Raindance Film Festival
Songs of Nick Drake
Claire Denis Masterclass
Sheffield International Documentary Festival
Rough Cut Film Festival
Everyman Expose Present Weapons of Mass Deception
Screen South Information Day
49th BFI london Film Festival
Hertfordshire International Film Festival
The Alternative London Film Festival
Closing Date for 2 Days Later
2 Days Later Horror Shorts
Closing Date for British Animation Awards
RAINDANCE FILM FESTIVAL - 28 September to 9 October
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE OPENING DAYS
of the 13th Raindance Film Festival
London , 28 September - 9 October 2005
A manic-depressive music genius, a sixteen-year-old selling her virginity on eBay, a smash-hit Russian horror, a brutal and controversial British film, France's biggest box-office hit of 2004, and Pete Doherty getting busted by the police.. these are just some of the highlights from the festivals opening days.
The Raindance Film Festival, the UK 's largest independent film festival, enters its thirteenth year tonight with twelve days of unique and extraordinary films that celebrate the best of independent filmmaking from around the globe.
The festival opens with director Jeff Feurzeig's The Devil and Daniel Johnston (Wed 28 Sept 20:00). The winner of this year's Sundance Directors Award, it looks at the roller-coaster life of this manic-depressive genius singer/songwriter whose illness gives him delusions of the devil that haunts him. A compelling portrait of madness, creativity and love, it's one of a kind and not to be missed.
Should you need a recommendation on what to see on Thursday, then take Quentin Tarentino's advice and see Night Watch (Thu 29 Sept 20:00). Writer/director Timur Bekmambetov's stylish horror set in modern-day Moscow presents the timeless war between good and evil, and is based on the best-selling sci-fi novels of Sergei Lukanenko. A domestic smash hit, it was also Russia 's contender for the 2004 foreign language Oscar®. Tarentino said: "if there is only one film you see this year, let this be it." You can't argue with that, can you?
If you plan to see more than one film this year, then Friday's schedule provides lots of indie gems to choose from. There's a British black comedy: Saul Metzsein's Guy X , (Fri 30 Sept 19:00) starring Jason Biggs as a soldier mistakenly posted to an desolate military base in Greenland , where he falls for the commanding officer's girlfriend played by Natascha McElhone. Then there's Antonio Campos' Buy It Now (Fri 30 Sept 21:00). Winner of the Cinefondation award at Cannes , it tells the story of a 16-year-old who, surrounded by a society obsessed with consumerism, decides to auction her virginity on eBay. Ending the night is a British film that's bound to spark impassioned debate: Thomas Clay's controversial The Great Ecstasy Of Robert Carmichael (Fri 30 Sept 22:30). It caused a furor when it was screened at Cannes this year, and its notoriously shocking closing moments will no doubt touch a nerve at Raindance too.
Another unnerving film is The Gingerbread Man (Sat 1 Oct 18:30), following a man whose young daughter is kidnapped. He tracks down the abductor via the internet, then kills him - while his brother films it, documentary-style, to provide a testimony of the event. Bound to be compared to The Blair Witch Project , it in fact feels more realistic and more edgy. Other Saturday highlights include the enthralling police drama 36 Quai des Orfevres (Sat 1 Oct 19:30). Starring renowned French actors Gerard Depardieu and Daniel Auteil as battling policemen, one corrupt and one clean, the film was France 's biggest box office hit of 2004. The Japanese film Canary (Sat 1 Oct 21:30), tells the story of a boy raised by a religious sect who goes in search of his family when the cult disbands after the Tokyo gas attacks. Aum, the religious cult responsible for the actual Sarin attack on the Tokyo subway in 1995, is the subject of Tatsuya Mori's documentary A (Sun 2 Oct 21:00).
Sunday promises to be a bumper day for film buffs. Topical and terrifying is the British thriller, Red Mercury (Sun 2 Oct 13:00). Directed by BAFTA Lifetime Achiever Roy Battersby, and starring Juliet Stevenson, Pete Postelthwaite, and Ron Silver and Stockard Channing from TV's The West Wing , it tells the story of what happens when three young British Muslims in possession of a bomb take over a London restaurant. The film, by Asian writer Farrukh Dhondy, was made before the atrocities of July 7, but its storyline eerily mirrors that dark day.
Don Letts, renowned DJ and former member of Big Audio Dynamite, has written and directed Punk:Attitude (Sun 2 Oct 16:00), a documentary exploring the phenomenon that is punk rock. A stellar soundtrack, insightful commentary from film director Jim Jarmusch, and contributions from inspirational punk figures including Siouxsie Sioux and Tommy Ramone, ensure this film offers a fresh perspective on a sub-culture that defined an era. Letts will attend a Q&A session after this screening. Showing alongside Punk:Attitude is a film offering further insight into the life and music of man-of-the-moment, Pete Doherty. Before his present superstar status with band Babyshambles and supermodel girlfriend Kate Moss, Doherty of course started out with another band, The Libertines. And before they were famous, The Libertines used to gig in Pete's flat, charging fans ten quid entry. Footage shot by Anne McCloy has now become a unique 15-minute documentary The Libertines: Fuck The Police - a raw and close-up account of a certain night when the police busts one such gig!
Scott Coffey's Los Angeles-based comedy Ellie Parker (Sun 2 Oct 17:00) follows said young woman (Naomi Watts) as she struggles to achieve her dream acting career in this hilarious, original and true to life tale. Next is a new documentary by world-renowned photographer Bruce Weber. A Letter To True (Sun 2 Oct 19:00), narrated by Julie Christie and Marianne Faithful, is an ode to Weber's beloved Irish Setter, True. This stylish film uses an eclectic array of source material: scenes from classic dog movies like Lassie and anecdotes from celebrities with strong canine connections like Elizabeth Taylor, are presented against footage of Weber's own dogs. Beautifully shot and edited, and accompanied by a soundtrack of jazz standards by Ella Fitzgerald, Doris Day, and Joni James, it's the cinematic equivalent of a glossy coffee-table art book.
Filmmakers Neill Dela Llana and Ian Gamazon have taken a grittier path with their low-budget feature, Cavite (Sun 2 Oct 21:15). Our protagonist returns home to the Philippines , where he's forced to desperately follow the instructions of a man claiming to have abducted his family. The combination of hand-held camera and minimal cast has produced an intimate and discomforting film that feels as raw and as vivid as real life. You won't want to miss it.
Indeed, to misquote Quentin Tarantino: if there's only one film festival you attend this year, let this be it!
Thursday 6 October
Keith James presents the Songs of Nick Drake at the Phoenix Picturehouse, Oxford
Nick Drake is one of rock's most tragically romantic figures, dying at the age of 26. By this time he had composed and recorded a catalogue of songs that have since become revered by fellow artists and an increasingly appreciative public. Damien Rice, Badly Drawn Boy, David Kitt, Elliott Smith, David Gray...the list of those owing a debt to Nick Drake is endless and the simple act of running a web-search about the man reveals to what extent his music has been re-introduced to a new generation of music lovers and artists. Keith James, accompanied by Rick Foot on double bass, crafts an evening based on both his better known material as well as some lesser known songs that never made it past demo stage, and his approach has been widely acclaimed across the board: Following the live set there will be a screening of the rarely seen Nick Drake documentary "A Skin too Few", which approaches the silent landscapes, locations, people and music in the life of this unorthodox loner.
For more information or to book call 01865 512526.
Claire Denis Masterclass - Friday 7 Oct
7 - 8.15pm, £9, £7 concessions
Ciné Lumière - 17 Queensberry Place , London , SW7 2DT
Contact: Julien, firstname.lastname@example.org
(T) 0207 073 1350
Following the recent release of The Intruder, Ciné Lumière is hosting an exceptionnal on-stage masterclass with Claire Denis and some of her closest collaborators, including Michel Subor (whose performance in Godard's Le Petit Soldat was the basis for his later role in Beau Travail), Stuart Staples (Tindersticks, TBC) and Béatrice Dalle (TBC). Illustrated with film clips, this discussion about her work will mainly focus on two themes: the actors (how she films the bodies, how she lights them, what she asks of her actors, etc...) and the role of the music in her films.
Sheffield International Documentary Festival - Monday 10 October - Sunday 16 October
Contact: email@example.com Telephone: 0114 276 5141
Rough Cut Film Festival - Tuesday 11 October
Kick Bar, 126-7 Shoreditch High Street , Hackney
6-11pm £4 on door, advance tickets available
12 innovative short films will be screened in competition and judged by a panel of industry professionals.
Everyman Exposé presents 'Weapons of Mass Deception' with Director Q&A - Sunday 16 October
Aw ard-winning documentary 'Weapons of Mass Deception' exposes the US media coverage of the Iraq war by news dissector Danny Schechter. Investigative journalist, author and blogger-in-chief of the largest global media issues network Mediachannel.org, Schechter busts through so-called "objective reporting" to challenge media complicity with the US government and its cooperation in presenting the Iraq War the way it did. Featuring prominent British journalists, this is a hard-hitting yet personal film by a TV news insider that looks at the television war, asks why the American audience lapped it up, how the Pentagon helped shape media coverage and the role Arab media played.
To book tickets (£15 each) please visit www.everymancinema.com or call the Box Office on 0870 066 4777.
Screen South Information Day - Tuesday 18 October
THE 49TH TIMES BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL - 19 October to 3 November
This month sees London once again rolls out the red carpet to welcome audiences and filmmakers, home grown talent and international stars, cast and crew, the rising stars and the long-established heroes of cinema, as for 16 days the Times bfi 49 th London Film Festival opens it doors.
This celebration of international film opens with the gala screening of Fernando Meirelles The Constant Gardener , a romantic and political thriller starring Ralph Fiennes as a British Diplomat whose search to unravel the mystery of his wife's (Rachel Weisz) death leads him into a web of conspiracy. Bookending the festival is another political thriller, the second feature as director from George Clooney, with Good Night and Good Luck , starring David Straithhairn.
Other special gala screenings include the biopic of the late country singer, Johnny Cash in the Times Gala presentation of Walk the Line , directed by James Mangold and starring Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon, and Robert Downey Jr as a small-time con artist who finds himself unknowingly auditioning for a Hollywood part in Shane Black's Kiss Kiss Bang Bang , the Centrepiece Screening. There's also the opportunity to see Terry Gilliam's The Brother Grimm , the Sky Movies Special Screening. Terry Gilliam will also be giving a Screen Talk at the NFT1 on 1 st November.
'The Film on the Square' - that's at the Odeon West End in Leicester Square - is always popular, with its programme of more mainstream but quality and intelligent films. This year you can expect Michael Winterbottom's hilarious Cock and Bull Story , starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon in the big screen adaption of the 'unfilmable' novel The Life and Opinions of Tristam Shandy , and a trip through the modern music scene of Istanbul in Crossing the Bridge: the sound of Istanbul , a documentary from Fatih Akin ( Head On ).
Orlando Bloom, Kirsten Dunst and Susan Sarandon star in Cameron Crowe's Elizabethtown , a gentle comedy about an unlikely romance, whilst Scream and Manchurian Candidate star Liev Schreiber makes his directorial debut with Everything is Illuminated . Other titles to look out for include Factotum , starring Matt Dillon as poet Charles Bukowski's alter-ego Henry Chinaski; Lars Von Trier's Manderlay , the stunning The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes , and Gwyneth Paltrow, Jake Gyllenhaal and Anthony Hopkins in Proof are just a few more of the titles to be seen.
New British Cinema is well-represented with John Williams Mirrormask in which a young girl (Stephanie Leonidas) is a performer in her parents circus, whilst one of our brightest new talents, Nathalie Press stars as a girl newly returned from Israel, questioning her faith and lead into a tense and sinister relationship with her brother, in Josh Appignanesi's Song of Songs . There's also Stephen Woolley's biopic of Rolling Stone Brian Jones in Stoned , and Richard Jobson goes digital with his modern story of love and physics in his wonderfully low budget A Woman in Winter.
From across the channel there's the three rockabilly boys in Lucille Chaufours Violent Days , whilst Hiner Saleem follows up his award-winning Vodka Lemon with an insight into Saddam Hussein's brutal regime in the drama Kilometre Zero . There's a killer on the loose in Lille in Entre ses Mains , and Charlotte Rampling says 'welcome to paradise' in Haiti , where middle-aged women go to be sexually pampered by young black men in the 1970s. It soon proves to be anything but in Laurent Cantet's Heading South.
The 'Cinema Europa Strand' includes Walter Stokman's Based on a True Story , a documentary that relates the true-life story of the inept bank robbers of Sidney Lumet's Dog Day Afternoon , whilst there are laughs aplenty in the low-budget Isolated, about a group of lads behaving very badly whilst on holiday in Ibiza. Oskar and Josefine meet a demon who gives them the opportunity to travel back 400 years to visit Oskar's forefathers, only to find Josefine being charged as a witch in this Danish feature Oskar and Josefine from director Carsten Myllerup.
From further afield, the 'World Cinema' programme takes us to South Africa for a contemporary take on Oliver Twist in Tim Greene's A Boy Called Twist , and there's a natural disaster for a group of family and friends staying in a British colonial house in the Himalyan foothills in the Indian drama After the Night.Dawn from director Sandip Ray. Over to America , there's the story of one of the band members of one of the New York underground music scene's most notorious bands in New York Doll .
'Treasures from the Archive' include the Rodgers and Hammerstein Musical Carousel , and the story of the 1944 Allied Invasion in Overlord.
There's a host of ' Experimenta' and ' Short Cuts and Animation' to be viewed, not to mention events from Script Factory, amongst others, and Screen Talks from such people as Pierce Brosnan, Gael Garcia Bernal , and Shane Black , and the Times Debate , with leading industry figures discussing the future of cinema.
Whatever your interests, there's something for everyone at the festival, and lots more besides. Be adventurous with your viewing and expand your cinematic horizons, and set out for a real film treat.
Full programme and booking details available at www.lff.org.uk
OXDOX - The 3rd Oxford International Documentary Film Festival - Friday 21 October - Friday 28 October
OXDOX - The 3 rd Oxford International Documentary Film Festival
Contact: Spellbound/Marie Wright firstname.lastname@example.org Tel. 01865 421105
Hertfordshire International Film Festival - Saturday 22 October - Sunday 23 October
An annual showcase for independent filmmakers from around the world.
The Alternative London Film Festival - Sunday 23 October
7pm - 7am, 93 Feet East, 93 Brick Lane, London
Closing date for submissions to the 2 Days Later 48hr Horror Shorts Competition - Monday 24 October
2 Days Later 48hr Horror Shorts - Saturday 29 October
Hallowe'en Screening and Awards Extravaganza
Community Pharmacy Gallery
Market Place, Margate , Kent
7pm - late
Closing Date for Student Submissions to British Animation Awards - Monday 31 October
Closing Date for Student Submissions to British Animation Awards
Other Categories deadline: 30 November