Formerly the National Film Theatre, this much-loved four-screen venue on the South Bank in Waterloo became the BFI Southbank in 2007. For film lovers who know their Kubrick from their Kurosawa, this is London's best cinema. Certainly, it's the city’s foremost cinema for director retrospectives and seasons programmed to showcase international work or films of specific genres or themes. It’s the flagship venue of the British Film Institute and plays home each year to the BFI’s London Film Festival and to the BFI’s seasons, such as 2014’s celebration of sci-fi. BFI Southbank also regularly hosts Q&As with some of the world’s leading filmmakers. The venue itself is a hot spot, with two bar-restaurants (one overlooking the river, nestled under Waterloo Bridge), a bookshop (good for DVDs too) and a library.
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- White Heat = Scarface + Psycho. Cagney sits in his mother's lap as they plan their heists together with plans provided by classical mythology. In the prison canteen, they tell him she's dead, and he lurches, whimpers, and punches everybody in hi...Read more
- Nora (Adams) waits tables and scrapes by, single-handedly raising two teenage daughters in a clapped-out trailer. Romance seems as scarce as rain in her New Mexico backwater: Nora and elder daughter Trudi (Skye) know what it means to be left high ...Read more
- A restless and sombre foray into the b/w world of the Hollywood gangster film as interpreted by B-movie mavericks such as Sam Fuller, and ex-Cahiers iconoclasts such as Godard, here stripped bare by Fassbinder to reveal the cold underlying mechani...Read more
- Rohmer's first feature, not so much a moral tale as a cautionary anecdote (loosely modelled on Murnau's The Last Laugh) in which an impoverished American musician living in Paris (Hahn) runs himself into debt on the strength of an inheritance he d...Read more
- There is a marvellous moment towards the end of Sirk's film which encapsulates the cruel cynicism that permeates his best work. As successful actress Turner, leaning over her dying black maid and long-term friend, lifts her head in tears, we see i...Read more
Average User Rating
4.7 / 5
- 5 star:12
- 4 star:2
- 3 star:1
- 2 star:0
- 1 star:0
Absolute love the BFI - events, movies, the place is always buzzing, has a convenient scooter parking and a great program as well as a great location
Wonderful place, I found the seats extremely comfortable but verything is expensive (food, drink, merchandise) except the cinema ticket price but what a great atmosphere and comfortable seating area. Worth considering membership at £40 pa for priority booking, discounts on tickets, food, drink & merchandise.
There's simply no rival in London if you're looking for a cinema that specialises in retrospectives and special seasons on directors or themed work or work from a particular country. Their special events (Q&As etc) are strong, and the venue has massively improved in recent years in terms of being a place to eat and drink before or after a film. Many people now simply use it as a place to hang out without even seeing a film.
The home of London cinema. It is a place where you can feel part of a community of film lovers, young and old, rich and poor, of every background. There is no bigger thrill than seeing your cinematic icons where they belong: on the big screen in front of a packed house. Seeing 'It's a Wonderful Life' at the BFI should be a London rite-of-passage.