No.6 is thrilled to be starting up our choices of the Greatest Films Of All Time. Each month we’ll be showcasing an unquestioned classic under this banner and giving the chance to view them as they should be seen, on the cinema screen. And it’s great to be able to start with A Matter Of Life And Death, Powell and Pressburger’s 1946 masterpiece that completely disproves the idea that old films show their age and only with modern technology can a scenario be rendered as truly ‘spectacular’, while also not forgetting the human scale. Join us for the opening part of this new series.
Thursday 18th January at 4.15pm
A second chance to see Ridley Scott’s epic Napoleon in this matinee screening, with Joaquin Phoenix as the Emperor whose conquests compensate for his vertical challenges, and Vanessa Kirby as Josephine. The relationship between the two forms the spine of the film but Scott layers in spectacular orchestrated battle sequences in his customarily lavish manner.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to its length, Napoleon will start promptly at 4.15pm. And as with the matinee screenings, the film will have subtitles.
Thursday 18th January at 7pm
Finland’s most famous export, Aki Kaurismaki, returns to our screens with the tragicomedy Fallen Leaves, which took the Jury Prize at Cannes earlier this year. A zero-hours contract worker and an alcoholic meet and build a relationship. From such small scale and human materials some of the greatest films are built, and Kaurismaki is nothing if not one of the world’s consummate film makers. With 98% on Rotten Tomatoes, the lead actress puts it best: “the film is about lonely people with baggage who meet later in life. It takes courage to fall in love later in life.”
Friday 19th January at 7pm
A Matter of Life and Death was always going to be one of the winners of our Powell and Pressburger poll in the autumn. It’s also one of the most well-known and well-loved of all British films, justifying its inclusion as the first of No.6’s Greatest Films Of All Time series. David Niven is the Squadron Leader who is shot down and hovers between life and death, while Kim Hunter plays the woman who finds his indeterminate status irresistibly attractive. But does love conquer all? To find out you have to ascend the Stairway to Heaven, portrayed – as are all the surrealistic fantasy sequences – with the film makers’ astonishing sense of space and setting. Unmissable.
Saturday 20th January at 7pm
In an increasingly crowded field of dramas starring two strong female leads, William Oldroyd’s Eileen stands out as a superb psychological thriller. Set in a Massachusetts correctional facility for boys in 1964, Eileen strikes up a relationship with new psychologist Rebecca that takes a dark turn involving abusive fathers, obsession and revenge. In a similar vein to Todd Haynes’ Carol, Eileen is a compelling and well-structured tale that, in the words of Variety, "lurches from Sirkian romantic melodrama to film noir to black-comedy horror, coming to rest in the realm of Hitchcock’s thriller." Only fans of Dexy’s Midnight Runners will be disappointed.
Up Next Week:
We keep mentioning it so you can’t fail to have noticed that No.6 is initiating not one, but two, new series of classic cinema this month. In addition to the Greatest Films Of All Time, we will be presenting Cult Classics, our selection of movies that have a dedicated and sizeable following, are acknowledged as classics, but sometimes overlooked by the public at large. We commence with Barbarella, Roger Vadim’s frothy 1968 sci-fi fantasy which gave the world the name Duran Duran (but don’t hold that against it), as well as unveiling Jane Fonda to a generation of 70s youth via its showings on BBC2 (personal experience speaking, ‘nuff said.) But never mind TV, you can see Barbarella on the big screen in all its retro-futuristic glory on January 26th 2024.