Want to escape our troubled times? Immerse yourself in the emotional, life-enhancing pleasures of the musical.

BFI Player's blockbuster collection celebrates the film musical from the late 1920s to today, exploring the visionary work of the artists who transformed the musical into the most joyful and creative of film genres. Going beyond escapism, our global journey will see how the musical tackled the Depression, confronted racism and how it continues to reflect the contemporary world. But most of all we’ll be having fun.

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Calamity JaneCalamity Jane

Musical1953101 minsDirector: David Butler

Doris Day shares her secret love in this whip-crackin’ musical western.

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Singin' in the RainSingin' in the Rain

Comedy1951103 minsDirector: Gene Kelly

Hollywood’s troubled transition from silent to talking pictures at the end of the 1920s provided the inspiration for this greatest of movie musicals.

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Little Shop of HorrorsLittle Shop of Horrors

Comedy198694 minsDirector: Frank Oz

Frank Oz's vivid adaptation of the cult sci-fi musical, with Rick Moranis as a flower-shop assistant battling a 'Mean Green Mother from Outer Space'.

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42nd Street42nd Street

Musical193389 minsDirector: Lloyd Bacon

The great backstage musical features Busby Berkeley’s thrilling and groundbreaking choreography.

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Gold Diggers of 1933Gold Diggers of 1933

Musical193398 minsDirector: Mervyn Leroy

This Depression-era story about four showgirls is an extraordinary mix of Busby Berkeley dance numbers, politics and pre-Code sex.

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Cabin in the SkyCabin in the Sky

Musical194399 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Featuring an all-star, all-African-American cast, Cabin in the Sky plays like a gospel reworking of Faust and the Wizard of Oz.

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The Wizard of OzThe Wizard of Oz

Fantasy1939102 minsDirector: Victor Fleming

Venture down the yellow brick road once again with this sumptuous magical fantasy.

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South Park: Bigger Longer & UncutSouth Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut

Animation & Artists Moving Image199981 mins

In the outrageous spinoff from the animated series, Cartman and co. inadvertently instigate a war between the US and Canada.

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The WizThe Wiz

Fantasy1978134 minsDirector: Sidney Lumet

NYC becomes Oz in the cult, urban reimagining of the family favourite, featuring an all-African American cast including Diana Ross and Michael Jackson.

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Pennies from HeavenPennies from Heaven

Drama1981108 minsDirector: Herbert Ross

Steve Martin boldly takes centre stage in the acclaimed film adaptation of Dennis Potter's ground-breaking TV serial.

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Musical1980134 minsDirector: Alan Parker

Alan Parker’s gritty take on the tough and competitive training within a New York performing arts school reveals all the vulnerability and attitude it takes to rise to the top.

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Goodbye, Mr. ChipsGoodbye, Mr. Chips

Musical1969155 minsDirector: Herbert Ross

Petula Clark gives one her finest performances as a stage star who seduces a shy, stuffy school teacher, impeccably played by Peter O’Toole.

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Hedwig and the Angry InchHedwig and the Angry Inch

Musical200192 minsDirector: John Cameron Mitchell

The trailblazing cult musical about a transgender punk from East Germany who reinvents herself as a rock diva.

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Show BoatShow Boat

Period drama1936114 minsDirector: James Whale

By far the best film version of Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern’s landmark stage show.

Rent for £3.50

La La LandLa La Land

Musical2016128 minsDirector: Damien Chazelle

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone channel old-school Hollywood glamour in this bright and playful romantic musical from director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash).

Rent for £3.50

London RoadLondon Road

Musical201492 minsDirector: Rufus Norris

Daring, startling and wholly original: a musical based on the infamous Ipswich murders of 2006, adapted by National Theatre director Rufus Norris.

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Billy the Kid and the Green Baize VampireBilly the Kid and the Green Baize Vampire

Musical198590 minsDirector: Alan Clarke

Alan Clarke’s once derided feature is surely the only vampire snooker musical in cinema history and a genuine cult artefact ripe for rediscovery.

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The Boy FriendThe Boy Friend

Musical1972136 minsDirector: Ken Russell

A timid actress is forced to cover for the injured star and falls for the leading man, in Ken Russell's thoroughly British variant on the MGM musical.

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An American in ParisAn American in Paris

Musical1951113 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Gene Kelly stars as a former GI turned bohemian artist, torn between two women in this exhilarating ride through the Gershwin songbook.

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Ziegfeld FolliesZiegfeld Follies

Musical1944110 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Many of MGM's leading talents assemble for the most spectacular of the Broadway revues.

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Du Barry Was a LadyDu Barry Was a Lady

Comedy1943101 minsDirector: Roy Del Ruth

Thanks to a drugged drink, the world of a 1940s nightclub is transported to 17th-century France...

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Biopic1975103 minsDirector: Ken Russell

Ken Russell's characteristically spectacular biopic of Liszt, with Roger Daltrey portraying the composer as a rock god, is a heady brew complete with garish Freudian symbolism, Hitler, spaceships and Ringo Starr as the Pope.

Rent for £3.50


Musical2015127 minsDirector: Spike Lee

Spike Lee’s bold and vivacious hip-hop musical restages an ancient Greek battle-of-the-sexes in 21st-century Chicago.

Rent for £3.50

I've Gotta HorseI've Gotta Horse

Musical196592 minsDirector: Kenneth Hume

Great British rock and roller Billy Fury buys himself a racehorse in this colourful musical for all the family.

Rent for £2.50

Bride & PrejudiceBride & Prejudice

Musical2004107 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha’s Bollywood retelling of Austen’s classic romance is an all-round joy, adding colour and song to Austen’s evergreen wit.

Rent for £3.50


Musical199877 minsDirector: Julian Henriques

Neeta and her crew rise to dancehall fame in North West London's Caribbean community, in the first Black British musical.

Rent for £3.50

Sing StreetSing Street

Drama2015106 minsDirector: John Carney

The third in John Carney’s trilogy of musical films is the utterly charming story a boy who escapes his troubles through fronting a pop band.

Rent for £3.50

Song of FreedomSong of Freedom

Drama193677 minsDirector: J. Elder Wills

A black London docker becomes a famous opera singer in this stirring musical drama starring Paul Robeson

Rent for £2.50

Kentucky MinstrelsKentucky Minstrels

Musical193566 minsDirector: John Baxter

Rarely-seen 1930s British musical about two African American travelling minstrels in search of entertainment work.

Rent for £2.50

The Flame of LoveThe Flame of Love

Melodrama193075 minsDirector: Richard Eichberg

Chinese-American star Anna May Wong dazzles as a Chinese dancer forced to give herself to a Russian General in order to save her brother.

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Million Dollar MermaidMillion Dollar Mermaid

Biopic1952110 minsDirector: Mervyn Leroy

Esther Williams stars in this dramatic true musical romance of turn-of-the century swimming champion Annette Kellerman, better known as the Million Dollar Mermaid.

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Hit the DeckHit the Deck

Comedy1954112 minsDirector: Roy Rowland

Jane Powell and Debbie Reynolds lead an all-star cast in this memorable maritime musical.

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I Love MelvinI Love Melvin

Musical195277 minsDirector: Don Weis

With charm and invention by the bucketload, Singin’ in the Rain’s Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor are reunited in the story of a chorus girl who dreams of becoming a star.

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The Band WagonThe Band Wagon

Musical1953112 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

The problems of staging a big theatre production is the backdrop to this gorgeous, gloriously colourful musical.

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Musical1955113 minsDirector: Vincente Minnelli

Baubles, bangles and beads abound in Vincente Minnelli's shimmering musical.

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The Belle of New YorkThe Belle of New York

Musical195181 minsDirector: Charles Walters

Fred Astaire and Vera-Ellen dance above the rooftops of New York.

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Seven Brides for Seven BrothersSeven Brides for Seven Brothers

Musical1954102 minsDirector: Stanley Donen

Stanley Donen's classic musical western, in which a backwoodsman brings home his new bride, sparking inspiration in his six brothers, who decide they want to get married too.

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Till the Clouds Roll ByTill the Clouds Roll By

Biopic1946135 minsDirector: Richard Whorf

Busby Berkeley and Vincente Minnelli are among creative team behind this fictionalised biopic of Broadway composer Jerome Kern, which includes several songs from Show Boat.

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Show BoatShow Boat

Period drama1951108 minsDirector: George Sidney

Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern's classic musical brought to life in dazzling Technicolour.

Rent for £1.00

Mister CindersMister Cinders

Comedy193569 minsDirector: Friedrich Zelnik

Jolly gender-swapped musical version of Cinderella, featuring a play within the film in which the characters star in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.

Rent for £3.50

First a GirlFirst a Girl

Comedy193692 minsDirector: Victor Saville

Sparkling musical comedy about a shop girl who pretends to be a boy in order to perform on stage as a female impersonator.

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Girl CrazyGirl Crazy

Musical194399 minsDirector: Norman Taurog

Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney star in the second adaptation of George Gershwin's musical following a playboy's exploits in the wild West.

Rent for £3.50

Expresso BongoExpresso Bongo

Drama1960111 minsDirector: Val Guest

Val Guest's 1959 London-shot Brit Beat classic charts the fortunes of aspiring musician Bert Rudge (Cliff Richard)

Rent for £3.50

Beat GirlBeat Girl

Drama195987 minsDirector: Edmond T. Gréville

A cult classic British film about late-fifties youth-rebellion set against an intoxicating Beatnik backdrop.

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