British Cinema Morning

Friday, March 20, 2009

Here's Tanya's powerpoint from the British Cinema Morning...

RocknRolla (2008)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Director: Guy Ritchie

Lenny Cole, a London mob boss, puts the bite on all local real estate transactions. For substantial fees, he's helping Uri Omovich, a Russian developer. As a sign of good faith, Omovich loans Cole a valuable painting, promptly stolen off Cole's wall. While Cole's men, led by the dependable Archie, look for the canvas, three local petty criminals, the Wild Bunch, steal money from the Russian using inside information from his accountant, the lovely Stella. Meanwhile, a local drug-addled rocker, Johnny Quid, is reported drowned, and his connection to Cole is the key to unraveling the deceits and double crosses of life in the underworld.

Gypo (2005)

Director: Jan Dunn

It charts the breakdown of a working class family when the teenage daughter befriends a refugee girl. Helen has been married to Paul for 25 years. They live a monotonous and frozen existence. Helen is desperate, damaged, and looking for change. Paul - bitter, hypocritical and bigoted, sick and tired of being in the poverty trap - is on the brink of a breakdown. His biggest fear is change. Into their lives comes Tasha, a Romany Czech refugee, awaiting her British passport and her chance for freedom - a concept taken for granted by all those around her. Told in three revelatory narratives, each from a particular character's point of view, reveals how the disintegration of an ordinary working class family finally comes to a head when unexpected emotions are unleashed.

Ghosts (2006)

Director: Nick Broomfield

On February 5th 2004 twenty three Chinese people drowned in Morecambe Bay. Their families in China are still paying off their debts.

When a young girl, Ai Qin, pays $25,000 to be smuggled into the UK in order to support her family back in China, she becomes another one of 3 million migrant workers that have become the bedrock of our economy. Forced to live with eleven other Chinese people in a two bedroom house, they work in factories preparing food for British supermarkets. Risking their lives for pennies these unprotected workers end up cockling in Morcombe Bay at night.

With an extraordinary debut performance from Ai Qin Lin in a film whose principal characters are played by Chinese former illegal immigrants, Ghosts offers a unique insight into a secret world that surrounds us.

Dirty Pretty Things (2002)

Director: Stephen Frears

Okwe, a kind-hearted Nigerian doctor, and Senay, a Turkish chambermaid, work at the same West London hotel. The hotel is run by Senor Sneaky and is the sort of place where dirty business like drug dealing and prostitution takes place. However, when Okwe finds a human heart in one of the toilets, he uncovers something far more sinister than just a common crime.

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

Director: Mike Leigh

Happy-Go-Lucky follows a primary school teacher, Poppy, played by Sally Hawkins, who has an infectious, positive manner about her. She’s the shining core of the film, an upbeat, happy, yet absolutely three dimensional character.

Poppy’s nature is, inevitably, somewhat tested in Happy-Go-Lucky, not least by driving instructor Scott. Superbly played by Eddie Marsan, it’s fair to say that Scott doesn’t share Poppy’s positivity, yet once more, he’s a frighteningly real character, and at times extremely unsettling to watch.

There are layers to Happy-Go-Lucky, with plenty bubbling on under the surface, yet that there’s no escaping the fact that it is a cheerier movie than Leigh usually delivers. It’s fuelled particularly by Sally Hawkins, who is quite brilliant in the central role, and it’s potentially a career-making performance from her.

The Lives Of The Saints (2006)

Directors: Chris Cottam & Rankin

Mr Karva runs a shady little empire in North London. We don't know exactly how he makes his money but we know it's probably not very nice. Mr Karva's stepson, Othello, has ambitions to take the old man's place; and Othello's fainthearted friend, Emilio, has ambitions of his own. This delicate balance of power is upset when Roadrunner finds a strange, sickly-looking 10 year old boy in the park. All his life, Roadrunner has been on the move - but when he looks into the child's eyes, he finds he can finally stop running. It becomes clear that the child can grant each character their own taste of heaven - the 'perfect, rosy future of your dreams'. The child never talks but transforms the world around him, working on the desire in each character's heart, whatever it may be. Othello wins every bet he makes; Christella finds a new son to replace the baby she lost; Mr. Karva achieves his elusive orgasm and Father Daniel is finally able to express his own secret passions. But nothing ever comes for free..

Mischief Night (2006)

Director: Penny Woolcock

About two families (one white, one Asian) who come together unexpectedly on a local night of carnival trickery and festivity.

Control (2007)

Director: Anton Corbijn

Ian Curtis is a quiet and rather sad lad who works for an employment agency and sings in a band called Warsaw. He meets a girl named Debbie whom he promptly marries and his band, of which the name in the meantime has been changed to Joy Division, gets more and more successful. Even though Debbie and he become parents, their relationship is going downhill rapidly and Ian starts an affair with Belgium Annik whom he met after one of the gigs and he's almost never at home. Ian also suffers from epilepsy and has no-good medication for it. He doesn't know how to handle the feelings he has for Debbie and Annik and the pressure the popularity of Joy Division and the energy performing costs him.

Son Of Rambow (2007)

Director: Garth Jennings

SON OF RAMBOW is the name of the home movie made by two little boys with a big video camera and even bigger ambitions. Set on a long English summer in the early 80's, SON OF RAMBOW is a comedy about friendship, faith and the tough business of growing up. We see the story through the eyes of Will, the eldest son of a fatherless Plymouth Brethren family. The Brethren regard themselves as God's 'chosen ones' and their strict moral code means that Will has never been allowed to mix with the other 'worldlies,' listen to music or watch TV, until he finds himself caught up in the extraordinary world of Lee Carter, the school terror and maker of bizarre home movies. Carter exposes Will to a pirate copy of Rambo: First Blood and from that moment Will's mind is blown wide open and he's easily convinced to be the stuntman in Lee Carters' diabolical home movie. Will's imaginative little brain is not only given chance to flourish in the world of film making, but is also very handy when it comes to dreaming up elaborate schemes to keep his partnership with Lee Carter a secret from the Brethren community. Will and Carter's complete disregard for consequences and innocent ambition means that the process of making their film is a glorious rollercoaster that eventually leads to true friendship. They start to make a name for themselves at school as movie makers but when popularity descends on them in the form of the Pied Piper-esque French exchange student, Didier Revol, their unique friendship and their precious film are pushed, quite literally, to breaking point.
Written by Hammer & Tongs

The Industry (Presentation)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Past Exam Questions (OCR)

Sunday, April 13, 2008

  • Discuss what you consider to have been the strengths of the British cinema industry in recent years.
  • "The country of origin of a film is irrelevant. Why should we be bothered if all the films at our cinemas were made in the USA?" Discuss this view.

  • Discuss the view that British films, regardless of their quality, struggle to achieve commercial success.
  • "The British film industry mainly consists of a wealthy and privileged elite who represent British culture in a very narrow way." Discuss this view.

JUNE 2006

  • How has the British film industry managed to survive?

  • How far is it important, for Britain to have a successful film industry?

JUNE 2005
  • How far has the success of British fims since 1990 been due to their representation of 'Britishness'?

  • Why is it important for Britain to have a film industry?

JUNE 2004
  • What factors have contributed to the success, in the UK and/or abroad, of British films produced since 1990?

JUNE 2003
  • What factors determine whether or not a film can be defined as 'British'?

JUNE 2002
  • With Reference to at least two British films made since 1990, analyse how their content and style reflect attitudes and conditions in Britain at the time that the films were made.

Under The Mud (2007)

Friday, March 21, 2008

With a tip of the cap to early Mike Leigh films and Trainspotting, Under The Mud tells the story of a working class family in Liverpool struggling to keep the family unit together. Joe Potts, the patriarch of the oddball family, has loose ties with the Liverpool underworld, and despite Joe’s obvious flaws as a father and husband, he makes great effort to ensure that his family remains together. The glue that binds is family friend Magic, who finds himself as mediator, motivator and conscience of the family. Written by Liverpudlian teenagers, Under The Mud explores deteriorating family values with human compassion and quite a bit of humour. An exceptionally detailed view of the modern working class British family, the film is one of the best examples of the struggles these families face to stay together. The small victories in life are what keep this family going in spite of the near-daily chaos.

In This World (2002)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Director: Michael Winterbottom

Enayat and Jamal are Afghan refugees who live in a camp in Peshawar and try to escape to Great Britain by the help of people smugglers. Their dangerous journey leads them along the "silk road" through Pakistan, Iran and Turkey towards London.



London To Brighton (2006)

Directed by
Paul Andrew Williams

Writing credits

Paul Andrew Williams

It's 3:07am and two girls burst into a run down London toilet. Joanne is crying her eyes out and her clothing is ripped. Kelly's face is bruised and starting to swell. Duncan Allen lies in his bathroom bleeding to death. Duncan's son, Stuart, has found his father and wants answers. Derek, Kelly's pimp, needs to find Kelly or it will be him who pays. Kelly and Joanne need to get through the next 24 hours alive...

Bullet Boy (2004)

Directed by
Saul Dibb

Writing credits
Saul Dibb
Catherine Johnson

BULLET BOY tells the story of two brothers growing up in one of London's most volatile neighbourhoods, where a minor street clash escalates into a cycle of violence that has tragic repercussions. A powerful and moving tale of young men on the edge, it reflects an emerging modern reality within Britain's inner cities. Pray... They may be your last words...




January Exam Questions

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Here are the two questions on Contemporary British Cinema section of the Exam.

  1. Discuss what you consider to have been the strengths of the British cinema industry in recent years.
    [45 marks]

  2. "The country of origin of a film is irrelevant. Why should we be bothered if all the films at our cinemas were made in the USA?" Discuss this view.
    [45 marks]

Funding and Industry

Monday, March 17, 2008

UK Film Council here

FDA site here (Film Distributors Association- lots of useful links)

Shane Meadows on Simon Mayo (BBC Radio 5)

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Shane Meadows talks to Simon Mayo about "This Is England", out on Friday UK wide!

Here's the link to the interview.... CLICK HERE

This Is England (2007)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

This is England opens at the Picturehouse on Friday 27 April

longroadmedia meet up screening planned for next weekend!

Directed by
Shane Meadows

Writing credits
Shane Meadows

Roland Rat, Margaret Thatcher; Rubik's Cubes, the Royal Wedding; aerobics, skinheads... It's 1983, and the schools are breaking up for summer. Shaun is 12 and a bit of a loner, growing up with his mum in a grim coastal town, his dad killed fighting in the Falklands War. On his way home from school where he's been tormented all day for wearing flares, he runs into a group of skinheads, who against expectations turn out to be friendly and take him under their wing. Soon Shaun discovers parties, girls and snappy dressing, and finds some role models in Woody, Milky and the rest of the gang. But when an older, overtly racist skinhead returns home from prison, the easy camaraderie of the group is broken, and Shaun is drawn into much more uncomfortable territory. Based largely on his own experience as a youngster, this is Shane Meadows' most mature and fully realised film. Handling the complexities of masculinity, violence and race with sensitivity and a lightness of touch, it's hard to imagine a film that would better capture the mood of the time, or that could have any greater an understanding of the allure of being part of a gang.

This is England Official site

SHANE MEADOWS on The Culture Show:

New Tax Breaks Set to Revive British Film Industry

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Article from the

Hats off to a British shooting spree Dec 21, 2006
Finally, new tax breaks seem set to revive our chequered film industry. KEVIN MAHER investigates.

My Summer Of Love (2004)

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Directed by
Pawel Pawlikowski

Writing credits
Helen Cross (novel)
Pawel Pawlikowski (written by)

A tale of obsession and deception, and the struggle for love and faith in a world where both seem impossible. The film charts the emotional and physical hothouse effects that bloom one summer for two young women: Mona, behind a spiky exterior, hides an untapped intelligence and a yearning for something beyond the emptiness of her daily life; Tamsin is well-educated, spoiled and cynical. Complete opposites, each is wary of the other's differences when they first meet, but this coolness soon melts into mutual fascination, amusement and attraction. Adding volatility is Mona's older brother Phil, who has renounced his criminal past for religious fervor - which he tries to impose upon his sister. Mona, however, is experiencing her own rapture. "We must never be parted," Tamsin intones to Mona but can Mona completely trust her?


Sweet Sixteen (2002)

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Directed by
Ken Loach

Writing credits
Paul Laverty

Liam is a young, restless teen struggling to realize his dream in the gritty and dismal streets of Glasgow, where unemployment is rampant and little hope is available to the city's youth. He is waiting for the release of his mother, Jean, from prison where she is completing a prison term for a crime that her boyfriend actually committed. Her boyfriend, Stan, is a crude and obnoxious drug pusher is partnered by Liam's equally rough and foul-mouthed, mean-spirited grandfather. Liam is determined to rescue his mother from both of them, which means creating a safe haven beyond their reach. But first he's got to raise the cash--no small feat for a young man It's not long before Liam and his pals' crazy schemes lead them into all sorts of trouble. Finding himself dangerously out of his depth, Liam knows he should walk away. Only this time, he just can't let go.


Cities want you to Film in their cities!

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Many cities will help film makers to be able to film in their city, as it's can promote the city to the world. An example of this is Film London.

Film London aims to make filming in the capital as straight-forward a process as possible.

They hold a library of over 12,000 London film locations, a comprehensive database of crew and facilities in the region, and can also provide information and advice about the process of filming in the capital. They do not however provide permits for filming.

Visit Film London's website.

Hot Fuzz (2007)

Directed by
Edgar Wright

Writing credits
Simon Pegg
Edgar Wright

Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) is the finest cop London has to offer, with an arrest record 400% higher than any other officer on the force. He’s so good, he makes everyone else look bad. As a result, Angel’s superiors send him to a place where his talents won’t be quite so embarrassing — the sleepy and seemingly crime-free village of Sandford. Once there, he is partnered with the well-meaning but overeager police officer Danny Butterman (Nick Frost), a huge action movie fan. As a series of grisly accidents rocks the village, Angel is convinced that Sandford is not what it seems and as the intrigue deepens, Danny’s dreams of explosive, high-octane, car-chasing, gunfighting, all-out action seem more and more like a reality.

Dead Man's Shoes (2004)

Directed by
Shane Meadows

Writing credits
Paddy Considine
Paul Fraser (additional material)

Richard returns home from military service to a small town in the Midlands. He has one thing on his mind: revenge. Payback for the local bullies who did some very bad things to his brother. At first his campaign employs guerrilla tactics, designed to frighten the men and put them ill at ease. But then he steps up his operation, and one by one these local tough guys are picked off by the terrifying angel of vengeance that Richard has become.

Shaun Of The Dead (2004)

Directed by
Edgar Wright

Writing credits
Simon Pegg (written by) and
Edgar Wright (written by)

Shaun isn't having the greatest of times: the staff at the appliance store he works in doesn't take him very seriously as temporary boss; his girlfriend Liz has had enough of always meeting at the Winchester Arms along with his best mate; and his relationship with his dad--sorry, stepdad--remains heavily fraught. And now the living dead have risen and are spreading their zombie curse to everyone into which they can get their teeth. Just doesn't seem worth getting out of bed some days.

Love Actually (2003)

Directed by
Richard Curtis

Writing credits
Richard Curtis (written by)

Follows the lives of eight very different couples in dealing with their love lives in various loosely and interrelated tales all set during a frantic month before Christmas in London, England.

Morvern Callar (2002)

Monday, February 5, 2007

Directed by
Lynne Ramsay

Writing credits
Liana Dognini
Lynne Ramsay

Following her boyfriend's suicide, supermarket clerk Morvern Callar (Morton) passes off his unpublished novel as her own. With the money her boyfriend left for his funeral, she leaves Scotland for Ibiza where she travels with her closest friend. The journey prompts a series of internal and external transformations for Morvern-- ones which bring to light her experiences of grief, memory, freedom, and desire.

28 Days Later (2002)

Directed by
Danny Boyle

Writing credits
Alex Garland (written by)

It has been twenty-eight days since Jim, a young bicycle courier, was knocked off his bike and injured in a car accident. When he wakes up from his coma, the world has changed. London is deserted, litter-strewn and grim, and it seems the entire world has disappeared. The truth, however, is even more horrifying - a devestating psychological virus has been unleashed on the world, turning the population into blood-crazed psychopaths driven only to kill and destroy the uninfected. A bitter struggle to get out of the city with fellow survivors to a military encampment at Manchester follows - but there, their troubles are just beginning...

Road To Guantanamo (2006)

Directed by
Michael Winterbottom
Mat Whitecross (co-director)

In 2001, four Pakistani Britons, Ruhal Ahmed, Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul and another friend, Monir, travel to Pakistan for a wedding and in a urge of idealism, decide to see the situation of war torn Afganistan which is being bombed by the American forces in retaliation for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Once there, with the loss of Monir in the wartime chaos, they are captured by Northern Alliance fighters. They are then handed them over the American forces who transport them to the prison camps at the Guantanamo Bay base in Cuba. What follows is three years of relentless imprisonment, interrogations and torture to make them submit to blatantly wrong confessions to being terrorists. In the midst of this abuse, the three struggle to keep their spirits up in that face of this grave injustice.