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Season 1 Archive

When we first started the Film Society, we had genuine (and justifiable) concerns about just how much of a financial risk we were taking. On that basis, it is all the more remarkable that a fledgling society put on Our Daily Bread, which was great, but had an expensive exhibition licence and was never going to pull in the crowds.

Another film that sticks in the mind for non-cinematic reasons was My Afternoons with Margueritte. One of the supports holding the projector on to the ceiling came off leaving the projector at a tilt. This meant that the subtitles on the left of the screen appeared halfway up the screen and those on the right disappeared below the eyeline of anyone not in the front 3 rows. Thankfully, almost everyone who came that day has come back since, and the Society has lived on to get a new screen and projector, properly secured of course!

 

Mid-August Lunch

U | Italy | 2008 | Italian
Comedy, Drama
Director: Gianni Di Gregorio
Date Shown: Friday 30 September 2011

Gianni is a middle-aged man living in Rome with his imposing and demanding elderly mother. His only outlet from her and the increasing debt into which they are sinking, are the increasingly frequent quiet sessions at the local tavern. As an Oriental saying goes, 'Moments of crisis are moments of opportunities'. These appear during the celebration of the holiday of Ferragosto on 15 August. That's when everybody leaves town to have fun. Opportunity knocks on Gianni's door in the most unexpected way,

Beautifully played...affectionate and beautifully directed - Time Out
Exquisite - The Financial Times


Frozen River

15 | USA | 2008 | English, French, Chinese, Urdu
Crime, Drama
Director: Courtney Hunt
Date Shown: Friday 14 October 2011

Takes place in the days before Christmas near a little-known border crossing on the Mohawk reservation between New York State and Quebec. Here, the lure of fast money from smuggling presents a daily challenge to single moms who would otherwise be earning minimum wage. Two women - one white, one Mohawk, both single mothers faced with desperate circumstances - are drawn into the world of border smuggling across the frozen water of the St. Lawrence River. Ray and Lila - and a New York State Trooper as opponent in an evolving cat-and-mouse game.

The most exciting thriller I've seen this year...it took my breath away! - Quentin Tarantino


Red Sorghum

15 | China | 1987 | Mandarin, Japanese
Drama, Romance, War
Director: Yimou Zhang
Date Shown: Friday 4 November 2011

In 1930s China a young woman is sent by her father to marry the leprous owner of a winery. In the nearby red sorghum fields she falls for one of his servants. When the master dies she finds herself inheriting the isolated business.

The stuff of legend - Time Out
A movie lover's thrill - LA Times


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Our Daily Bread

12 | Austria | 2005 | German, Polish
Documentary
Director: Nikolaus Geyrhalter
Date Shown: Friday 18 November 2011

Welcome to the world of industrial food production and high-tech farming! To the rhythm of conveyor belts and immense machines, the film looks without commenting into the places where food is produced in Europe: monumental spaces, surreal landscapes and bizarre sounds - a cool, industrial environment which leaves little space for individualism. People, animals, crops and machines play a supporting role in the logistic of this system which provides our society's standard of living. OUR DAILY BREAD is a wide-screen tableau of a feast which isn't always easy to digest - and in which we all take part. A pure, meticulous and high-end film experience that enables the audience to form their own ideas.

Outstanding! Provocative! Eccentrically lovely and frequently horrifying...deserves to find an audience of hungry cinephiles - Premiere


Citizen Kane

A | USA | 1941 | English
Drama, Mystery
Director: Orson Welles
Date Shown: Friday 2 December 2011

A group of reporters who are trying to decipher the last word ever spoke by Charles Foster Kane, the millionaire newspaper tycoon: "Rosebud." The film begins with a news reel detailing Kane's life for the masses, and then from there, we are shown flashbacks from Kane's life. As the reporters investigate further, the viewers see a display of a fascinating man's rise to fame, and how he eventually fell off the "top of the world."

A contender for the title of the greatest film ever made - Barry Norman


Crimes and Misdemeanors

15 | USA | 1989 | English
Comedy, Drama
Director: Woody Allen
Date Shown: Friday 16 December 2011

Judah Rosenthal is an ophthalmologist and a pillar of the community who has a big problem: his mistress Dolores Paley has told him that he is to leave his wife and marry her - as he had promised to do - or she will tell everyone of their affair. When he intercepts a letter Dolores has written to his wife Miriam, he is frantic. He confesses all to his shady brother Jack who assures him that he has friends who can take care of her. Meanwhile, filmmaker Cliff Stern is having his own problems. He's been working on a documentary film for some time but has yet to complete it. He and his wife Wendy have long ago stopped loving one another and are clearly on their way to divorce. He falls in love with Halley Reed who works with a producer, Lester. Cliff soon finds himself making a documentary about Lester and hates every minute of it.

Mr. Allen's most securely serious and funny film to date - New York Times


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True Grit

15 | USA | 2010 | English
Adventure, Drama, Western
Director: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Date Shown: Friday 13 January 2012

Following the murder of her father by hired hand Tom Chaney, 14-year-old farm girl Mattie Ross sets out to capture the killer. To aid her, she hires the toughest U.S. marshal she can find, a man with "true grit," Reuben J. "Rooster" Cogburn. Mattie insists on accompanying Cogburn, whose drinking, sloth, and generally reprobate character do not augment her faith in him. Against his wishes, she joins him in his trek into the Indian Nations in search of Chaney. They are joined by Texas Ranger LaBoeuf, who wants Chaney for his own purposes. The unlikely trio find danger and surprises on the journey, and each has his or her "grit" tested.

A masterpiece is an understatement! - The People


A Separation

PG | Iran | 2011 | Persian
Drama
Director: Asghar Farhadi
Date Shown: Friday 27 January 2012

Nader (Peyman Moaadi) and Simin (Leila Hatami) argue about living abroad. Simin prefers to live abroad to provide better opportunities for their only daughter, Termeh. However, Nader refuses to go because he thinks he must stay in Iran and take care of his father (Ali-Asghar Shahbazi), who suffers from Alzheimers. However, Simin is determined to get a divorce and leave the country with her daughter.

A controlled dramatic explosion...tremendous - Tim Robey, The Daily Telegraph


Restrepo

15 | USA | 2010 | English
Documentary, War
Director: Tim Hetherington, Sebastian Junger
Date Shown: Friday 10 February 2012

Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington's year dug in with the Second Platoon in one of Afghanistan's most strategically crucial valleys reveals extraordinary insight into the surreal combination of back breaking labor, deadly firefights, and camaraderie as the soldiers painfully push back the Taliban.

Is this the greatest war film ever? - The Independent on Sunday


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My Afternoons with Margueritte

15 | France | 2010 | French, Flemish
Comedy, Drama
Director: Jean Becker
Date Shown: Friday 24 February 2012

An illiterate and lonely man bonds with an older and well-read woman.

Quirky, funny and very touching...will put a big smile on your face, and Depardieu?s the best he?s been in ages -


Of Gods and Men

15 | France | 2010 | French, Arabic
Drama, History
Director: Xavier Beauvois
Date Shown: Friday 16 March 2012

In 1996, in Algeria, eight French monks of The Monastery Notre-Dame de l'Atlas of Tibhirine have a simple life serving the poor community that was raised around the monastery. During the Algerian Civil War, they are threatened by terrorists but they decide to stay in the country and not return to France. One night, the extremists break in the monastery and abduct seven monks. A couple of months later, they are found dead in controversial circumstances.

A gripping depiction of religious passion - Kate Muir, The Times


The Light Thief

15 | Kyrgyzstan | 2010 | Kirghiz
Drama
Director: Aktan Arym Kubat
Date Shown: Friday 30 March 2012

The main hero of the film is an electrician with a far greater effect on the people around him than his job defines. He is the last link in a huge energetic system and he becomes the binding bridge between the geopolitical problems of post-soviet space and the common people. The economic devastation of the country had an enormous impact on the industrial workers and yet despite the upheaval, these people did not seize to love and suffer, to have and be friends and to enjoy their lives. In particular our resilient electrician, who possesses a wonderful and open heart. He not only brings electric light (which is often out) to the lives of the inhabitants of this small city, but he also spreads the light of love, loyalty, life and mainly laughter.

Compelling and beautiful - Empire


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