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The All New Cinema Diet #16

The All New Cinema Diet #16

QUAD Cinema Programmer Adam Marsh brings you another seven days of fantastic film viewing options.

This week’s eclectic mix of titles are pulled from outdoors (Summer Nights Film Festival), at QUAD and BFI Player, with free options available through BBC iPlayer, All 4 and Rakuten TV. 

See you at the movies! 

Adam J. Marsh

Day One – QUAD 

The Story Of The Three Day Pass 

See the film at QUAD. Book tickets here

Melvin Van Peebles’s edgy and romantic first feature could never have been made in America. Unable to break into a segregated Hollywood, Van Peebles decamped to France, taught himself French and wrote a number of books in French, one of which, La Permission, would become his stylistically innovative feature debut The Story Of A Three Day Pass. Turner (Harry Baird), an African American soldier stationed in France, is granted a promotion and a three-day leave and heads to Paris, where he finds whirlwind romance with a white Parisian woman  (Nicole Berger) - but what happens to their love when his furlough is over? 

Channelling the brash exuberance of the French New Wave, Van Peebles commentates on France’s attitudes about race at the time and laid the foundation for the scorched-earth cinematic revolution he would unleash just a few years later with Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song

Presented as part of Cinema Rediscovered on Tour, a Watershed project with support from the BFI awarding funds from The National Lottery. 

Annette 

See the film at QUAD. Book tickets here.

In Leos Carax's (Holy Motors) musical melodrama Annette, a seemingly perfect couple - a provocative stand-up comedian, Henry (Adam Driver) and internationally renowned opera singer Ann (Marion Cotillard) - live glamorous lives in Los Angeles. However, when they welcome their daughter Annette into the world, her mysterious gifts will change their lives forever. 

With story and music by Ron and Russell Mael of Sparks (the focus of Edgar Wright's recent documentary The Sparks Brothers) this vibrant musical is an exhilarating and audacious journey of love, passion, tragedy and fame. Opening film at the Cannes Film Festival this year 

New Order 

See the film at QUAD. Book tickets here

A shocking and provocative depiction of class warfare in contemporary Mexico. When the lavish upper-class wedding of two affluent citizens is suddenly interrupted by violent rioters who take their house by siege, it soon becomes apparent that this seemingly random attack is part of a nationwide working-class uprising. 

As seen through the eyes of the sympathetic young bride and the servants who work for - and against - her wealthy family, it breathlessly traces the collapse of one political system as a more harrowing replacement arises.  

Winner of the 2020 Venice Film Festival Grand Jury Prize, this is a gripping dystopian drama that dares us not to look away. With parallels drawn to Bong Joon-ho's Parasite, Franco's latest is a terrifying edge-of-your-seat commentary on the haves and have-nots of modern-day Mexico. 

"... a brutally unforgiving attack on Mexico's super-rich ★★★★" - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian 

In The Mood For Love  

See the film at QUAD. Book tickets here.

Wong Kar-wai reunites with Tony Leung (Chungking Express) and pairs him with Hong Kong acting royalty Maggie Cheung whilst shifting his focus to Hong Kong in the 1960s. Leung and Cheung play neighbours who discover their spouses are having an affair. The two spend an increasing amount of time together but resolve to not join their partners in infidelity. Featuring exquisite costumes, a haunting score and the wonderful cinematography, all adding up to a highly seductive concoction that lives long in the memory.  

Rapturously elegant and deeply sexy in a deliciously restrained way, Wong Kar-wai's In the Mood for Love is one of the most romantic movies I have ever seen” - New York Post  

Screening in a new 4K restoration, supervised and approved by Wong Kar Wai. 

Day Two – Summer Nights Film Festival 

Mamma Mia 

Belper Rugby Club. Book Tickets here.

Donna (Meryl Streep), an independent hotelier in the Greek islands, is preparing for her daughter’s wedding with the help of two old friends. Meanwhile Sophie, the spirited bride, has a plan. She secretly invites three men from her mother’s past in hope of meeting her real father and having him escort her down the aisle on her big day.  

Blues Brothers  

Belper Rugby Club. Book Tickets here.

After his release from prison, Jake (John Belushi) reunites with his brother, Elwood (Dan Aykroyd) — collectively known as the “Blues Brothers.” Jake’s first task is to save the orphanage the brothers grew up in from closing, by raising $5,000 to pay back taxes. The two are convinced they can earn the money by getting their old band back together. However, after playing several gigs and making a few enemies, including the police, the brothers face daunting odds to deliver the money on time. 

Day Three – BBC iPlayer 

Blue Murder At St. Trinians 

See the film here

With their headmistress under lock and key in her majesty's prison, the St Trinian's girls find themselves under the protection of the army. However, when the sixth form take a fancy to winning a trip to Italy through means fair or foul, the army discover this is one battle they can't win. Let loose in Europe, it is not long before St Trinian's have succeeded in endangering European relations 

The Pure Hell Of St. Trinians 

See the film here

The fourth form monsters' latest trick is their best ever – they have burned down St Trinian’s school! As the girls stand trial, the police breathe a sigh of relief, but miraculously the judge's infatuation with a student means the school is freed. For the authorities, it means a new reign of terror as the girls of St Trinian’s regroup with gleeful anticipation. 

Steve McQueen: The Man And Le Mans 

See the film here

Gripping documentary that goes on a nerve-tingling ride with one of the greatest film stars of all time. In 1970, Steve McQueen set out to make ‘the ultimate racing movie’. It would be called Le Mans. He would lose his marriage, close friendships and control of his film, and risk lives in the process. This is a story of obsession, betrayal and vindication, as a superstar risked everything in the pursuit of his dream. 

Election 

See the film here. 

Nebraska. Infuriatingly determined Tracy Flick is sure to be her high school student council’s president until teacher Jim McAllister interferes, and the contest quickly gets messy, along with Jim’s private life. Scathing comedy from the writer and director of Sideways and The Descendants

Day Four – BBC iPlayer 

I Remember Mama 

See the film here. 

Saga about a family of Norwegian immigrants struggling to get by in San Francisco at the turn of the century. At the heart of the penniless family is the warm, caring figure of the mother, Mama Hanson, who is surrounded by a variety of engaging and loveable relatives and friends. 

The Titfield Thunderbolt 

See the film here. 

Ealing comedy about a group of villagers and their battle to preserve the local railway line by running it themselves, an enterprise that goes well until they are sabotaged in a midnight raid by the rival bus company. Undaunted, they wheel out the Thunderbolt, an ancient exhibit in the village museum. Now all that remains is to put on a satisfactory run for the stickler of a government inspector. 

Porridge 

See the film here

Comedy. Detained at Her Majesty's pleasure, cellmates Fletcher (Ronnie Barker)  and Godber (Richard Beckinsale) become unwilling accomplices to an escape attempt in this cinema version of the popular BBC comedy 

The Bling Ring 

See the film here. 

Crime drama inspired by a true story. Curiosity leads to crime as fashion fan Marc helps classmates Rebecca and Nicki find LA homes of celebrities who are away – lax security enabling their brand-obsessed band to swipe whatever they fancy. 

Day Five – All 4 

Memory: The Origins Of Alien 

See the film here

Alexander O. Philippe directs this documentary which deconstructs and analyses Ridley Scott's classic horror from 1979, 'Alien'. The documentary breaks down the psychology behind the movie and the inspiration for its themes, including mythologies, comic books and artwork. 

Cal 

See the film here. 

Helen Mirren and John Lynch star in this romantic drama adapted by Bernard MacLaverty from his own novel. Cal (Lynch), an out-of-work Northern Irishman, reluctantly becomes involved with the IRA. At the same time he begins to yearn for local librarian Marcella (Mirren) whose policeman husband was killed by the IRA in an attack that Cal was the driver for... 

Hallam Foe 

See the film here.

Bittersweet drama starring Jamie Bell. Hallam Foe (Bell) is almost over the sudden death of his mother when he begins to suspect that his beautiful stepmother, Verity (Claire Forlani), may have had a hand in her death. After a confrontation with Verity, Hallam escapes to Edinburgh. With no money and no friends, he finds his tree-top skills well suited to the rooftops of the city, where he lives ferally, attempting to avoid the perils of the streets below and becoming obsessed with a gorgeous girl (Sophia Myles) who happens to look just like his mother. 

Dog Don’t Wear Pants 

See the film here. 

The story follows Juha - a successful neurosurgeon - who develops an unexpected but powerful connection with a dominatrix named Mona, following a tragic event in his life that has left him emotionally paralysed. His dangerous addiction to suffocation is reciprocated by Mona leading them both down a wild and crazy path towards emotional enlightenment. Dogs Don't Wear Pants is a darkly humorous story of loss, love and the sweet pain of being.  

Day Six – BFI Player 

After Love 

See the film here. 

Grappling with the unexpected death of her husband (Nasser Memarzia), Mary Hussain is tidying his things in their Dover home when she stumbles upon a secret connection he had across the Channel, in Calais. Armed with just a bag and his cell phone, she sets off to uncover the truth. Beautifully directed by Khan and abetted by sensitive performances from Scanlan, Nathalie Richard (Jeune et Jolie) and impressive youngster Talid Ariss, this is a drama of real insight about two women, living just 20 miles apart, who are separated by cultural difference and yet share a connection. A remarkable debut, whose delicate tenderness is a testament to the quality of its writing and performances, by its close you will feel you truly know these people. 

Cinema Paradiso 

See the film here. 

A director recalls his childhood in Sicily after World War Two – as a boy, he developed a life-long passion for film at the local ‘Cinema Paradiso’, where he struck up a friendship with the projectionist. Tornatore’s Oscar®-winning film is a nostalgic love letter to cinema, with a touching performance from Philippe Noiret and a fittingly elegiac score by Ennio Morricone and his son Andrea. 

Theorem  

See the film here. 

A handsome, enigmatic stranger (Terence Stamp) arrives at a bourgeois household in Milan and successively seduces the son, the mother, the daughter and the father, not forgetting the maid. Then, as abruptly and mysteriously as he arrived, he departs. 

In this cool, richly complex and provocative political allegory, director Pier Paolo Pasolini uses his schematic plot to explore family dynamics, the intersection of class and sex, and the nature of different sexualities. After winning a prize at the Venice Festival, Theorem was subsequently banned on an obscenity charge, but Pasolini later won an acquittal on grounds of the film's ‘high artistic value’. A visually ravishing film, with superb performances from all the cast, it also has a brilliantly eclectic soundtrack - with music ranging from Mozart and Morricone to the natural sound of chirping birds. 

Drive 

See the film here. 

Ryan Gosling plays the stunt double leading another life as a getaway driver in Nicolas Winding Refn's timeless cult thriller. Driver (Gosling) spends his days as a stunt double and his nights as a getaway man. After falling for his neighbour Irene (Carey Mulligan) he signs on to drive for her ex as he pulls one last, ill-fated job. A film of pure adrenaline, bloodshed, pounding music and breakneck speeds: for fans of Refn's Pusher trilogy, and anyone who likes their action with a side of pensive 80s noir styling. 

Day Seven – Rakuten 

This Boy’s Life  

See the film here. 

All Caroline (Ellen Barkin) wants in the world is to be able to settle down in one place and find a man who will treat both she and her son, Toby (Leonardo DiCaprio), right. She moves to Seattle and finds the seemingly upstanding Dwight Hansen (Robert De Niro), who gives her the feeling of comfort and safety she’s been after. Toby, however, feels differently after spending some time alone with Dwight; though Hansen’s intention is clearly to turn Toby into a well-rounded, well-behaved young man, his methods are both emotionally and physically abusive. 

Hamburger Hill 

See the film here

The men of Bravo Company are facing a battle that's all uphill… up Hamburger Hill. Fourteen war-weary soldiers are battling for a mud-covered mound of earth so named because it chews up soldiers like chopped meat. They are fighting for their country, their fellow soldiers and their lives. War is hell, but this is worse. Hamburger Hill tells it the way it was, the way it really was. It's a raw, gritty and totally unrelenting dramatic depiction of one of the fiercest battles of Vietnam, America's bloodiest war. This happened. Hamburger Hill - war at its worst, men at their best. 

Bound 

See the film here

Caesar (Joe Pantoliano) is a money launderer for the Mob who has just come into possession of two million dollars in cash. His girlfriend, Violet (Jennifer Tilly), begins having an affair with their new neighbour, ex-con Corky (Gina Gershon), and the two women plot to relieve Caesar of his money - by playing on his distrust of fellow mobster Johnnie (Christopher Meloni), the son of Mafia boss Gino Marzzone (Richard Sarafian Jr). 

Blue Steel 

See the film here. 

Megan Turner (Jamie Lee Curtis) is a rookie cop who gets accused of being trigger-happy when she blows away a supermarket robber during her first day on the job. Suspended from duty, Megan finds herself the object of desire for killer Eugene Hunt (Ron Silver), who has stolen the robber's gun from the scene of the crime. What follows is a dangerous game of cat and mouse, in which Megan's life and career both hang in the balance.  to inspire critical thinking of our relationship with digital media.