This week’s picks are by Jim Laycock aka Vis-a-Vis Film – a writer/blogger based in Manchester.
Ignore the naysayers, cinema is alive and well! On top of the usual dozens of outstanding film events nationwide, this week feels like an especially triumphant one for independent cinema, as A SMALL CINEMA: LIVERPOOL opens it’s doors for the first time this weekend.
What began a couple of months ago as an empty room and a hatful of dreams has seen both the artistic & wider community pool together skills, expertise and resources to physically build a working, independent cinema…from scratch. Anyone who has been following their progress on social media over the past few weeks will have an idea of the sheer scale of the job these guys had on their hands. An incredible feat that shows just what can be achieved when a community comes together.
With this in mind…my Top 5 for this week celebrates the renegades, the bloody minded & out right trailblazers.
17/03/2015 – 06:00 pm
Open Eye Gallery – 19 Mann Island, Liverpool, Liverpool Waterfront, L3 1BP
Showing as part of their excellent ‘Golden Age of Japanese Cinema’ season (Imamura’s Brechtian masterpiece PIGS & BATTLESHIPS is essential viewing next week), GOOD MORNING is a wryly humorous gem from the latter period of the immeasurably influential Yasujiro Ozu’s career. A riff on his silent classic ‘I Was Born..But’, two young brothers take a vow of silence when their parents refuse to buy a TV set. A charming comedy laced with frank insight into the challenges facing an ordinary family in an ever-changing post-war Japan.
19/03/2015 – 08:15 pm
St Clements Church – St Clements Road/High Lane, Chorlton cum Hardy,Manchester ,M21 9JF
This was a staple in most critics/audience end of year lists in 2014 and anybody familiar with the melancholic beauty of Pawlikowski’s film would find it hard to deny its worthy of the praise.
Zal/Lenczewski’s stunning black & white photography needs to be seen on the big screen. If you missed it first time round, here’s your chance!
20/03/2015 – 06:00 pm
The Electric Cinema – 47 Station Street, Birmingham, B5 4DY
Whilst most of the talk around this years awards season centred on a similarly titled, groundbreaking portrait of a boy’s transition to adulthood-at the same time -an effervescent filmic examination of adolescence seemed to go under the radar.
Céline Sciamma’s (TOMBOY) film was a big hit on the festival circuit in 2014 but failed to make an impression here in the UK (despite multiple nominations at the French Academy Awards). A rare chance to catch one of the year’s most beloved teen movies.
22/03/2015 – 06:00 pm
Joshua Brooks – 106 Princess St, Manchester, M1 6NG
Every Sunday, come wind or shine the Cultivate lot turn the basement in one of Manchester’s finest bars into a haven for cinema lovers. Plus, it’s always free, with a great crowd and welcoming atmosphere. They’ve shown just about everything in the past few years including silent horror, Czech New Wave, Giallo classics, Fassbinder and essential documentary film.
This week’s double header are two giants of British genre cinema. No prison movie before or since has quite the raw, unflinching power of Alan Clarke’s SCUM. Featuring a young Ray Winstone in an unforgettable performance. After that, the late, great Bob Hoskins in arguably his most iconic role; THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY. THE definitive British gangster movie of the 1980s!
22/03/2015 – 04:00 pm
Liverpool Small Cinema – 59 Victoria St, Liverpool, L1 6DD
One of the greatest documentaries of all-time, from one of French cinema’s most curious & inventive artists. GLEANERS & I is a fascinating insight into the lives of a marginalised section of French society from the origins of “gleaning” to the frank accounts of people living well below the breadline -told in typical Varda fashion; with humour and empathy.
Jim Laycock aka Vis-a-Vis Film is a writer/blogger based in Manchester. Follow him at @visavisfilm
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