Each week, we round up the most exciting film events happening in London over the coming week, from pop-ups and one-offs to regular film clubs, outdoor screenings and festivals. Here’s this week’s top five…
1. Todd Haynes Triple Bill
Before his wondrous new film ‘Carol’ arrives in cinemas on November 27, check out three earlier films from the master of gorgeously mounted emotional restraint, Todd Haynes. ‘Safe’ stars Julianne Moore as a housewife whose closeted middle-class existence results in multiple allergies, a nervous breakdown and her eventual absorption into a New Age retreat for the socially dysfunctional. ‘Far From Heaven’ features Moore again, this time as a wife and mother who discovers her husband is leading a double life. Finally, ‘I’m Not There’ is Haynes’s crazy jigsaw sort-of biography of Bob Dylan, with six actors playing versions of the singer-songwriter.
Picturehouse Central, 20-24 Shaftesbury Ave, W1D 7DH. Sun Nov 22, 2pm. £20.
2. Irish Film Festival: 'Room'
It’s set in the US, but this Oscar-worthy kidnap drama qualifies for the Irish Film Festival thanks to its director, the stupendously talented Lenny Abrahamson (‘What Richard Did’, ‘Frank’). ‘Room’ is a fitting title for this potent, sensitive film about two characters who spend years of their lives trapped in one. But ‘Room’ is also cruel shorthand for a story about two people, a mother and son locked in a decrepit shed, who aren’t afforded any. That one word expresses the grand sum of their shared universe, while also pointing to the wide spectrum of the things they’ve been deprived.
Rio, 107 Kingsland High St, E8 2PB. Fri Nov 20, 8.30pm. £11, £9 concs.
3. Noel Coward Film Festival: 'This Happy Breed'
A weekend of films adapted from, scripted by or starring the ultimate louche Englishman, from wartime classic ‘In Which We Serve’ to goofy heist movie ‘The Italian Job’. In ‘This Happy Breed’ Coward pays homage to his roots, as the film spans the whole of the inter-war period through the lives of Frank Gibbons and his bickering, feuding, lower middle class family. Ronald Neame's camera rarely strays outside the family home of the decidedly un-funky Gibbonses, but there is a constant in-rush of public events to leaven the domestic squabbling.
Regent Street Cinema, 309 Regent St, W1B 2UW. Sun Nov 22, 2.30pm. £11, £10 concs.
Being savaged by delinquent gulls in Hitchcock's ‘The Birds’ must have given Tippi Hedren a masochistic approach to wildlife. In the recently rediscovered (and deeply, deeply odd) ‘Roar’, the hapless woman is pursued around an African jungle by 150 assorted big cats. The narrative is a farcical melange of David Attenborough and Disney, but its value is as an ingenuous documentary portrait of Hedren, her husband Noel Marshall and their daughter Melanie Griffith as mega-eccentrics and misguided animal lovers.
Prince Charles Cinema, 7 Leicester Place, WC2H 7BP. Thu Nov 19, 8.45pm. £7.50, £5 concs.
5. Alibi Film Club: ‘The Basketball Diaries’
Go back to Leonardo DiCaprio’s angel-faced early days with this brutal drama, based on the real life of author Jim Carroll. Here, Carroll (DiCaprio) plays basketball for his NY Catholic boys school, sniffs cleaning fluid with his pals and writes about his life in an exercise book he carries in his back pocket. When he gets into heroin, he still keeps up the diary, transcribing the dirt in his life to eloquent hipster prose. This adaptation faithfully tracks Carroll's descent into the realms of addiction, though it admittedly fails to shed much light on the impulses which take him there.
The Alibi, 91 Kingsland High St, E8 2PB. Mon Nov 23, 8pm. FREE.
For the full list, go to Time Out’s film events page.