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…
Fringe: ‘Death Becomes Her’
The Fringe! Queer Film & Arts Fest runs from Tuesday to Sunday this week, screenin new movies and art happenings, plus talks, parties and the odd gig. The line-up of new movies is strong, covering everything from drag in Cuba (opening film ‘Viva’) to vogueing in New York (‘Kiki’) to transgender experiences in India (‘Guru: A Hijra Family’). But we’ve opted for the idiotically entertaining camp classic ‘Death Becomes Her’ starring Meryl Streep, Goldie Hawn and Bruce Willis. Outrageous outfits and raucous participation will be encouraged.
Rio, 107 Kingsland High St, E8 2PB. Fri Nov 18, 11.30pm. £11, £9 concs.
Black Star: ‘Deep Cover’
Another overlooked cracker gets a welcome screening courtesy of the BFI’s Black Star season, a tribute to the screen’s great black actors. Laurence Fishburne, sensational in in an early starring role, plays an undercover cop brought in to infiltrate a drugs ring. In the course of his work, Hull has to feign indifference to scenes of hideous violence, and gradually becomes embroiled with Jeff Goldblum's on-the-edge lawyer/user/dealer. Enjoy a first-rate soundtrack, splendid cameos, fine, grainy direction from Bill Duke and sharp commentary on the hypocrisy of the USA's so-called war against drugs.
BFI Southbank, Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XT. Mon Nov 21, 8.30pm. £8.35 - £11.75.
Framed Film Festival: ‘Ballerina’
Framed is the annual festival of kids’ cinema, showcasing the best family films from around the world alongside heaps of activities, talks, workshops and fun stuff. This year’s films hail from as far afield as China (musical cartoon ‘Rock Dog’), Switzerland (colourful animated adventure ‘Molly Monster’) and Norway (dairy-based adventure ‘Louis & Luca: The Big Cheese Race’). But we like the sound of French-Canadian story ‘Ballerina’, in which Elle Fanning voices an orphan who travels to Paris to fulfil her dancing dream.
Barbican Centre, Silk St, EC2Y 8DS. Sat Nov 19, 11am. £10, £6 concs.
Scared to Dance Film Night: ‘The Devil and Daniel Johnston’
The mighty Jon Ronson introduces this glorious doc about the troubled indie-rock legend. A prize-winner at Sundance in 2005, Jeff Feuerzeig’s artful documentary offers the microscopic insight of a fan without scrimping on the analysis required of decent biography. Crucially, Feuerzeig made his film with the full participation of Johnston and many of his family, friends and collaborators – and this makes for a comprehensive, passionate study.
Genesis Cinema, 93 - 95 Mile End Rd, E1 4UJ. Fri Nov 18, 6.30pm. £9.50.
Anachron Film Club: LA Stories
A double bill of films shot in the City of Angels, plus shorts, rare clips and archive footage. First up it’s ‘The Watermelon Woman’, a witty exploration of black American culture. Shooting in breezy, boppy fashion, director and star Cheryl Dunye pairs two fictional narratives: her own quest for the truth behind the Watermelon Woman, a beautiful, undocumented 1930s film actress forever cast as a black mammy, and her own life working in a video store, bickering with her pal Tamara and finding a girlfriend. The second film has yet to be announced, but knowing Anachron it’ll be another fascinating obscurity.
Muse Gallery, 269 Portobello Rd, W11 1LR. Tue Nov 15, 7pm. Free.