No.6 gets all nostalgic this week, with a double celebration of two of the greatest of all British filmmakers. In an update to our programme, we pay tribute to the distinct social and political voice of Liverpool’s own Terence Davies, who died recently, with his classic Distance Voices, Still Lives, showing on Thursday. And a new film by Ken Loach is always cause for excitement and The Old Oak, showing on Friday, is the latest from one of the most humanitarian and insightful directors we have ever produced.
This second chance to see Alice Troughton’s drama of family secrets, The Lesson, features a decidedly not-Withnail Richard E Grant co-starring with Julie Delpy. The quality of the performances is matched by a complex but coherent plot and excellent writing in this taut psychological thriller that uncovers the dark underbelly of polite society. Showing Thursday 26th October at 4.15pm with subtitles.
Distant Voices, Still Lives, released in 1988 and showing Thursday 26th October at 7pm, was the much-acclaimed debut feature for Terence Davies, that compelled Jonathan Rosenbaum to write ‘years from now…it will be remembered and treasured as one of the greatest of all English films.’ Even Jean-Luc Godard was moved to describe it as ‘magnificent.’ It is an autobiographical film, set in Liverpool during the 40s and 50s, and we are thrilled to be able to screen it as a tribute to the late, and great, director.
If, as Ken Loach told the Hollywood Reporter, The Old Oak is his last film (he is now 87) then he could hardly be more on-the-money with his subject matter. Written by Paul Laverty, the film tells the story of a devastated mining community in the North-East of England, for whom the titular pub forms the hub of social activity, which has to adapt to an influx of Syrian refugees with inevitably mixed results. Rotten Tomatoes notes, aptly, that the film is ‘imbued with the fiercely humanistic spirit that has defined Ken Loach’s filmography.’ Showing Friday 27th October at 7pm.
Just when you thought the world was safe from Tubular Bells, we have to go and present The Exorcist: Director's Cut as our Halloween treat. Long banned, then eventually resurrected, this longer (132 minute) version restores key dialogue that makes the story clearer, along with some subtle CGI additions to enhance the effects - as if spinning heads and, um, projectile vomiting wasn’t vivid enough. However often you may have seen this showing on TV, there’s nothing like the big screen to get the full devilish experience on Saturday 28th October at 7pm. Happy Halloween all!
Up next week:
We are very excited to be showing Smoke Sauna Sisterhood on Thursday 2nd November, and make no apology for an extra advance plug this week. This Estonian documentary directed by Anna Hints is a Sundance winner that depicts the ancient ritual of the smoke sauna, a wooden shed in which the women of South Estonia share a physical, spiritual and emotional sense of community and catharsis. The tradition, recognised by UNESCO in its Cultural Heritage of Humanity vividly evoked in this outstanding and beautifully made film.