Pleasence, Nancy Loomis

 

With October 31st just around the corner, Halloween remains the gold-standard for slasher films. A psychotic murderer, institutionalised since childhood for the murder of his sister, escapes and stalks a bookish teenage girl and her friends. Meanwhile his doctor pursues him in a desperate attempt to prevent him from striking again. Ignore the lamentable sequels - Halloween is one of the most terrifying horror films ever made and Michael Myers one of cinema’s greatest bogeymen.

6

5th Nov

 

Aguirre, the Wrath of God

Dir. Werner Herzog, 1972, West Germany, 93 mins

 

Cast: Klaus Kinski, Cecilia Rivera, Ruy Guerra

The first of five collaborations between legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog and the volatile actor Klaus Kinski, Aguirre is one of the outstanding achievements of German cinema. In the 16th-century, the ruthless and insane Don Lope de Aguirre leads a Spanish expedition into the Andes in search of the fabled El Dorado. Herzog’s exploration of insanity and the fragility of civilisation had a profound influence on Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now (1979).

7

12th Nov

 

Some Like It Hot

Dir. Billy Wilder, 1959, USA, 120 mins

 

Cast: Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon

One of the greatest comedies ever made, Some Like It Hot continues to delight audiences with its heady mixture of wit, farce and bawdy humour. When two Chicago musicians accidentally witness a gangland shooting, they board a train to Florida dressed as Josephine and Daphne, the two newest members of an all-girl jazz band! Featuring career-best performances from Monroe, Lemmon and Curtis, Some Like It Hot is a joy from beginning to end.

8

19th Nov

Holy Motors

Dir. Leos Carax, 2012, France/Germany, 115 mins

 

Cast: Denis Lavant, Edith Scob, Kylie Minogue

One of the most critically acclaimed films of recent years, Holy Motors has been described as a ‘batsqueak of genius, dishevelment and derangement’. The mysterious Mr. Oscar is chauffeured around Paris and is required to play a number of different characters despite the fact that there appears to be nobody filming his performances. A love letter to cinema, Holy Motors is a ‘once seen, never forgotten’ experience.

9

26th Nov

Midnight Cowboy

Dir. John Schlesinger, 1969, USA, 113 mins

 

Cast: Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voigt, Sylvia Miles

This enduring classic is one of the key works of New Hollywood in which a generation of exciting American filmmakers (including Coppola, Scorsese and Spielberg) emerged during the 60s and 70s. In Schlesinger’s acclaimed drama a naïve male prostitute and his sickly friend struggle to survive on the mean streets of New York City. To date, Midnight Cowboy remains the only X-rated film ever to win the Oscar for Best Picture.

10

3rd Dec

It’s a Wonderful Life

Dir. Frank Capra, 1946, USA, 130 mins

 

Cast: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore

What better way to round off the term than by screening the ultimate Christmas film? George Bailey, a man who has given up his dreams in order to help others, is pushed to the brink of suicide on Christmas Eve. Will the intervention of his guardian angel be enough to convince him that life is worth living? Despite performing poorly at the box office upon its release, It’s a Wonderful Life has since become an indelible part of Christmas for families around the world.

 

Term Two

 

Week

Film

Notes

2

14th Jan

Sightseers

Dir. Ben Wheatley, 2012, UK, 88 mins

 

Cast: Alice Lowe, Steve Oram, Kenneth Hadley

This jet-black comedy confirms Ben Wheatley’s status as one of the most promising directors working in British cinema today. When Chris takes his girlfriend Tina on a caravanning holiday, what begins as an innocent excursion soon descends into a nightmare involving multiple homicides. With an ingenious script penned by its two leads, Sightseers is a delicious blend of comedy of embarrassment and unabashed horror.

3

21st  Jan

 

The Deer Hunter

Dir. Michael Cimino, 1978, UK/USA, 182 mins

 

Cast: Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken, Meryl Streep

The winner of five Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director, The Deer Hunter ranks alongside Renoir’s La Grande Illusion (1937) as one of the greatest anti-war films ever made. Cimino’s film offers an in-depth examination of how the Vietnam war affected the lives of people in a small Pennsylvania mining town. The Deer Hunter features outstanding performances from De Niro, Streep and Walken.

4

28th Jan

La Règle du Jeu

Dir. Jean Renoir, 1939, France, 110 mins

 

Cast: Marcel Dalio, Nora Gregor, Paulette Dubost

In Sight & Sound’s 2012 poll, La Règle du Jeu was voted the fourth greatest film ever made. In its depiction of a party being held in a lavish country house, Renoir’s film serves as a delightful satire of the French upper classes, combining melodrama with farce, realism with fantasy and comedy with tragedy. Banned by the French government on its original release, Renoir’s film has been a profound influence on later films such as Robert Altman’s country house murder mystery Gosford Park (2001).

5

4th Feb

Shame

Dir. Steve McQueen, 2011, UK, 101 mins

 

Cast: Michael Fassbender, Carey Mulligan, Nicole Beharie

The second collaboration between British director Steve McQueen and the electrifying Michael Fassbender, Shame is a riveting drama about sexual addiction. Set in contemporary New York, a handsome advertising executive indulges his desires with a series of empty encounters, until his life is disrupted by the arrival of his emotionally unstable younger sister. Dark, challenging and provocative, Shame explores the essential human need for intimacy.

6

11th Feb

Dr. Strangelove

Dir. Stanley Kubrick, 1964, USA/UK, 95 mins

 

Cast: Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Sterling Hayden

One of the blackest comedies ever made, Dr. Strangelove satirises the paranoia surrounding nuclear annihilation during the 1960s. When an insane general orders an attack on the Soviet Union, it’s left up to the American President and his advisors to recall the bombers in order to avoid a nuclear apocalypse. Peter Sellers excels in three different roles, playing a British RAF officer, the American President and the demented scientist (and former Nazi) Dr. Strangelove.

7

18th  Feb

Talk to Her

Dir. Pedro Almodόvar, 2002, Spain, 112 mins

 

Cast: Javier Cámara, Darío Grandinetti, Leonor Watling

One of Almodόvar’s greatest films, Talk to Her explores the intertwining relationships between four characters united in a hospital ward. Lydia is a famous matador who lies in a coma. Her lover, Marco, awaits her recovery while contemplating the significance of their last conversation. Marco is encouraged to communicate with Lydia by a male nurse who, it transpires, has a hidden agenda. This complex, multi-layered film won multiple international awards upon its release.    

 

8

25th Feb

There Will Be Blood

Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson, 2007, USA, 158 mins

 

Cast: Daniel Day-Lewis, Paul Dano, Ciarán Hinds

A visually stunning film which charts the rise and fall of Daniel Plainview, a ruthless oil prospector whose lust for money and power becomes all-consuming. Running the course of thirty years, Plainview’s story becomes a meditation on the dark underbelly of the American dream. Daniel Day-Lewis turns in a tour-de-force performance which ranks alongside the greatest in American cinema.

9

4th March

Tokyo Story

Dir. Yasujirȏ Ozu, 1953, Japan, 136 mins

 

Cast: Chishû Ryû, Chieko Higashiyama, Setsuko Hara

Tokyo Story tells the tale of an aging couple who travel to Tokyo to visit their grown children. This potentially uninspiring premise is rendered into a thought-provoking study of the cultural gap between one generation and the next and the disparity between rural and city life. Ozu’s film is regularly ranked as one of the greatest in cinema history, and endures as an affecting portrait of post-war Japanese life.

    

10

11th March

The Adventures of Robin Hood

Dir. Michael Curtiz & William Keighley, 1938, USA, 102 mins

 

Cast: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone

One of the greatest swashbucklers of them all, The Adventures of Robin Hood tells the time-honoured tale of the world’s favourite criminal. Filmed in glorious Technicolor, Errol Flynn’s incarnation of the title character adds a level of swagger and derring-do which eclipses any of the subsequent versions. This is classical Hollywood cinema at its most lavish and entertaining.

 

Term Three

 

Week

Film

 

Notes

1

22nd April

Moonrise Kingdom

Dir. Wes Anderson, 2012, USA, 94 mins

 

Cast: Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward, Bruce Willis

Sam and Suzy are childhood friends who make a secret expedition to a cove they dub ‘Moonrise Kingdom’. In a style typical of director Wes Anderson, the youngsters encounter a range of idiosyncratic characters who both help and hinder their progress. The unexpected result of their adventure pits Sam and Suzy against their parents and the adult world at large. Charming, witty and heartfelt, this is Anderson’s greatest film since Rushmore (1998).

2

29th April

Days of Heaven

Dir. Terrence Malick, 1978, USA, 94 mins

 

Cast: Richard Gere, Brooke Adams, Sam Shepard

A Chicago labourer is forced to leave town after he is wrongly implicated in the death of a colleague. He flees to the Texas Panhandle with his girlfriend and the young couple masquerade as brother and sister in order to find work. This ruse is complicated, however, by the romantic attentions of their new boss. Malick channels the imagery of Edward Hopper in a film that is widely regarded to be one of the most beautiful ever committed to celluloid.

3

6th May

Last Year at Marienbad

Dir. Alain Resnais, 1961, France/Italy, 94 mins

 

Cast: Giorgio Albertazzi, Delphine Seyrig, Sacha Pitoëff

This is quite simply one of the most enigmatic and mesmerising films you’re likely to see. Last Year at Marienbad takes an ostensibly simple case of mistaken identity and weaves an intricate, dreamlike plot around two characters known only as ‘the man’ and ‘the woman’. The question of what, if anything, took place between the two in the titular Czech town forms the core of this cinematic puzzle.

    

4

13th May

Hud

Dir. Martin Ritt, 1963, USA, 112 mins

 

Cast: Paul Newman, Melvyn Douglas, Patricia Neal

Paul Newman plays Hud, the arrogant and self-centred son of a wealthy rancher, Homer Bannon. The film focuses on the inter-generational clash of personalities between the two men and the dire consequences of a foot-and-mouth outbreak. The film’scontemporary setting allows Hud to simultaneously rework and subvert many of the tropes of the classic Western. 

5

20th May

 

In the Mood for Love

Dir. Kar Wai Wong, 2000, Hong Kong/France, 98 mins

 

Cast: Maggie Cheung, Tony Leung, Siu Ping Lam

 

Set in 1960s Hong Kong, In the Mood for Love tells the story of a male journalist and female secretary who move into the same apartment building on the same day. Both are married to absent spouses and lead lives devoid of passion. As their friendship develops they become subject to the suspicions of their neighbours which triggers a sequence of life-changing events. One of the most admired films of the previous decade, this film has been favourably compared to the earlier British classic Brief Encounter (1945).   

 

6

27th May

 

Naked 

Dir. Mike Leigh, 1993, UK, 131 mins

 

Cast: David Thewlis, Lesley Sharp, Katrin Cartlidge

 

Arguably Mike Leigh’s greatest film, Naked represents a departure from the more gentle tone of his work in the 1980s. Johnny is intelligent and eloquent but also deeply embittered and cruel. He flees his native Manchester after sexually assaulting a woman, seeking out a former girlfriend in London. His dissatisfaction with life leads to a protracted journey through London’s down-and-out communities. Thewlis’s magnificent performance won him the award for Best Actor at Cannes.

 

7

3rd June

 

Night on Earth

Dir. Jim Jarmusch, 1991, France/UK/Germany/ USA/Japan, 129 mins

 

Cast: Winona Ryder, Gena Rowlands, Giancarlo Esposito

 

In Night on Earth, Jim Jarmusch applies the vignette formula to his filmmaking for the first time. Five separate stories are told on the same night in Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Rome and Helsinki. The theme which unites the stories is their setting: the interior of a taxi cab. The interactions which ensue swing between the hilarious (Rome) and the tragic (Helsinki) and are all underwritten by Jarmusch’s idiosyncratic style.  

 

8

10th June

 

L’Avventura

Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960, Italy, 143 mins

 

Cast: Monica Vitti, Gabriele Ferzetti, Lea Massari

 

L’Avventura focuses on the disappearance of a young woman while on a Mediterranean boating trip. During their search, her lover and best friend realise that they are falling in love. Acclaimed for its composition, narrative pacing and character development, L’Avventura was followed by La Notte (1961) and L’Eclisse (1962) to form a trilogy which explored Antonioni’s ideas on the contemporary human condition.

 

9

17th June

Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Dir. Steven Spielberg, 1977, USA, 137 mins

 

Cast: Richard Dreyfuss, François Truffaut, Teri Garr

Spielberg marshals all the special effects at his disposal to bring outer space to the big screen for the first time in his career. Long missing planes are found in the Arizona desert, UFOs appear in Indiana and several unsuspecting citizens begin to have close encounters. This blockbuster remains a visually arresting film which harnesses a sense of childlike wonder in the way only Spielberg knows how.

10

24th June

To Be or Not to Be

Dir. Ernst Lubitsch, 1942, USA, 99 mins

 

Cast: Carole Lombard, Jack Benny, Robert Stack

 

Considered by many to be Ernst Lubitsch’s funniest film, To Be or Not to Be chronicles the adventures of a Polish theatre company before and during the Nazi occupation. Husband and wife thespians Joseph and Maria use their guile and enthusiasm to disrupt the occupying army’s activities and eventually plan a daring escape mission. This film serves as a prime example of how comedy can be successfully applied to the most grave of circumstances.