The next installment of the ICO National Screening Days takes place next month at BFI Southbank, 18-20 April. Several upcoming Booking Scheme titles will be playing over the weekend and so here is a quick preview of what you have to look forward to.
The Connection (Cinema For All Pick)
Will be available on an early window!
The Gallic cousin to Friedkin’s The French Connection, Cédric Jimenez’s epic police drama focuses in on the desperate attempt to capture “la French” the head of the smuggling operation out of Marseilles.
The Artist‘s Jean Dujardin stars as Michel, a newly promoted magistrate whose prior connections to low level dealers may offer the opportunity to finally pin a charge on “la French”. But the slow progress of the investigation, as well as corrupt officials blocking his advance cause Michel to act outside of the law.
A neo-noir set in Spain’s deep south, Marshland is something of a Spanish True Detective albeit with its own distinctive character and themes. Set 5 years after the death of Franco while political tensions run high, two detectives are sent to a backwater town to investigate a swathe of murders. Pedro is a young detective of the new generation, full of hope for Spain’s future and he rails against the old school methods of his older partner, Juan. Juan is a product of the France regime and the conflict between the two threatens to derail their investigation.
Marshland swept the Goya awards winning 9 including Best Film, Best Actor, Best Cinematography and Best Original Screenplay.
Listen Up Philip
Philip (Jason Schwartzman) is a novelist awaiting the publication of his second novel. He feels pushed out of his adopted home city by the constant crowds and noise, a deteriorating relationship with his photographer girlfriend Ashley (Elisabeth Moss), and his own indifference to promoting the novel. When Philip’s idol Ike Zimmerman (Jonathan Pryce) offers his isolated summer home as a refuge, he finally gets the peace and quiet to focus on his favourite subject-himself. Philip faces mistakes and miseries affecting those around him, including his girlfriend, her sister, his idol, his idol’s daughter, and all the ex-girlfriends and enemies that lie in wait on the open streets of New York. A caustically funny, savagely honest depiction of the delusions of grandeur artists hold.
In the late 1970s Nelly decides to escape the confines of the German Democratic Republic for a better life in the west. Her boyfriend, Wassilij, died in a car crash a few years ago and Nelly is ready to take her son and start anew. She finds a West German citizen who agrees to pretend to marry her allowing Nelly to cross the order. But once there she is left isolated in a refugee centre in West Berlin and is not far enough from the troubles of her past.
A period adventure film set during the days of the Ottoman Empire, Theeb, a young Bedoiun boy, joins his brother on a mission to accompany a British Army Officer across the desert. Though recently orphaned the brothers are bound by Bedouin hospitality to help the officer and his Arab guide when they wander into the camp. The war that is simmering is of little concern to the boys but they are soon dragged unwillingly into the conflict. Theeb must learn to use his survival skills to stay out of danger. A worthy recipient of the Best Director prize at the Venice Film Festival Horizons section, Theeb is a classic adventure film and the arrival of several thrilling new talents.
Taking a rare perspective on the issue of gender transition 52 Tuesdays is about Billie – a teenager who enjoys a close relationship with her mother but who is nevertheless surprised by her mother’s desire to transition to a man. Billie’s mother Jane decides it will be best if Billie lives with her father during the year of transition and so Billie will only see her mother once a week, on Tuesday afternoon for a year. Finding herself without the stable relationship she had relied upon Billie seeks connection elsewhere, particularly with two older kids who might help Billie understand the one thing she is baffled by: sex.
The Look of Silence
The follow up to Joshua Oppenheimer’s outstanding documentary The Act of Killing, Look of Silence returns to the topic of the Indonesian genocide. By the end of filming for The Act of Killing Oppenheimer was trusted enough by the Indonesian regime that he was able to make the film he had always intended to make, one that told the story of the survivors rather than the perpetrators. The Look of Silence is that film. It follows Adi, an optometrist whose brother was murdered during the genocide and who, after Oppenheimer identifies the culprits, decides to break the cycle of fear and submission and confront, directly, the murderers.
Other interesting titles to look forward to over the weekend include Timbuktu, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night and We Are Many.
Book your place at the ICO Screening Days here.