Rara

Love Rara, the first feature from Chilean director Pepa San Martín, is a naturalistic family drama that has charm and sentiment in spades, but doesn’t hold back with its tearing social cynicism. Loosely inspired by a real life case in Chile back in 2004 – when a judge ruled to strip custody of the children…

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A Monster Calls

Headline Gala I can’t say I’ve had much opportunity to see family films as part of this job, but A Monster Calls was a pleasant surprise as part of the London line up. Directed by J A Bayona and starring Liam Neeson and Sigourney Weaver alongside an impressive lesser known cast, the blend of high…

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Short Films Award 2

Ears, Nose and Throat – 3/5 Experimenta Whilst attending a medical examination, an unnamed woman recounts the shooting of a man by his friend in this curious short. The visuals never quite match up with the voiceover, instead offering a banal canvas to allow you to focus on the delicate story being narrated. The tone of…

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BFI LFF Day One

Day One of the London Film Festival and we start as we mean to go on. Four reviews, one of which is the first half of the shorts programme, brings plenty of variety to ease you back into films post-Raindance. We gave you a whole day off after all… [spacer height=”20px”] A United Kingdom [spacer height=”20px”] Christine…

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A United Kingdom

Headline Gala The 60th London Film Festival is launched with a showing of Amma Asante’s A United Kingdom, a trite and worthy historical drama about Prince Seretse Khama’s exile from Bechuanaland (now Botswana). The first third of the film is particularly insipid, effectively detailing the romance between Seretse (David Oyelowo), the heir to the Bechuanaland…

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A Date For Mad Mary

First Feature Competition Irish director Darren Thornton’s debut feature is a deft crowd-pleaser. A sharp, funny script, great set of performances (including a truly first-rate lead) and a keenly sympathetic sensibility help make A Date for Mad Mary an undoubtable success. In some ways Ireland’s answer to Rachel Getting Married, A Date for Mad Mary…

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Christine

Dare Christine is a slick, impactful re-telling of a singular, shocking true-life story. On the morning of July 15th 1974, Christine Chubbuck, a reporter for a Sarasota news channel, committed suicide by shooting herself live on-air, while presenting a news report. She prefaced her act with a statement, reading that it was “in keeping with…

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Short Films Award 1

You may already know how we usually do this: if the films are nominated for anything, we let you know underneath the film stills. However, as all of these shorts are nominated, we don’t have to! Enjoy. The Send-Off – 3/5 Dare The Send-Off takes an interesting look at the ever-stranger phenomenon that is the high…

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